White Nose Syndrome Decimates Bat Populations in Northeastern USA
January 28, 2009 10:50 AM   Subscribe

Bats sleep upside down. They hang by their feet. They have little claws. They use echolocation to catch bugs. They are the only mammals that fly. They sleep during the day. They are dying.

The fungus responsible for the characteristic "white nose" appearance has been identified, but the role of the fungus in the bats' pathology is unclear. The syndrome has spread to New Jersey's largest hibernacula (hibernation caves).
posted by Mister_A (86 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
Forgot to mention: The FPP text came from here via MeFi.
posted by Mister_A at 10:54 AM on January 28, 2009


Flying squirrels are mammals..
posted by tomas316 at 10:55 AM on January 28, 2009


Can we start treating the local bug population with antifungals? First bees, now bats. :(
posted by Phalene at 10:55 AM on January 28, 2009


Prevously

It's spread to Pennsylvania now, and there's concern in West Virginia.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 10:56 AM on January 28, 2009


What are the odds that we're to blame for this?
posted by Joe Beese at 10:58 AM on January 28, 2009


Flying squirrels are gliders, not fliers.

Also, there are more species of bats than of any other mammal, by a large margin. So far.

Please be so kind as to read that word in my prevous comment with an i in it.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 10:59 AM on January 28, 2009


Flying squirrels are mammals.

Flying squirrels actually glide.
posted by explosion at 11:00 AM on January 28, 2009


What are the odds that we're to blame for this?

About the same as the odds that humans are actually giant walking fungus. Species went extinct long before people ever showed up, you know.
posted by delmoi at 11:01 AM on January 28, 2009


Also, spraying them with antifungals would just lead to anti-fungal resistant fungi.
posted by delmoi at 11:02 AM on January 28, 2009


What are the odds that we're to blame for this?

Since the particular fungus that may or may not play a role in this is a variation on a strain that seems to be turning up outside its normal habitat (i.e. one normally restricted to places that are cold year round), could it be global warming related?

do fungi migrate?
posted by saulgoodman at 11:03 AM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


About the same as the odds that humans are actually giant walking fungus.

I strongly disagree.
posted by dunkadunc at 11:03 AM on January 28, 2009


do fungi migrate?

The first fungus that came to mind was Cordyceps. (look out, creepy)
posted by dunkadunc at 11:07 AM on January 28, 2009 [2 favorites]


Such a weird form of conceit.... Bats are dying, clearly we humans are killing them. Only humanity is capable of killing animals.
posted by Dark Messiah at 11:09 AM on January 28, 2009


They are dying.

Aren't we all?
posted by Ironmouth at 11:09 AM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


Interesting links Kirth Gerson. It now appears that the fungal infestation in Lascaux is caused by a different organism than the one associated with the bat deaths in the US.
posted by Mister_A at 11:10 AM on January 28, 2009


Bats, bees and frogs, oh my.

What next, I wonder?
posted by ZakDaddy at 11:10 AM on January 28, 2009


It could be worse.
posted by Lemurrhea at 11:13 AM on January 28, 2009


For get the War on Terror, its time for the War on Fungus! We have to act before its too late and they take over.
posted by Sargas at 11:19 AM on January 28, 2009



They are dying.


Aren't we all?
posted by Ironmouth at 1:09 PM on January 28
[+][!]


80 to 100% mortality? Um. No.
posted by ZakDaddy at 11:19 AM on January 28, 2009


I figured the white nose thing was from all the cocaine use. You know bats, up all night partying, hiding in caves to avoid the light of day. They are like little fuzzy club-kids.

I joke because it hurts. Bats dying makes me sad, I try and encourage their bug eating communes around my house as much as possible.
posted by quin at 11:25 AM on January 28, 2009


bats are the worst. they are mammals that fly and they have wings made of skin and they SEE by SCREAMING. that said - now that I know that baby bats are called "pups", I am slightly more sympathetic.
posted by moxiedoll at 11:27 AM on January 28, 2009 [10 favorites]


ZakDaddy, life is 100% fatal. Sorry.

Also, the Easter Bunny? Fake.
posted by Mister_A at 11:29 AM on January 28, 2009


Dark Messiah: "Such a weird form of conceit.... Bats are dying, clearly we humans are killing them. Only humanity is capable of killing animals."

