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  1. White-Nose Syndrome Still Threatening Bat Population

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    February 13, 2012 by Devils Den

    DDD bats

    By Rebekah Penny, Interpreter, Devil’s Den State Park Although there have been no confirmed cases of White-nose Syndrome in Arkansas, all federally and state-managed caves have been closed since 2010, including the caves of Devil’s Den State Park. The closures resulted from the threat of an extremely deadly fungal infection that has been wiping out large population of bats across the northeastern half of the United States and Canada. As researchers have only been following the disease since it was first noted in the winter of 2006 in a cave in New York, there are many more questions than answers. However, new evidence suggests that the repercussions of this deadly disease could affect us all (Consider that this fungal pathogen has been compared to the Potato Famine of Ireland). At this time, White-nose Syndrome is not believed to be a direct threat to hu- man health. However, it is wiping out bat populations. And whether you recognize the importance of these furry, flying mam- mals or believe the many misconceptions about them, there is no denying the vital and beneficial role they have to humans and ecosystems across the country. It has been estimated that bats provide over $22 billion …

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