Bats Dead Million
January 31, 2012 by staff
Bats Dead Million, Between 5.7 and 6.7 million bats have died in North America due to a fungus known as white-nose syndrome (WNS) since the disease first appeared in 2006, US authorities said on Tuesday.
The count is a vast increase over the one million bats believed dead according to the last estimate in 2009, and in some areas has meant that nearly all of the bat population is gone, wildlife expert Jeremy Coleman told AFP.
“In states like New York and Vermont and southern Ontario, we anticipate that the overall population is probably impacted on the order of 90-plus percent,” said Coleman, national white-nose syndrome coordinator at the Fish and Wildlife Service.
The figures were compiled using data from state biologists and mathematical models to project losses across geographical areas where the disease is known to have spread.
“This startling new information illustrates the severity of the threat that white-nose syndrome poses for bats, as well as the scope of the problem facing our nation,” said Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe.
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