Contribute to the extinction of a species?

Who, us?
posted by Joe Beese at 11:31 AM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


I blame the Joker.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:31 AM on January 28, 2009


When they thought the fungus was Fusarium solani, scientists were saying that it was extremely hardy, and that cavers should boil their caving gear after caving in the Northeast, before going in any caves in other areas. They're still saying that, along with not-so-subtle implications that cavers are spreading the disorder. Some of that may be because they have no idea how it actually is spread.

With the announcement of tentative WNS identification in one WVA cave comes a statement that that cave was visited by cavers who'd previously been in NY caves.

The WNS situation is having a major impact on caving in the NE, with closings of lots of caves and fear of more. There have been hints in the larger community of US cavers that their Northeast contingent should stay home, and not visit the South or other areas.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 11:32 AM on January 28, 2009


This is why I love MeFi, the educated comments. Oh, wait. Wrong place.
posted by HopperFan at 11:32 AM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


Going into work on Monday mornings with White Nose Syndrome is quite embarrassing.
posted by gman at 11:33 AM on January 28, 2009


My prior comment was not referring to Keith Gerson.
posted by HopperFan at 11:33 AM on January 28, 2009


BATS AREN'T BUGS!!!!
posted by DU at 11:34 AM on January 28, 2009 [5 favorites]


Moxiedoll, I guess you're a fan of flying insects. Bats eat literally tons of flying insects every night.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 11:37 AM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


Kirth - Cavers have been caving for decades. Why would a hitchhiker fungus become a large scale pathogen only now?
posted by benzenedream at 11:38 AM on January 28, 2009


That's one of the questions we've been asking. So far, the only efforts at limiting the spread of WNS have been asking cavers to not go places, and to treat their gear harshly.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 11:40 AM on January 28, 2009


If you're so inclined, you may build a bat box.

benzenedream, who knows? Life is a big complicated mess. Also, the fungus is not seen on every dead bat, so it is possible that the fungus is a symptom, not a cause. We really don't know yet.
posted by Mister_A at 11:42 AM on January 28, 2009


Such a weird form of conceit.... Bats are dying, clearly we humans are killing them.

I've got a different kind of conceit for you: For decades, we've developed and employed technologies with the potential to, in the blink of an eye, completely alter the chemical composition of the soil and atmosphere on a global scale. For example, after just a few atomic weapons tests in the 50s, C-14 levels around the world underwent an instant 50% increase, an effect that radiometric dating methods still have to account for; luckily, C-14 is mostly harmless, but we didn't really know or care ahead of time. And as a direct result of industrial mining and manufacturing processes, all fish and shellfish now contain such elevated mercury levels that they're considered unsafe to consume more often than once a week.

And yet, there's still no shortage of us who claim it's "arrogant" to consider that we could be responsible for doing ourselves or our environment serious irreparable harm on a large scale.

I sincerely hope this latest round of die-offs among bats isn't related to human activity--and it might not be, at least not directly--but in far too many cases where scientists (as opposed to people like us who rely on our gut instincts and hastily formed analysis of secondary sources to reach our conclusions) look more closely, humans usually do play some role.

How is it a "conceit" to think our actions might have larger consequences that extend well beyond our intentions and abilities to anticipate them--particularly when there's abundant evidence of that happening now and in the past? Is it a conceit to think our technology makes us capable of destruction on scales unlike any other creature in light of destructive capabilities like this and this? Or is it your conceit that we can only do damage on massive scales when we mean to? Too me, it's not a conceit, but a form of humility to recognize we might not actually have a clue what we're doing.
posted by saulgoodman at 11:47 AM on January 28, 2009 [36 favorites]


To be clear: "What are the odds that we're to blame for this?" was not meant as a rhetorical question. I cheerfully admit a perfect ignorance on matters fungal and chiropteric - and if scientific opinion returns an answer of "Zero", I'm pleased to stand informed.

But my reading of the linked articles suggests that no one has a clue what's causing this. If so, the implication of some of the comments here that it's not a legitimate question to ask strikes me - given our dismal environmental record - as disingenuous.
posted by Joe Beese at 11:50 AM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


80 to 100% mortality? Um. No.

I've always been surprised by the way people look at all of this. Life is 100% fatal. Lives are never "saved" deaths are only postponed.

