Since its discovery in January 2007 the lethal fungal infection known as white-nose syndrome (WNS) has killed at many as 1.5 million bats in the U.S. Northeast. Now, as temperatures start to drop this autumn into the range where WNS operates at its optimal killing capacity, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) has drafted a plan to respond to the problem.
The draft report, "A Plan for Assisting States, Federal Agencies, and Tribes in Managing White-Nose Syndrome in Bats" (download the PDF here), calls for a highly coordinated interagency effort to manage WNS and conserve the bat species it affects. The report isn't final, but it is an important step to take before winter, when the WNS-causing fungus will be at its strongest.