The Nation

Sep 14, 2012 3:05 PM by Lauren Molenburg

Artificial bat cave built to combat killer disease

CLARKSVILLE, Tennessee (AP) - An attempt to save bats from a deadly fungal disease could be a blueprint for conservationists. Or it might not work at all.

The Nature Conservancy has spent $300,000 to build an artificial bat cave, underground and deep in the woods of northern Middle Tennessee, near Fort Campbell. The first-of-its-kind structure is an innovative attempt to save the flying mammals from the white nose syndrome, which has killed millions of bats from upstate New York, where it was first found in 2006, to deep into Dixie.

It's now up to the bats.

The genius of the artificial cave is that it can be cleaned annually to remove the killer fungus.

Conservancy cave specialist Cory Holliday said the prevalence of the fungus that causes white nose grows over time.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

 

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