White Nose Syndrome-NSS Liaison Report
October 1, 2009


This report is being written October 1, 2009.  Summer reports from the northeast show dramatic reductions in the bat populations of species affected by White Nose Syndrome.  New York State is planning to file to add them to the state’s endangered species list.  If that is accomplished, it will have ramifications for private home and landowners, and likely for cave access.  Congress is in Conference Committee on the Interior Appropriations Bill, which contains some additional funding for WNS.  At this moment, we are working to get that number increased.  Most people involved in the WNS investigation are bracing for another severe winter, with WNS expected to continue to spread.




Conclusion: 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.  This is exactly what I wrote in my last report. It all remains true.

Peter Youngbaer, NSS 16161
WNS Liaison