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Mysterious Bat deaths in the North East US

 
 
Reply Fri 29 Feb, 2008 08:35 am
I've heard about this on the news several times recently. Apparently bat populations in the North East US are being decimated by a disease of some type.

Source Article

Mosquitos are annoying enough around here already. I can't imagine how bad it might get if we lose all our bats.

[URL=http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/01/30/tech/main3773409.shtml]Another Story[/URL] wrote:

The bat die-off has some eerie similarities with "colony collapse disorder," the baffling affliction that began decimating honeybee colonies years ago. Scientists last fall said they suspected a virus previously unknown in the United States.
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Green Witch
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Feb, 2008 08:48 am
My area is very effected by this collapse. We have some very rare bat colonies and they may already be lost due to this problem. We won't know until spring. It's not just disease. We've been having extreme weather from very warm to very cold. When it warms up the bats go out looking for insects, the temperature then drops dramatically and the bats do not have time to get back to their shelters and colonies for warmth. Many people are finding frozen bats on the sides of their barns and trees. It's really very sad, and I agree it may lead to an explosion of mosquitos and thus the diseases they pass on to humans.
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rosborne979
 
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Reply Fri 29 Feb, 2008 09:35 am
They are speculating that the reason the bats are coming out in the cold is that their fat reserves are being used up more rapidly than normal due to whatever illness is affecting them. Once the fat reserves are gone, their hibernation "breaks" due to starvation over ride, and they leave the cave, sometimes in sub-zero weather. There is nothing for them to eat in the winter, even if the weather warms up briefly, so it's pretty hopeless for them. Poor things.
farmerman
 
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Reply Tue 31 May, 2016 07:42 pm
@rosborne979,
The cause of the white nose syndrome hs been found, Its a psychrophyllic bacteria Pseudogymnoarcus destructans. It means it can thrive in low temperatures while bats hibernate. It produces severl enzymes that are brain attacking and cause the infected bats to develop a behavior that has them flying about an not eating, till they actully dessicate from lack of fluid an food intqke. GOOD NEWS-reserch has found a bacteriaphage that destroys the Pdestructans fungus in its various stages, including post infective. The bacteriophage is a sppecies called Rhodococcus rhodochrous. Several Universities and industries have partnered up to study this stuff and its now in a "balls to the wall" application program by spelunkers.

Im an experienced spelunker and, although Im up there in years, I maybe can help in the admin of the phage. Its apparently delivered in a encapsulated state on a silica powder , by adhering via some organo polymer. (KInda like the way they make these pelletized seeds except really really small. The technology is already known by ag because we deliver soil fumigants by this technique and its all fungal focused.

Some 90% of some species of bats in the NE and Canada have been wiped out and its making its way into European bat colonies.

Heres an example of a species going extinct that could have major tsunami waves on the entire ecosystem and agriculture.
rosborne979
 
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Reply Wed 1 Jun, 2016 04:09 am
@farmerman,
That's good news in any case, but I thought they had identified the cause as a fungus. Does this bacteria somehow promote the fungal infection?
farmerman
 
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Reply Wed 1 Jun, 2016 04:13 am
@rosborne979,
oops , my bad. P destructans IS a fungus, not a bactee.
Sorry.
rosborne979
 
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Reply Thu 2 Jun, 2016 04:28 am
@farmerman,
Ok, no problem. I'm just glad they found a way to deal with it.
farmerman
 
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Reply Thu 2 Jun, 2016 04:39 am
@rosborne979,
I think theyve just begn field testing and are looking at distributing it into caves only. Many bats are NOT socia and cave dwellers. We hade a sizable population of bats in our silo<( I dont see em at night anymore, Maybe theyve been wiped out)
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