Bart Kraus

Bart Kraus

Graduate Research Assistant
Purdue University
Dept. of Forestry and Natural Resources
715 West State Street, Pfendler Hall, G004-9
West Lafayette, IN 47907-2061
email: bkraus@purdue.edu
phone: (765)494-9597

Current Projects


Eastern hellbender translocations in the Blue River, IN. The over-arching project goal is to increase local hellbender population densities to encourage natural reproduction within the Blue River, Indiana. To accomplish this, two different types of translocations will be implemented: 1.) intra-river translocations and inter-river translocations. Intra-river translocations will consist of capturing and relocating previously identified singletons within the Blue River at one study site. Inter-river translocations will consist of capturing adult hellbenders from a genetically compatible source population and releasing them into the Blue River at an additional study site.

Spatial ecology of resident and translocated eastern hellbenders in the Blue River, IN. Home range will be assessed using homing techniques via radio-telemetry. Individuals will be captured and surgically implanted with transmitters in their coelomic cavity. Few studies have compared the spatial ecology (i.e. – home range size, dispersal, habitat use) of resident and translocated adult eastern hellbenders. Radio-telemetry data will give more insight on their movements and will help determine the feasibility of translocating wild, adult eastern hellbenders.

Survivorship of resident and translocated eastern hellbenders in the Blue River, IN. Survivorship will be assessed for all individuals via visual confirmation (i.e. – snorkeling and trying to locate the individuals), when possible. In the fall of 2012, all individuals will be physically recaptured to visually verify and determine their fate with certainty. Knowledge of annual survival rates is crucial when deciding conservation and management strategies for wildlife populations, especially when determining the success of translocation programs.

Utilizing PIT Tag Technology as a Technique for Sampling Marked Hellbender Populations. Detection probabilities and overall efficiency will be compared between two sampling methods (rock-lifting/snorkeling surveys and PIT tag reader surveys) to determine the feasibility of using a PIT tag reader compared to the traditional rock-lifting/snorkeling surveys. PIT tag technology offers new methods of non-invasive sampling for marked wildlife populations. Non-invasive sampling will become increasingly important in future conservation efforts for threatened and endangered species.

Professional Presentations


Oral Presentations:

  • Williams, R. N., B. T. Kraus, and N. G. Burgmeier. March 2013. Management Efforts for the Endangered Eastern Hellbender in Indiana. Joint Spring Meeting of the Indiana Chapters of The Wildlife Society, Society of American Foresters, and the American Fisheries Society, Lafayette, IN.
  • Kraus, B. T. March 2012. Utilizing PIT Tag Technology as a Technique for Sampling Marked Eastern Hellbender Populations. Indiana Academy of Science. Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN.

Poster Presentations:

  • Kraus, B. T. and R. N. Williams. April 2013.  Spatial Ecology and Survivorship of Resident and Translocated Eastern Hellbenders.  Purdue University Forestry and Natural Resources Poster Symposium, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN.
  • Kraus, B. T. and R. N. Williams. March 2013.  Spatial Ecology and Survivorship of Resident and Translocated Eastern Hellbenders.  Joint Meeting of the Indiana Chapters of The Wildlife Society, Society of American Foresters, and the American Fisheries Society, Lafayette, IN.
  • Kraus, B. T., Olson, Z. H., and R. N. Williams. June 2011. Eastern Hellbender Recovery Efforts in Indiana. 5th Hellbender Symposium, Antiochian Village, Ligonier, PA.

Extension & Outreach Presentations


Oral Presentations:

  • Kraus, B. T. July 2012. Ever Heard of a Hellbender? O'Bannon Woods State Park Nature Center, Corydon, IN.
  • Kraus, B. T. July 2012. Water Quality of the Blue River, IN (including water quality demonstration). O’Bannon Woods State Park Nature Center, Corydon, IN.
  • Kraus, B. T. March 2012. The Hellbender. Sunman Dearborn Middle School, Saint Leon, IN.
  • Kraus, B. T. October 2011. Spatial Ecology and Survivorship of Resident and Translocated Eastern Hellbenders in the Blue River, IN. The Wildlife Society, Purdue Chapter, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN.
  • Kraus, B. T. September 2011. Movements, Habitat Use, and Survival of Eastern Hellbenders in the Blue River. Blue River Commission, Milltown, IN.
  • Kraus, B. T. July 2011. Ever Heard of a Hellbender? Young Adventurers. O’Bannon Woods State Park Nature Center, Corydon, IN

Publications


  • Kraus B. T. and R. N. Williams. 2013. Utilizing passive integrated transponder (PIT) tag technology as a technique for sampling marked eastern hellbender (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis alleganiensis) populations. Wildlife Research (In Prep.).
  • Kraus B. T., L. A. Corriveau, L. J. Freeman, and R. N. Williams. 2013. Utilizing a minimally invasive surgical technique to sex juvenile eastern hellbenders (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis alleganiensis). Theriogenology (In Prep.).