Report on New York Caves
message from Alan Hicks)
From: Alan Hicks
Date: Wed, 6 Feb 2008 13:43:38 -0500 (EST)
To: (unknown recipients. This
message was forwarded to Bob Hoke)
Given that white nose has now crossed state lines and that there will
be an increasing need for multi-state coordination, it seems
appropriate that many of the associated tasks, including communicating
updates to all concerned parties, should be the responsibility of the
FWS, not New York.
For that reason, Susi von Oettingen of the New England Field office and
Robyn Niver of the NY field office of the FWS have gladly taken on the
task of making sure you are all up to date on what is going on, and
that your general questions are answered. I will continue to focus on
making sure that the various researchers get the specimens and
information they need to figure this mess out as quickly as we can.
This, my last general report, is not a good one.
Sunday I received a report (not yet confirmed) of white nose in
Clarksville Cave, the most visited cave in the state, which is 6 miles
from the next closest confirmed location.
I received notification of an additionally infected site this morning
from an experienced source. Mitchell's Cave in Montgomery
county, is a bit less than 5 miles to the east of Canajoharie NY, and
14 miles north of the next closest infected site. This cave is not
often visited by cavers.
We have suspicious images from Barton Hill Mine, suggesting that it to
is infected. We will have to confirm that.
We currently have 9 confirmed infected sites and two possible.
Right now, with the exception of Jamesville Quarry Cave near Syracuse,
every site DEC staff has visited this year is either confirmed
infected, or is very suspicious. These sites involve over 200,000
animals, including nearly 50,000 sodalis. We are one survey
short of saying that every substantial collection of wintering bats in
the state is infected.
If you are not worried, you should be. The two sites infected last year
that have been surveyed so far this winter have experienced a 90% and
97% drop in populations since this began, with most of the survivors
currently in poor health.
Sorry for the bad news.
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last updated or verified on February 12, 2008