Dr. Karry Kazial

KazialKarry A. Kazial

Associate Professor

Department of Biology
124 Science Center
The State University of New York at Fredonia
Fredonia, NY 14063

Phone: (716) 673-3284
Fax: (716) 673-3493 


Ph.D Evolution, Ecology & Organismal Biology, The Ohio State University 2000
M.S. Zoology, The Ohio State University 1997
B.A. Biology (summa cum laude), Canisius College 1993

Courses Taught at Fredonia

BIOL 111 Introduction to Biology
BIOL 243/244 Organismal Biology & Lab
BIOL 434/534 Animal Behavior
BIOL 457/557 Biostatistics
BIOL 473/573 Animal Communication

Research Interests – Animal Behavior, Animal Communication & Wildlife Conservation

Echolocation (sonar) calls are known to function in prey capture and navigation for bat species; however, they have not been commonly regarded as communicatory signals. Sonar calls have been shown to have variation linked to the age, sex, family, and individual identity of the bat that produced the calls. For my graduate work I described similar variation in the sonar calls of big brown bats. In addition, I discovered female big brown bats respond differentially to the sonar calls of males and females. At SUNY Fredonia, my students and I have included geographic variation in our investigation of sonar call variation in little brown bats and demonstrated individual recognition of conspecifics using sonar calls through habituation experiments. These findings suggest that echolocation calls, which have presumably been shaped by natural selection for prey capture, have also been co-opted for use in communication. 

Students and I have worked on conservation-related research with little brown bats including an investigation of insect availability and bat diet, environmental and bat house characteristics affecting the use of bat houses, the effect of artificial night lighting on bat activity, and habitat use by bats through acoustic monitoring of sonar calls. I have also mentored a student examining the effect of environmental enrichment on male/female interactions in a critically endangered species of macaque at the Buffalo Zoo. A new research direction in my lab involves the interaction between bats and insects. Specifically, students and I have been investigating insect response to bat sonar while in the context of mate attraction.

Publications (*SUNY Fredonia student)

Stephen   Burnett & Karry Kazial. 2010. Computer Technology and Bioacoustics:   Applications in Bat Echolocation and Behavior Research. Applications of   Computer and Information Sciences to Nature Research. ACM Digital Library. 

Kazial, K.A.,   *Kenny, T.L., & Burnett, S.C. 2008. Little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus) recognize individual   identity of conspecifics using sonar calls. Ethology. 114:469-478. 

Kazial, K.A.,   *Pacheco, S. & *Zielinski, K.N. 2008. Information content of sonar calls   of little brown bats, Myotis lucifugus: Potential for communication. Journal of Mammalogy. 89(1):25-33. 

Burnett,   S.C., Fenton, M.B., Kazial, K.A., Masters, W.M. & McCracken, G.F. 2004.   Variation in Echolocation: Notes from a Workshop. Bat Research News. 45(4):187-197. 

Kazial,   K.A. & Masters, W.M. 2004. Female big brown bats, Eptesicus fuscus,   recognize sex from a caller’s echolocation signals. Animal Behaviour,   67:855-863. (Discovery   Channel,   Science News

Bergdall,   V. DVM, DACLAM, Burnett, S. PhD, Kazial, K. PhD, Mulliken, C. DVM, Monahan,   C. DVM, PhD & Masters, W.M. PhD. 2002. Treating mites in a bat colony: A   case study. Lab Animal, 31(5):43-45. 

Kazial,   K.A., Burnett, S.C. & Masters, W.M. 2001. Individual and group variation   in the echolocation calls of big brown bats, Eptesicus fuscus   (Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae). Journal   of Mammalogy, 82(2):339-351.

Burnett, S.C., Kazial, K.A. & Masters, W.M. 2001. Discriminating individual big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus) sonar vocalizations in different recording situations. Bioacoustics, 11(3-4):189-210. 

Masters, W.M., Raver, K.A.S. & Kazial, K.A. 1995. Sonar signals of big brown bats, Eptesicus fuscus, contain information about individual identity, age and family affiliation. Animal Behaviour, 50:1243-1260.

Mentored M.S. Theses

Danielle Smith. Environmental enrichment as a means of increasing male-female social interactions in a critically endangered species, Macaca nigra. M.S. Thesis, SUNY Fredonia, May 2013.

Laura Alsheimer. The effect of artificial night lighting on the little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus). M.S. Thesis, SUNY Fredonia, May 2011. 

Laura Lynn. Investigating geographic dialect in the sonar calls of the little brown bat, Myotis lucifugus. M.S. Thesis, SUNY Fredonia, May 2009. 

Tammy Kenny. Social information recognized in the sonar calls of the little brown bat, Myotis lucifugus. M.S. Thesis, SUNY Fredonia, May 2007. 

Ethan Peters. Environmental and bat house characteristics affecting the use of bat houses by the little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus) at Chautauqua Institution, Chautauqua, NY. M.S. Thesis, SUNY Fredonia, May 2007. 

Melinda LaBarr. Insect availability and diet analysis in little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus). M.S. Thesis, SUNY Fredonia, May 2004.



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