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Researchers prepare to enter Hale Cave near Albany, where the WNS outbreak began (NCPR file photo)
Researchers prepare to enter Hale Cave near Albany, where the WNS outbreak began (NCPR file photo)

As bat disease spreads, scientists have few answers

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State biologists say Little brown bats are no longer the most common bat in New York.

Their numbers have been wiped out so dramatically by the fungal disease known as "white nose syndrome" that they are now outnumbered by Big brown bats.

In all roughly half a million bats have died in New York state alone since 2007.

White nose has also spread from Upstate New York to a dozen other states, as well as Ontario and Quebec.

Brian Mann checked in with Carl Herzog. He's a wildlife biologist with the Department of Environmental Conservation, who led research trips to bat caves this winter.

Herzog says two species - Indiana bats and Northern bats - have been nearly wiped out. But he also said researchers found some signs for hope.

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Reported by

Brian Mann
Adirondack Bureau Chief

 

 

 

 

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