White nose syndrome has decimated the bat species of the United States for the last eight years. This raises an interesting question, what states are affected by white nose syndrome?
We’ve published many times in other blogs about how many millions of bats have been killed by white nose syndrome since it was discovered in a New York cave in 2009. The current estimate is that it is over six million. The really scary part about that number, is that white nose syndrome has only made it about half way across the United States. Meaning many areas are still unaffected and the death toll is likely to raise by millions more.
This last summer, there was one reported case in the state of Washington. This one case was extremely alarming because it had jumped across many states to get there. For example, Idaho and Montana have no reported cases, but Indiana does. How did it jump these states in between?
White nose syndrome has been confirmed in bat hibernation sites in 29 states and 5 Canadian provinces indicated in gray in the above map: Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina,Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, and Quebec
The fungus that causes white-nose syndrome, pseudogymnoascus destructans, has additionally been found in three other states indicated in pink in the above map: Mississippi, Nebraska, and Oklahoma.
Keeping Track: What States Are Affected By White Nose Syndrome
Experts from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service literally count hibernating bats! How cool is that?
These experts put together survey teams to go into known hibernation sites and count the sleeping bats. They work diligently to assure there is as little disruption to the hibernating bat population as possible.
One such event is going to be underway soon in Hannibal, Missouri. The bat experts there are counting Indiana Gray Bats. Two years ago when they counted this same cave (an old abandoned mine) they had 165,000 bats. This year, they are hoping for at least that many if not more.
These counting events are critical for keeping an accurate record of what state are affected by white nose syndrome.
Bat Populations On the Mend
White nose syndrome is a large problem for our environment. Check our map above to see what states are affected by white nose syndrome. If you live in one of these affected states, it is more important than ever that you address any bat infestation you may be facing humanely.
Bats are critically important for our environment. They even fall into the “key stone species” category by scientists.
Please don’t harm the bats that may be living in your home. But also, please don’t feel like you have to live with the problem.
Our bat exclusion techniques are a humane way to encourage the bats to go live elsewhere and give you back your home. Call us today to get started.
Your local bat removal expert,