As for species dying out, each and every species, including humans, will be wiped from the face of the Earth.

That's not to say that we shouldn't do our best to preserve life, or the Earth, but we need to be honest about the position of life in the universe.
posted by Ironmouth at 11:53 AM on January 28, 2009



ZakDaddy, life is 100% fatal. Sorry.

Also, the Easter Bunny? Fake.
posted by Mister_A at 1:29 PM on January 28 [+] [!]


Oh, goody, more insipid nonsense. How delightful. It's lucky for you that I don't possess the nuclear wit of orthogonality or languagehat or you'd be a smoking crater right now. Instead, I'll just close with "suck it" and continue to powerlessly worry about climate change, leading indicators and unknown ecological impacts.
posted by ZakDaddy at 11:53 AM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


On non-preview, what saulgoodman said.
posted by ZakDaddy at 11:55 AM on January 28, 2009


ZakDaddy, life is 100% fatal. Sorry.

Wrong
posted by mnsc at 11:56 AM on January 28, 2009 [3 favorites]


Why would a hitchhiker fungus become a large scale pathogen only now?

My answer to this would be that it's a multiple hit scenario. The bats are sick, perhaps from other pathogens, weather changes, harsh winter, whatever, and are now unable to fight off a fungal infection that they've previously been able to fight.

Also, some fungi can reproduce sexually so perhaps this strain is a "blend" of different strains introduced by a careless caver who had taken gear to some exotic caves, picking up potentially more aggressive fungi. (Not saying all cavers are careless but that a single jerk can ruin everyone's fun)

Another possibility is that the fungus responsible could have undergone a mutation increasing it's ability to thrive, and, at the same time, making it more pathogenic to bats.

So many possibilities, it could even be little gremlins killing the bats and the fungus is a result of contact with them! (seriously though, I don't think it's gremlins but I believe that anything is possible, even though it may not be probable)
posted by LunaticFringe at 11:56 AM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


I guess Koch's postulate hasn't been fulfilled yet (according to this blog). Has anyone tried to infect naive captive bats with the fungus? The white nose fungus sounds like a tombstone marker rather than the actual pathogen. I assume interested parties are using the viral genome DNA chips to sleuth out what other pathogens are present.
posted by benzenedream at 11:57 AM on January 28, 2009


That's not to say that we shouldn't do our best to preserve life, or the Earth, but we need to be honest about the position of life in the universe.

Well, there's that, but more importantly, if all the bats die off, we're going to have a serious bug problem on our hands.
posted by saulgoodman at 12:03 PM on January 28, 2009


ZakDaddy, chill out. Nothing wrong with a little gallows humor.
posted by Mister_A at 12:07 PM on January 28, 2009


Could a bat box actually work to attract bats? I am in an urban area, but love bats.
Also, I must read Mister_A's link carefully since bathouse != bathhouse.
I do not want to build the latter.
posted by pointystick at 12:07 PM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


I hate bats: There was a bat in my house. I said "shoo shoo get out of here" and the bat picked up one of my shoes and flew away! Very funny bats! NOT!
posted by I Foody at 12:08 PM on January 28, 2009 [3 favorites]


Also, spraying them with antifungals would just lead to anti-fungal resistant fungi.

That, and fungi are eukaryotes, which makes it much harder to develop good anti-fungal compounds that don't have ugly side effects for animal cells. The massive success of antibiotics in the 20th century was built around the subtle differences in chemistry between eukaryotes and eubacteria.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 12:09 PM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


I am curious too, pointystick - I live in Philly, and I see bats at the park 2 blocks away. There must be a nearby water source, but how nearby is nearby? Are the park bats getting water from the river? I am going to do a little more research myself.
posted by Mister_A at 12:09 PM on January 28, 2009


Bush Administration Accomplishment #73: Not all bats died during the Bush era
posted by kittens for breakfast at 12:21 PM on January 28, 2009 [4 favorites]


They have a plan.
posted by Artw at 12:25 PM on January 28, 2009


Mister_A - Fair enough. Commencing chill.

(Still sad about bats, bees and frogs, though.)
posted by ZakDaddy at 12:26 PM on January 28, 2009


I'm a mammal. I flew to Pittsburg once. The (human) lady next to me had a cat in a carrier with her.

I'd like to see some bat try that!
posted by Pollomacho at 12:29 PM on January 28, 2009


Species went extinct long before people ever showed up, you know.

