White Nose Syndrome-NSS Liaison Report
June 12, 2009


This report is being written just after the Congressional hearing on WNS.  With spring emergence, we believe most reports of the spread of WNS are over for the year – with the possible exception of confirmation of suspected sites in Canada.  Winter and early spring were devastating to more bats in a wider area, now including the Virginias.  Most suspect it will continue to spread, now threatening some of the country’s largest bat colonies, and additional endangered species.




As I write this, I’m aware of only two publications of research upcoming:  one naming the new Geomyces sp. of fungus, another describing a diagnostic for WNS.  Other research projects have timelines that would lead to fall and winter publication.

The NSS must continue to play a significant role in the WNS investigation, management, and dissemination of information.   While we work to protect bats, we also need to strategize around the future of cave access across the country.  Using our expertise to inform appropriate cave opening strategies will become paramount in the near future.  Insisting on research that addresses these issues is an appropriate role for the NSS.  Urging our entire membership to stay engaged locally and in the public regulatory and Congressional policy discussions is critical.  Other far larger environmental groups and wildlife management groups not expert in the cave environment are involved;  we must remain so, as well.

Peter Youngbaer, NSS 16161
WNS Liaison