Georgia on my mind

Baturday News is a weekly blog written by Rachael, a middle school student and Save Lucy volunteer. Rachael’s interest in bats was sparked by the big brown bats that used the outside of her former home for a winter roost. Her family cheerfully hosted the wild colony for years.

A photograph of a little brown bat's face
A little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus), now almost entirely gone in Georgia.

Hi everyone! I hope you all had a good week! I had a tiring week because it is standardized testing time again. There is still one more week of tests, but then they’ll be done. I am a little jealous of all my batty friends because bats don’t have to take standardized tests. On the bright side, the tests do mean that the school year is almost done!

So, I read a very sad article about bats in Georgia. Apparently, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources surveys the bats in caves and mines in the state every year. Since WNS was first found in Georgia three years ago, about 90 percent of the bats there have died of the disease.

They surveyed a total of 20 bat hibernation habitats and found that 16 of them either tested positive for the fungus that causes WNS or showed signs of being infected. Most of the bats of the genus Myotis are gone in Georgia. The only bats they found in this genus were gray bats. That means that their little brown bats are all gone. I’m really sad about that.

The article did have a little bit of good news. It said that the gray bats are surviving. Gray bats are listed as a federally endangered species, so this is important news. It looks like gray bats carry the fungus that causes WNS, but they aren’t developing the disease.

If you want to read more you can find the article here.

In different news, I am talking to a group of Brownie Girl Scouts today about bats. I think it’s going to be a lot of fun. Maybe I’ll even show up in my bat jacket!

I hope you all have a good week.

 

 

2 replies added

    • Rachael April 28, 2017 Reply

      Oh my goodness! I never saw this. I am so sorry! I think the best way to help would be to contact your local rehabilitators. Depending on where you live, your neighborhood bats have different needs. They could tell you how to help.

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