White-nose syndrome (WNS) was first documented in New York during the 2006-2007 winter. WNS refers to a white fungus
which can be found on the muzzle and wing membranes of affected bats.
Photo by Greg Turner
It has been associated with the deaths of over a million bats in the eastern U.S. Since the 2006-2007 winter, it has spread from the northeast into the southeast and most recently the midwest. Transmission of WNS is unclear at this time. It is also not yet known if the fungus is the cause of the mortality occurring in these hibernating bats or if it is a symptom. Affected bats do not always have the white fungus but do leave their hibernacula during the winter and typically die.
For more detailed information, decontamination procedures, images, audio and video of white-nose syndrome, go to http://whitenosesyndrome.org.