Broken sarcasm meter, yes? I must report myself to the shop? I can only hope.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 12:33 PM on January 28, 2009


all fish and shellfish now contain such elevated mercury levels that they're considered unsafe to consume more often than once a week

Some fish and shellfish, perhaps. Not that I doubt they won't all eventually be effected.
posted by oaf at 12:43 PM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


I love bats, dragonflies, etc. Pretty much anything that eats and kills the most dangerous creature (to humans) on earth (mosquitos and their attendant spread of diseases).*
At least the flying squirrels have a moose as a buddy.

*(on the other hand - perhaps decimating the human population might ease some pressure on animals, the environment, et.al. but I’m not Ra’s Al Ghul that I’m so ready to discard all that pain and suffering, and anyway, we’d have many of the same problems, just some of them on a smaller scale or affecting less people)

Whether it’s our fault or not is material only to the solution. And I’m glad to see the implication is that we should look for a solution to this. As there is ambiguity as to whether it’s humanity’s fault or not that this is happening, there’s little question we should try to help the bats, for many reasons, not the least of which to prevent the spread of disease, etc. through flying insects.
posted by Smedleyman at 12:44 PM on January 28, 2009


pointystick: Could a bat box actually work to attract bats? I am in an urban area, but love bats.

The first one I put up attracted wasps, who choked it out with their nest. I had to wait 'til frost to take it down and clean it out. The key is to put the box up high with a southern exposure. They like the warmth. Some pointers. And some more.
posted by VicNebulous at 12:49 PM on January 28, 2009 [2 favorites]


Thanks Vic! Do the bats live in it year round? Do they hibernate in it? I have been hot to build a bat box for months now...
posted by Mister_A at 12:50 PM on January 28, 2009


Ehh, it's pretty darn conclusive that humans have a big impact on bat populations via habitat loss, insecticides, and recreational caving. In general, I've found that cavers have been quite responsive to recommendations, even to the point of closing and barricading the most sensitive caves. A regional quarantine certainly can't hurt the situation, and it's not as if it's a measure that will directly affect most of us on a daily basis.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 12:53 PM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


At first i thought this said white NOISE syndrome, like noise pollution was messing up their sonar or something.
posted by snofoam at 1:01 PM on January 28, 2009


Thanks, Vic! My grandfather built a box once in a rural area. I wondered then if he didn't attract any bats because there were enough natural homes for them but now it looks like the color thing may have been an issue. I had no idea about the paint!
posted by pointystick at 1:01 PM on January 28, 2009


An ornithologist once told me you can compel a bat to hibernate by putting it in a damp sock and hanging the sock in the fridge.

I dunno what that has to do with this, but I found it interesting.

Anyone know if that's true?
posted by hifiparasol at 1:08 PM on January 28, 2009


...could it be global warming related?

Everything bad that happens is caused by global warming. The breakup of the Doobie Brothers was caused by global warming!
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 1:11 PM on January 28, 2009


antifungals would just lead to anti-fungal resistant fungi which would be fungirific
posted by KokuRyu at 1:13 PM on January 28, 2009


To expound on saulgoodman's comment, it is no strange conceit to acknowledge the profound effect that humans are having on the biosphere.

This is a link to a satellite view of a small section of the British Columbia forest, or rather, a clear-cut patch of it. There's not much to see here, but if you keep pulling back on the view, you can see how every clear-cut patch forms a little speckle on the image. How far back do you have to pull before the forest no longer looks riddled with disease?

I try to be careful not to confuse cause with correlation. But it's hard for me to look at that satellite view, and somehow imagine that the acceleration of the Holocene extinction event is not closely linked to the industrial revolution and its aftermath.
posted by malocchio at 1:30 PM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


Mr_A: They are little brown bats, which are quite common throughout the country and do hibernate for several months, but they apparently do it elsewhere. There are usually thousands and thousands out on a given summer evening along our lake shore. This year, it seemed not so many. I hadn't heard that the white nose thing had spread to New Hampshire, but it did seem there were fewer. Then again, we also have fewer fish, fewer birds, WAY fewer frogs and toads, and more invasive exotic species such as EurAsian Milfoil. Next up: zebra mussels. Then we're well on the way to fucked.
posted by VicNebulous at 1:34 PM on January 28, 2009


I took my children on a hike on a trail near a small marshland in southern VA last summer. We knelt down to watch the tiny, skittish frogs that skittered away from the trail as we approached. They sat still in the weeds at the side of the path as long as we were quiet and calm. I wonder if my kids will get to do this with their grandkids...
posted by Mister_A at 1:37 PM on January 28, 2009


I mean with my grandkids...
posted by Mister_A at 1:37 PM on January 28, 2009


That's not to say that we shouldn't do our best to preserve life, or the Earth, but we need to be honest about the position of life in the universe.

