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News stories tagged with "bats"

White nose syndrome in a New York cave (Photo:  Al Hicks, NYS DEC)
White nose syndrome in a New York cave (Photo: Al Hicks, NYS DEC)

White nose syndrome ravages bat populations as it spreads west

White Nose Syndrome is a deadly bat disease that continues to spread rapidly across the U.S. It was first identified in a cave near Albany in 2006. In the six years since, it's wiped out 90% of the population of bats in many caves across northern New York and Vermont. Researchers have made headway identifying the fungal disease, but they've found no way to stop it from infecting new sites as far away as western Ontario and Missouri.

Brian Mann checked in with Mollie Mattieson, with the Center for Biological Diversity in Vermont, which has been one of the leading environmental groups working on white nose syndrome. She is just back from a national conference on the disease and says much of the news is still bleak.  Go to full article
White nose syndrome in a New York cave (Photo:  Al Hicks, NYS DEC)
White nose syndrome in a New York cave (Photo: Al Hicks, NYS DEC)

White nose syndrome ravages bat populations as it spreads west

White Nose Syndrome is a deadly bat disease that continues to spread rapidly across the U.S. It was first identified in a cave near Albany in 2006. In the six years since, it's wiped out 90% of the population of bats in many caves across northern New York and Vermont. Researchers have made headway identifying the fungal disease, but they've found no way to stop it from infecting new sites as far away as western Ontario and Missouri.

Brian Mann checked in with Mollie Mattieson, with the Center for Biological Diversity in Vermont, which has been one of the leading environmental groups working on white nose syndrome. She is just back from a national conference on the disease and says much of the news is still bleak.  Go to full article
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

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.  Go to full article
Bat mortalities are approaching 90% (File photo)
Bat mortalities are approaching 90% (File photo)

White Nose syndrome continues rapid spread, infecting bats

The rapid spread of the bat-killing disease known as White Nose Syndrome continues to baffle and alarm scientists. The fungus was first identified in upstate New York and has now appeared in states as far away as Oklahoma and North Carolina. Brian Mann has our update.  Go to full article

White nose syndrome in 2010

The deadly bat disease known as 'white nose syndrome' was first identified in northern New York over three years ago. It's still spreading rapidly, with outbreaks confirmed this year in Ontario and as far away as Tennessee.

Here in the North Country, biologists now say the disease has wiped out 95% of the largest bat colonies.

Brian Mann was with a team of biologists when they returned early last spring to the cave near Albany where the first bats infected with white nose were discovered. He sent this audio postcard.  Go to full article
Are Federal researchers moving fast enough to protect infected bats? (Photo:  Greg Thompson/USFWS)
Are Federal researchers moving fast enough to protect infected bats? (Photo: Greg Thompson/USFWS)

Vermont green group wants bats threatened by 'white nose' syndrome added to endangered list

An environmental group based in Vermont says it plans to sue the federal government over its handling of white nose syndrome. That's the deadly disease that's been killing bats across the eastern US.

The Center for Biological Diversity hopes to pressure the Interior Department into adding two species of bats to the endangered species list.

As Brian Mann reports, that could mean changes to timber harvesting and other human activities in the forests where the bats spend their summers.  Go to full article
Researchers crawl under the ledge of rock, wading upstream
Researchers crawl under the ledge of rock, wading upstream

Hale's Cave near Albany is ground zero of a deadly bat disease

The deadly bat disease known as white-nose syndrome was first identified in upstate New York three years ago. It continues to spread fast, with outbreaks now confirmed as far away as Ontario and Maryland. Researchers still don't know how to stop the fungus from reaching new caves. Here in the North Country, biologists now say the disease has already wiped out 95% of the largest bat colonies. Brian Mann traveled recently with a team of biologists returning to the cave near Albany where the first bats infected with white nose were discovered. He sent this audio postcard.  Go to full article
White Nose Syndrome is spreading fast, wiping out hibernation colonies
White Nose Syndrome is spreading fast, wiping out hibernation colonies

White Nose Syndrome kills 90% of Northeastern bats

Researchers say a disease called 'white nose syndrome' has killed more than 90 percent of the bats in the North Country and in caves across the Northeast. The report issued yesterday by New York's Conservation Department found that some of the most important hibernation sites have been completely wiped out. North Country Public Radio's Brian Mann reports.  Go to full article
An infected bat at the Greeley Mine in Vermont (Photo: USFWS)
An infected bat at the Greeley Mine in Vermont (Photo: USFWS)

As bats return to winter caves, white-nose disease expected to spread fast

Last week, the US Fish & Wildlife Service issued preliminary guidelines urging roughly two-dozen states to prepare for the arrival of "white nose syndrome." That's the deadly fungal disease that has wiped out bat colonies across northern New York and Vermont. White nose was first discovered in a cave near Albany. Some of the hardest hit sites are in the Adirondacks and the Green Mountains, where researchers estimate that hundreds of thousands of animals have died. Brian Mann spoke yesterday with Jeremy Coleman, with the Fish and Wildlife Service. Coleman is the national coordinator for the hundreds of scientists working to develop a response to white nose syndrome.  Go to full article
Part of the Maple Ridge Wind Farm. (Photo by David Chanatry.)
Part of the Maple Ridge Wind Farm. (Photo by David Chanatry.)

Birds, bats, and wind

Every state in the northeast has set a target for increasing the amount of renewable energy it produces. Wind power is a big part of this push. Those towers and turbine blades can pose dangers to birds and bats. With more interest nationally in developing wind power, scientists are searching for more answers about the impacts, and how to minimize them.

The North Country is already home to the biggest wind farm in the east. Maple Ridge wind farm's 195 turbines tower over the Tug Hill Plateau in Lewis County. That's where David Chanatry visited to file this report as part of a collaboration of northeast stations. (Northeast environmental hub coverage is part of NPR's Local News Initiative.)  Go to full article

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