WNS is a devastating fungal disease that has wiped out millions of bats in eastern North America, triggering what is thought to be the fastest decline of wild mammals in history. Beyond eastern North America, infected bats were discovered in Washington State in 2016, leading scientists to anticipate that the disease may soon spread widely across the western half of the continent, including British Columbia and Alberta.
With WNS on western Canada’s doorstep, researchers from the Wildlife Conservation Society Canada (WCS Canada) and the University of Winnipeg are amplifying their efforts to understand which bat species and populations are most vulnerable to the disease, and where populations may be able to ride out the arrival of WNS and form the basis for an eventual bat recovery. See full press release here.
Photo credits: Banner | William Halliday © WCS Canada