Why? Really, why? It just justifies complacency.
posted by salvia at 1:43 PM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


I love The Bats!
posted by elmono at 1:59 PM on January 28, 2009


WNS is no joke...it's decimating bat populations. Just last week the State of Kentucky canceled a caving event at Carter Caves State Park because of the threat of cavers bringing WNS into the park.

Carter Caves is the largest hibernaculum in the State for the Indiana Bat (Myotis sodalis), an endangered species.
posted by griffey at 2:07 PM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


As for species dying out, each and every species, including humans, will be wiped from the face of the Earth.

That's not to say that we shouldn't do our best to preserve life, or the Earth, but we need to be honest about the position of life in the universe.
We each and every one of us will die eventually, but that doesn't mean we don't do our best to keep ourselves from dying in plagues and disasters and wars and such.

Every species will go extinct eventually, but we're right now enjoying an extinction rate somewhere between two and three orders of magnitude higher than the background rate, and most of the reason has to do with human activity. This bat plague is not, most likely, not business as usual.
posted by Coyote Crossing at 2:09 PM on January 28, 2009 [3 favorites]


One of my old houses used to have a few bats - it was a basement apartment in a pretty sketchy house (student ghetto, c'est la vie). We'd pretty frequently find a House Centipede on the wall, or falling from the ceiling into our laps - no big deal. My housemate, Shilpa, did not like them one bit.

Anyways, one night at 3:00, I awoke to hear her screaming in bloody terror. I bounded out of bed, ran down the hall to her room, and burst through the door - didn't know what was going on, but I knew it couldn't be good. She's in bed, sitting with the covers up to her eyes, and there's a bat, flying in circles in her room. I turn around and promptly run out of the room, followed by the sound of her yelling, calling me a coward.

I return, having only gone back to the room to put on some form of pants/underwear (don't remember) and to grab my tennis racket. I spent the next 10 minutes trying and failing to hit it, until we realized that we could just shoo it out the back door. So we open the back door, and it flies out. Good.

About 2 weeks later, we're winding down after throwing a particularly fun party, both quite drunk. I get up and walk over towards the washroom, when there's a thump on the bathroom door. And again, thump. I shut the door tighter - it sounds like there's a badger or raccoon, bouncing off the door. Don't know how either would get into the bathroom, as it's not windowed. But we're scared.

Every 40 seconds or so, thump. So we call animal control emergency, they say they'll be right over. Wait an hour, nothing. Eventually the sound stops. Is it asleep? Waiting? My overfull bladder decides that I'll investigate. In a sudden movement, I open the door, holding my tennis racket yet again. Nothing there. No holes in the wall, not in the shower, toilet's got no drowned animals...

And then I hear Shilpa scream. I run back out, and there's a bat flying in circles in our living room. We know what to do this time - we open the front door, she runs out, and I try to herd it using a sheet out the door, but this one's not taking. After about 10 minutes it leaves. Just as Shil's coming back inside.

And animal control never showed up.

But bats are cool
posted by Lemurrhea at 2:14 PM on January 28, 2009


I'm always thankful not to see the "Why don't they just evolve!" sarcastic bon mot that I would if this were posted on freerepublic. Because that makes me want to punch someone right in their jowly neck.
posted by BrotherCaine at 2:58 PM on January 28, 2009


I whiled away many a summer evening in my youth, lying on my back on our wide lawn at dusk, tossing a whiffle ball overhead, high into the air, watching the bats circle it, perplexed, whirling around and around but never quite touching it, catching the ball and throwing it back up into their midst over and over, the ball and the bats silhouetted so clearly against the darkening sky, until curiosity would finally get the better of them, and one would swoop in and grab the ball with its feet and toss it quickly aside, inedible, uninteresting, so finally I would have to stand up, fetch, lay back down, and start over, again. Whiffle bats!
posted by steef at 3:05 PM on January 28, 2009 [7 favorites]


