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Boreal Community Media

North Shore bats face challenging future

Apr 08, 2019 01:37PM ● By Editor

Bat caves in Minnesota are where WNS thrives. Photo courtesy of John Nycz via Flickr

By Joe Friedrichs of WTIP Radio - April 4, 2019

Half of Minnesota's bat species are nearing extinction because of a potentially fatal fungal disease.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources found that the disease called white nose syndrome has killed between 90 to 94 percent of bats that hibernate in state-monitored caves and abandoned mines, according to survey data released in late March.

The fungus produces a white, powdery substance and is known to only harm hibernating bats. Minnesota has four bat species that hibernate and four that migrate south for the winter.

Some researchers are concerned the hibernating bats will be completely wiped out in Minnesota within the next few years, said Gerda Nordquist, a mammologist for the DNR.

WTIP’s Joe Friedrichs spoke with Nordquist about the decline of Minnesota’s bat population.

Follow this link to hear the story on the WTIP website.

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