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What We Do/White-nose Syndrome

White-nose Syndrome


WNS Latest

White-nose Syndrome confirmed in two new states: Michigan and Wisconsin. 25 states and 5 Canadian provinces now confirmed for this disease. Read Wisconsin’s announcement here. And read Michigan’s press release here.

Bat Conservation International and The Tennessee Chapter of The Nature Conservancy are proud to announce our 2014 Request for Proposals for White-nose Syndrome Research Grants. Please see the announcement here for application information and deadlines.

WNS Fungus Reaches Minnesota The fungus that causes White-nose Syndrome is confirmed in the northeastern and southeastern corners of the state. Read the press release here.

WNS-causing fungus confirmed in Arkansas. Read the press release here.

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service awards $950,000 to fight WNS in 28 states. Read more.

WNS continues to move south and is confirmed in Georgia. Read more.

WNS hits South Carolina. White-nose Syndrome is now battering bat populations in 22 U.S. States and 5 Canadian provinces. Read more.

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White-nose Syndrome has devastated bat populations across the eastern United States during the past five years, causing “the most precipitous wildlife decline in the past century in North America,” according to biologists. And this relentless disease keeps spreading into new areas. BCI is working with agencies, organizations and individuals to understand and stop WNS and begin restoring these decimated bat populations.

White-nose Syndrome has killed more than 5.7 million bats since it was discovered in a single New York cave in February 2006. Seven bat species in 22 U.S. states and 5 Canadian provinces have now been documented with WNS. The Pseudogymnoascus destructans fungus that is the demonstrated cause of WNS has been confirmed (without the disease, so far) on three other species and in two additional states.

Named for a cold-loving white fungus typically found on the faces and wings of infected bats, White-nose Syndrome causes bats to awaken more often during hibernation and use up the stored fat reserves that are needed to get them through the winter. Infected bats often emerge too soon from hibernation and are often seen flying around in midwinter. These bats usually freeze or starve to death.

Mortality rates approaching 100 percent are reported at some sites. White-nose Syndrome threatens some of the largest hibernation caves for endangered Indiana myotis, gray myotis, and Virginia big-eared bats. Ultimately, bats across North America are at imminent risk.

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Last Updated: Monday, 14 April 2014
Unless otherwise noted, all images are copyright ©Merlin D. Tuttle and/or ©Bat Conservation International