Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Idaho racing to combat deadly bat fungus

In this October 2008 photo provided by the New York Department of Environmental Conservation, a brown bat with white nose fungus is seen in New York. (Ryan von Linden / Associated Press)
Associated Press

TWIN FALLS, Idaho – Officials are scrambling to slow a deadly fungal disease that has killed millions of bats before it eventually spreads to Idaho.

The Times-News reports the Idaho Department of Fish and Game is partnering with National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service, Idaho Power Co. and Idaho National Laboratory to monitor for the fungus.

The fungus, called white-nose syndrome, kills bats during hibernation, when their energy reserves are critically low.

Fish and Game regional wildlife biologist Ross Winton says Idaho remains symptom-free.

But since the disease surfaced in the western U.S., near Seattle, more than a year ago, infected bats were confirmed in three more states – Oklahoma, Nebraska and Rhode Island – bringing the total to 31 states and five Canadian provinces.