Caves in the Smokies closed to protect bats from possible face fungus

Bat

Caves in the Smokies are being closed to everyone, to prevent a fungus from killing bats.  If you listened to our “Caving in the Smokies” espisode of the GoSmoky.com Radio show (www.blogtalkradio.com/gosmoky) a couple of months ago, we talked about how disturbing bats during their hibernation can kill them.  They don’t die immediately, but they can burn up too much of their fat stores and starve to death if they are awakened too much during the “few bugs” winter.  It looks like this is a similar problem they are trying to prevent now.  The fungus can cause the bats to wake up too much during the winter-time before bugs are avaliable, which means they could starve due to few bugs as well.  The fungus doesn’t seem to be a problem yet in the Smokies, but they are closing the caves just to be sure… Read the article below for more…

http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2009/apr/03/smokies-closing-caves-protect-bats-killer-fungus/

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3 responses to “Caves in the Smokies closed to protect bats from possible face fungus

  1. White nose syndrome is a still little understood occurence that is causing a great deal of concern in the caving community for a more specific update about it check out the national speleological societies page on the subject at http://www.caves.org/grotto/dcg/white-nose.html

  2. I thought the caves were already closed?

    • Sorry about it taking so long to reply to your post. For some reason, it went to “spam comments.” True, the caves have been closed for awhile to regular visitors. When the park did was close them completely, even to research and professionals who WERE able to get inside if they were approved.

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