White-nose syndrome detected in Lick Creek Cave

Fungus affecting bats found in Cascade County cave


Bat with white-nose syndrome

GREAT FALLS – During a recent survey of bats at Lick Creek Cave in Cascade County, biologists detected the fungus that causes white-nose syndrome (WNS). WNS is a fungal disease that has killed over 6 million bats in North America since 2006, and biologists are closely monitoring the disease as it spreads westward across the United States.

The disease causes a powdery white fungus to grow on the skin of hibernating bats, often on the face and wings, which causes irritation and dehydration. This causes bats to arouse early from hibernation and exhaust the fat reserves needed to survive the...

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