June 25, 2013

Maine volunteers needed to count bat colonies

The Associated Press

AUGUSTA — Wildlife officials are seeking volunteers to help determine the effect of a lethal fungus on Maine's bat population.

White nose syndrome has wiped out entire bat-hibernating colonies in the Northeast and in Maine.

The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and Maine Audubon are asking volunteers to identify bat colonies across Maine to establish a baseline for breeding bats. Colonies are typically found in attics, barns, abandoned buildings, garages and other structures. Peak bat activity takes place through the end of July.

Because of white nose, many bat colonies in Maine didn't even have roosting bats last year. Maine Audubon says of the 45 colonies identified by volunteers last year, only 12 had bats that were roosting — and none of them raised any pups.

Learn more at: www.maineaudubon.org/bats

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