Bats | St. Louis Public Radio


The Indiana bat is on the endangered species list.
Provided by the Missouri Department of Conservation

The Missouri Department of Conservation is preparing to survey the bat population in the northern half of the state.

Tony Elliott is a resource scientist with the conservation department.  He said the survey will focus primarily on two species: the Indiana bat and the northern long-eared bat.

Students from Jennings High School came to a bat survey at the Bellefontaine Cemetery on Sept. 12, 2016, to learn how to track bats using scientific equipment.
Eli Chen | St. Louis Public Radio

The cemetery is an odd place to be at night. But for scientists who study bats, it's an opportunity to observe wildlife in an urban habitat. 

Last week, scientists and volunteers from the Whitney R. Harris World Ecology Center at the University of Missouri-St. Louis gathered at the Bellefontaine Cemetery to conduct a bat survey. The study continues the work some researchers started in 2014, when they looked for bats in a different section of the cemetery in a larger effort to catalog biodiversity there.

Marvin Moriarty | U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

The fungal disease white-nose syndrome and other threats to bat survival will be at the top of the agenda of an international meeting being held this week in St. Louis.

The conference is expected to draw about 350 bat specialists from government agencies, academia, environmental consulting firms and non-profits in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

(Marvin Moriarity/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

Updated at 4:10 p.m. to include quotes from IDNR and 4:23 p.m. to include map.

Officials in Illinois have found the first cases of a devastating bat disease known as white-nose syndrome in that state.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources says laboratory tests confirmed the fungal disease in two species of bat in four counties. Those include Monroe County in the Metro East, LaSalle County in north-central Illinois, and Hardin and Pope Counties in the southern part of the state.

(Marvin Moriarity/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

Biologists are tracking the Indiana bat at their summer locations through sites in Missouri and Illinois, hoping to gather information that will help numbers rebound for the endangered species.

The bat hibernates in caves in the winter and summers in forested areas, most frequently in the central United States.

A disease that has killed more than 5.5 million bats in the eastern United States and Canada is making its way west. White-nose syndrome has now been diagnosed in three Missouri bats — the first confirmed cases west of the Mississippi. And scientists say it won't stop there.

(Marvin Moriarity/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

Updated at 3:00 p.m. to clarify and expand description of white-nose syndrome.

A disease that has killed millions of bats across the eastern U.S. has been confirmed in Missouri for the first time.

Provided by George Johnson | Beacon archives

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: July 15, 2008 - Bats are dying. A plague has killed tens of thousands of them in the Northeastern states this spring. The cause of "white nose syndrome," named for a white fungus that appears on bats' noses and wings, is a mystery to biologists.