White-nose kills more bats than ever
A devastating disease, known as White-nose syndrome (WNS) because of the symptoms of the fungal infection, has been sweeping the United States of America. Recent estimates suggest that over 5.7 million bats have died of it.
The fungus Geomyces destructans is now confirmed as the cause of WNS, which generally has near 100 per cent mortality once a colony is infected.
However, isolated colonies of Little Brown Bats that have escaped the disease have been discovered and it is hoped these will help understand why some bats do not become infected.