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Thursday, March 31, 2016

White-Nose Bat Syndrome Crosses the Rocky Mountains close to Seattle, Washington, USA

      Sadly, today, "a sick bat caught by hikers not far from Seattle has now been confirmed to have the first case west of the Rockies of the deadly bat disease white-nose syndrome."


      "First noticed in North America in the winter of 2006-2007, the disease exterminated some whole colonies of hibernating bats on the East Coast, though some species have proved less susceptible.  White-nose syndrome has now swept from coast to coast, the U.S. Geological Survey confirmed March 31, 2016."


      "So far the USGS’s National Wildlife Health Center has only confirmed the one case, in a little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus) that hikers found near North Bend, Wash., on March 11 and took to an animal welfare center for care. Genetic testing identified it as a little brown bat most likely from the West instead of an accidental hitchhiker that crossed the Rockies in a truck or cargo container, Jeremy Coleman of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said at a press conference."



    "Just how the disease reached Washington isn’t clear yet. Twenty-seven other states and five Canadian provinces have reported it, but what was previously the most western location, in Nebraska,was more than 1,000 miles away. The fungus causing the disease can spread bat-to-bat or can ride along on travelers’ outdoor gear."



      The article is in today's Science News.

       Wow, less that 10 years for the syndrome to spread coast to coast in the US.

       I wish it were April 1 and it was all a joke!

Steph

On a positive note, here's ZoĆ« and friends in Ethiopia! (No kidding.)







34 comments:

  1. I think it's pretty much accepted that Pseudogymnoascus destructans, the causative agent, was introduced into a New York state cave by European visitors. Interestingly, British bats seem to be resistant.

    Lyme disease and West Nile Virus spread East-to-West in a similar time frame in recent years.

    Given the role of little brown bats in controlling mosquito populations, I wonder if there's a link between the decline of the bats and the spread of West Nile?

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  2. Seems likely.

    The bat syndrome spread much quicker than say, the pine beetle infestation in Colorado. We are also looking at an ash borer spread here in our state.

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  3. Looks like a job for Laser Bat. Or, we could just throw up a wall.
    "Spring is the mischief in me ..."

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  4. Paul, spring-mending time all around. . .

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  5. White nose. White noise. Both kinda creepy.

    LegoButNotAsCreepyAsBrownNoseBrownNoise

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    Replies
    1. Brown noise was new to me, Lego. I suspect a few brown nosers may be our midst, eh?

      Delete
    2. Paul, I second that motion. . .

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    3. WW, that only counts if "the chair" recognizes you, and I am not the chair.

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    4. Nor do I recognize the gibberish at the top of my screen right now.

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    5. Hmmmm, not sure what the gibberish is, Paul.

      4-letter word for wavy lines in a comic? Clue from a crossword. . .

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    6. Correct! We kept thinking horizontal lines; when we switched to vertical--there it was, stinky and all.

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  6. Replies
    1. Thanks, Paul. The banana fungus-bacteria connection is fascinating. How great to try the bacterial outgassing on bats to get rid of white-nose syndrome. . .Visually, the two fungi do look similar, eh?

      Yeah for the bats!

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  7. Hyphenated.
    Non-hyphenated.
    The irony.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'll bet you also have a card that says, "The statement on the other side is true", and "The statement on the other side is false" on opposite sides.

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  8. Every comment I make on this blog is false.

    LegoParadoxicallyIllogicallyYours

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, that changes everything, Lego.

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    2. "Don't believe everything you read on the Internet."

      ...attributed to President Abraham Lincoln

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  9. Lichen = Lycan
    I'll bet Maizie agrees with me.

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    Replies
    1. She doesn't know what to saw to that, Paul.

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    2. And i'm not much of a hearder.

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    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    4. Is that a pun on herder? A riff on listening? Catch me up, please.

      Also, just learned there's a town called Lycan in far southeast Colorado. Pretty wild.

      Delete
    5. Nevertheless
      Lichens are cool
      I have declared it.

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    6. Paul, you lichen it to a summer's day?

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  10. New post on "Revisiting Iceland: A Kentucky-Sized Place Where Geology is in Your Face at Every Turn" is now up.

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