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Publication Date

June 2013

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Abstract: Lava tube caves at El Malpais National Monument have received little scientific attention with regard to their bat and arthropod populations. From an all taxa biological inventory of 11 caves,I identified seven new species of cave-dwelling arthropods (including two potential troglobites) and range expansions of two parasitoidal wasps. The presence of unique microhabitats, tree root "curtains" hanging from the ceilings, and moss gardens in cave entrances resulted in higher species richness of arthropods at four caves. For bats, I confirmed continued use of one large bat hibernaculum cave and one significant bat maternity roost. While several recommendations have been made to better conserve and manage sensitive cave resources, additional research and monitoring will be required for the long-term management and protection of several caves. Finally, I introduce three new terms to cave biology: two for entrance-dwelling animals (eisodophiles and eisodoxenes) and one for animals that hunt deep within or near the entrances of caves (xenosylles). Key words: cave, cave biology, cave-dwelling arthropods, cave-roosting bats, conservation, eisodophile, eisodoxene, El Malpais National Monument, land management, lava tubes, xenosylle Open Access - Permission by Author(s) See Extended description for more information.





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