The human race continues to perplex, fascinate, and repulse me. We consistently herald our ability to chemically, structurally and aesthetically manipulate indigenous environments. We bore enormous craters in the surface of the planet, and erect structures hundreds and thousands of meters high. We flatten thousands of square kilometers of forest and pave over it. We suck the earth dry at every opportunity, plundering - yes, literally plundering - oceans of hundreds of thousands of species and, because energy can never be destroyed, but only take a different form, we replenish this ocean with pollutants, excrement, floating continents of plastic and rubber. We irradiate and lay waste to entire environments. And we congratulate ourselves on our capacity to do so. We need iPods, after all, and SUVs and monsterburgers, because that's our right, isn't it? So we suck and we fuck and we chuck and when one "resource" is completely obliterated, we move on to the next, leaving nothing behind us but a great vile stain. We are the ultimate organism. We can, and will, do anything.

But bats, getting sick? No, uhh, that wasn't us.
posted by turgid dahlia at 3:36 PM on January 28, 2009 [3 favorites]


bats are not the worst. pigeons are the worst.

i once killed 8 bats during a summer in Richmond, VA. now i feel guilty.
posted by mrgrimm at 3:42 PM on January 28, 2009


I study invasive fungal species. Generally, if you're a parasite, you don't want to kill your host, or at least you want to kill it slowly enough that it can reproduce and leave your offspring with more food. Today, with the explosion of global trade, fungi are spreading to new territories and encountering organisms they haven't co-evolved with. That often leads to mismatches where 100% mortality of the host occurs (of course, it often leads to no hosts at all). It would not be at all surprising if a globe-trotting spelunker brought a species of Geomyces to American caves that American bats couldn't fight off. We used to travel by ocean liner: by the time a traveller landed, he was probably fairly clean. Today, a traveller can cross the globe with the damp soil in the treads of her hiking boots never drying out.

That said, there's no evidence yet that this fungus causes bat mortality. Fungi are very opportunistic, and will attack a weak host.
posted by acrasis at 4:20 PM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


Dunkadunc, that Cordyceps video is nightmarish.
posted by WPW at 4:25 PM on January 28, 2009


As for species dying out, each and every species, including humans, will be wiped from the face of the Earth.

That's a vile mistranslation. Every species, including humans, will disappear from the pages of time.
posted by Krrrlson at 4:29 PM on January 28, 2009


We are trading away a beautiful, complex planet full of wonders for cheap plastic garbage.
posted by belvidere at 5:19 PM on January 28, 2009


Now I'm never going to know what it's like to be one
posted by bonaldi at 5:33 PM on January 28, 2009 [1 favorite]


At the species level, rodents are the most abundant mammals with about 40%, but bats are #2 with about 20%.
posted by jamjam at 6:19 PM on January 28, 2009


squeak!

snofoam: That's what I thought too!

Re bats in urban areas: There's tons of bats in Brisbane, and Brisbane's urban, so I'd say yes. They mostly come from an island up the river. There's been a number of cases of bats being caught in netting or fencing, or babies being orphaned because of this - poor things :(
posted by divabat at 8:05 PM on January 28, 2009


There's tons of bats in Brisbane, and Brisbane's urban, so I'd say yes

One of their flight paths is directly over my house in Alderley. At twilight, thousands and thousands of flying foxes drifting overhead, towards the city, oddly enough (though perhaps they veer away). The amazing thing is how quiet they are. If you're lucky you can hear the gentle beating of their wings, maybe a handful of chirps, but apart from that it's just this silent aerial march and I love it so.
posted by turgid dahlia at 8:45 PM on January 28, 2009


No bats, no durian

I hope you all can keep your white noses safely in the Northeastern US before you do some serious harm.
posted by BinGregory at 9:15 PM on January 28, 2009


You're assuming that WNS isn't a transplant from, say, Malaysia.


thousands and thousands of flying foxes drifting overhead

That must be amazing. Those are very large bats.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:01 AM on January 29, 2009


effected

That's what I get for not proofreading. I'm not an investment banker, or I'd insert some joke blaming it on white nose syndrome.

posted by oaf at 11:59 AM on January 29, 2009


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