Maine environmental officials are set to hold two public hearings about a proposal to add two bat species to the state’s endangered species list in response to a surge in white nose syndrome.
The first public hearing is Monday at Portland City Hall and the second is Tuesday at the Roberts Learning Center at University of Maine in Farmington. Both are slated for at 6:30 p.m.
State officials say recent cave counts of the northern long-eared bat and little brown bat show nearly 90 percent declines. The eastern small-footed bat is also showing declines and is proposed for the state’s threatened species list. Scientists blame white nose syndrome, a disease caused by a fungus.
The state will also consider adding two birds and three invertebrates to the endangered list.