"Deadly Bat Fungus Detected in Alabama Cave Crucial To Rare Species"

"A fungus tied to a disease devastating hibernating bats in the United States has been found in an Alabama cave system critical to the survival of endangered gray bats, government scientists said on Monday."

"Detection of the fungus that causes the bat disease, white-nose syndrome, in the Fern Cave National Wildlife Refuge in Alabama "could be pretty catastrophic" for the up to 1.6 million protected gray bats that hibernate there, said Paul McKenzie, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service endangered species coordinator.

White-nose syndrome, named for the fungal residue on the muzzles of infected bats, has decimated bat populations since it was discovered in New York in 2006. It has spread to 22 states and five Canadian provinces east of the Rocky Mountains, killing more than 6 million bats."

Laura Zuckerman reports for Reuters April 9, 2013.

SEE ALSO:

"The Worst Wildlife Disease Outbreak Ever in North America Just Got Way Worse" (Mother Jones)

"Disease Threatens Critical Population of Gray Bats" (Los Angeles Times)

Source: Reuters, 04/09/2013