Latest News Archive
- US Fish and Wildlife Service releases new decontamination protocols: Officials have provided updated protocols for WNS decontamination for use in field work. Review the new protocol here
- WNS confirmed in Missouri: Officials announce the first confirmed cases of the disease in Missouri. Evidence of the fungus that causes WNS was documented in 2010. Read the press release here
- WNS found in Alabama: Read the press release here.
- Great Smokey Mountains National Park announces bat mortality from WNS. Read NPS press release here.
- Our worst fears confirmed: WNS has killed more than 5.7 million bats! Read the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service's press release here. Read Bat Conservation International's press release here (pdf).
- Tell the White House! Sign this petition; tell the White House we cannot afford to ignore WNS. Read more.
- Culprit Identified: Fungus Causes Deadly Bat Disease. Read the news release here.
- WNS reaches Maine: Officials confirm the first case of White-nose Syndrome in Maine. Read the press release here.
- WNS Hits Kentucky: Officials confirm White-nose Syndrome on a little brown myotis in a cave in western Kentucky. Read the press release here.
- WNS reaches New Brunswick. New Brunswick Museum Researchers discover bat-killing fungus in New Brunswick. Read the New Brunswick Museum press release here.
- WNS reaches Ohio. Wildlife officials have confirmed the first case of White-nose Syndrome in bats hibernating in an abandoned mine on the Wayne National Forest in Lawrence County. Read the press release here. White-nose Syndrome hits North Carolina bats. A Wildlife Resources Commission Biologist says North Carolina now faces "one of the most devastating threats to bat conservation in our time." Read the NC press release here.
- WNS fungus reaches Indiana. The Indiana Department of Natural Resources announced that a bat from Washington County, Indiana has tested positive for the fungus Geomyces destructans and additional bats with signs of WNS were discovered during routine bat counts at other caves. Indiana is now the 15th state to document WNS-associated fungus and represents significant spread by the fungus into the upper Midwest. Read the press release here.
- New Mexico implements measures to protect bats; including Carlsbad Caverns who are screening visitors for cave tours and some other federal targeted cave closures. Read press release here.
- BCI and other conservation organizations are supporting a formal request for an immediate status review and emergency protection for the little brown bat. Biologist Tom Kunz of Boston University submitted the request to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Dec. 16. He said White-nose Syndrome has caused massive population declines that warrant immediate attention (read the letter and supporting documentation here).
- Federal and state land management agencies will enact partial closures for some caves and abandoned mines on public lands in New Mexico in response to the spread of White-nose Syndrome. As part of this agreement, Carlsbad Caverns National Park will develop a process to screen visitors before they enter caves within the park. Read more here.
- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced recipients of their 2010 research funds on October 6th. These funds for research are made possible in part by the special $1.9 million congressional appropriation approved last fall. Thanks to all our friends who rallied to encourage Congress last year. Read the Press Release and List of Recipients.
- Executive Director, Nina Fascione, clarifies BCI’s position on cave closures.
In response to questions about Bat Conservation International’s support of temporary cave closures by the U.S. Forest Service Rocky Mountain Region, BCI Executive Director Nina Fascione said: “BCI is still promoting targeted cave closures rather than blanket closures as a general policy (per our position statement of February 16, 2010), but we also accept the reality that agencies must sometimes make management decisions for resources, even though their data are incomplete. In such cases, an abundance of caution can be justified when the stakes are as high as they are with White-nose Syndrome. We understand that cave closures can impact cavers and other users, but we hope everyone can work together to achieve our common goal of stopping this devastating disease so we won’t have to face such challenging decisions in the future."
- Bat Biologists’ Worst Fears Validated By New Study: New research forecasts regional extinctions within two decades for one of our most common bat species, the little brown myotis, because of White-nose Syndrome. Read press releases from BCI and Boston University.
- WNS fungus recently discovered on a new species in Virginia, the southeastern myotis.
- WNS fungus found in western Oklahoma on a new species - the cave myotis. Read BCI’s press release here.
- WNS-associated fungus detected on federally endangered gray bats in Missouri. Read press release here.
- View - BCI’s Position Statement on cave closures and White-nose Syndrome.
- WNS Fungus Hits Endangered Gray Bats. View the press release.
- BCI’s executive director Nina Fascione submitted testimony to the Senate urging them to appropriate additional funds for WNS. Read her testimony here.
