Bat Numbers Plummet Across Area

Concord — January 10, 2010– Bat populations in caves struck by deadly white-nose syndrome have plunged by up to 93 percent, according to a survey of Northeast hibernation sites at the epicenter of the spreading scourge.

White-nose, named for the smudges of fungus on the noses and wings of hibernating bats, is estimated to have killed more than a million bats in nine states [including New Hampshire] since it was first noticed in a cluster of caves in upstate New York in 2006.

Caves and mines littered with bat carcasses have become a common wintertime sight since then. But the survey released Wednesday by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation quantifies just how deadly white-nose can be for individual bat species.

“It really raises a question as to whether they can sustain this or not, and how long it will be before they disappear if this trend continues,” said Al Hicks, a state wildlife biologist.

Read the full article here. Ossipee Lake News previously reported on white-nose syndrome in July, 2009, at this link.

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