- White-nose Syndrome reaches into Delaware. With this addition WNS now impacts 13 States and 2 Canadian Provinces. Read Delaware’s announcement here.
- White-nose Syndrome has reached Missouri. The fungus associated with WNS has been confirmed on a bat in a Missouri cave. Read the news release here.
- WNS has been confirmed from White Oak Blowhole cave in Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee. The cave contains the largest known population of endangered Indiana bats in the state. Read news release here.
- WNS moves into Quebec, Canada. View the press release.
View - White Nose Syndrome Detected In Ontario Bats.
- WNS is now documented in 11 states. Maryland recorded its first documented case of WNS last week. Read more here.
- White-nose Syndrome has moved into Tennessee, bringing it ever closer to our largest hibernating colonies of endangered Indiana, gray, Virginia big-eared and Ozark big-eared bats. Read the Nature Conservancy press release here.
- White-nose Syndrome FAQ's sheets now available in English (update will soon be available in Spanish):
- Geomyces destructans found in France: The fungus associated with WNS has been documented on a bat in France. See the published article in Emerging Infectious Diseases Journal here.
- The U.S. Congress has approved $1.9 million in federal funding for research to identify the cause and seek solutions to White-nose Syndrome. The funds, included in the final version of the 2010 Interior and Environment Appropriations bill, mark a dramatic increase from the initial allocation of just $500,000 for monitoring affected bat populations. The WNS-research support was added by a joint committee that resolved differences between House and Senate versions of the bill. Both houses of Congress approved it on Thursday (October 29). Read more.
- In light of the dire need to stop WNS before entire species disappear: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced on Oct. 26 recipients of WNS grants through its Preventing Extinction Program. Funds were awarded to six research projects designed to help determine how WNS is killing bats and how this devastating disease might be controlled. Read the news release here.
- One of the grants was awarded to the Smithsonian Institution’s National Zoological Park to establish a captive population of endangered Virginia big-eared bats at the Conservation & Research Center near Front Royal, Virginia. There are only about 15,000 Virginia big-eared bats remaining in a few caves in West Virginia, Virginia, Kentucky and North Carolina. White-nose Syndrome has already infected some caves in this area, and if it continues, this bat subspecies would likely become extinct. Additional information about the Virginia big-eared bat captive-breeding program can be found here
- Indiana DNR closes caves to protect bats. All public caves, sinkholes, tunnels and abandoned mines on Department of Natural Resources properties in Indiana are closed until April 30, 2010, as a precaution against the uncontrolled spread of White-nosed Syndrome. Read more at http://dnr.IN.gov/batdisease.
- BCI gives WNS lecture at the National Zoological Park Conservation and Research Center. BCI’s Mylea Bayless is contributing to the Fall Lecture Series on October 21 at the National Zoo’s Conservation and Research Center in Front Royal, VA. Read more here.
- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service just released the draft framework for a coordinated WNS national plan. It can be viewed here. According to the USFWS, preliminary data indicate that the population of endangered Indiana bats in the Northeast Region dropped 30 percent from 2007 to 2009. Most of this mortality is attributed directly to WNS.
- CBS evening news highlights White-nose Syndrome. Watch the story.
- The final report is now available from the Second White-nose Syndrome Science Strategy Meeting held May 27-28, 2009, in Austin, Texas. Organized by Bat Conservation International and the Center for Ecology and Conservation Biology at Boston University, the meeting included top WNS scientists and wildlife managers. The report includes a review of current knowledge about the causes and impacts of this devastating disease, critical gaps in that knowledge and top-priority research needs. Download the report
- Federal funding for WNS is in jeopardy! Please contact your Senator and Congressperson immediately and urge them to provide funds for WNS research before it is too late. The House bill has already passed, but the Senate Appropriations Committee report (111-38, dated July 7) contains only $500,000 of the $11 million identified by the scientific community for immediate WNS funding. Read our letter to members or example text for your own letter to Congress.
- Scientists recently convened in Knoxville, TN, to develop predictive models to determine how and under what conditions White Nose Syndrome (WNS) might spread. Read the Summary Report on the NIMBioS Investigative Workshop.
- Read about the BCI sponsored May 2009 Science Strategy Meeting in Austin, TX.
- Read the Consensus Statement of the 2009 Strategy Meeting [pdf format].
- Read the conclusions of the 2008 emergency science meeting on White-Nose Syndrome [pdf format].