The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has called white-nose syndrome the "worst wildlife health crisis in memory." Seven years after the fungal disease first showed up in a cave in upstate New York, the little-understood malady has exploded across North America, spreading to 22 states and five Canadian provinces so far and killing 7 million bats. Seven species have been hit by the disease, including endangered Indiana and gray bats. Biologists have detected the fungal pathogen on another three bat species, including endangered Virginia big-eared bats.
In response to this disaster, bat champions in Congress -- with pressure from the Center for Biological Diversity and thousands of bat-loving constituents like you -- have managed to eke out modest federal funding for research and management of the disease in the past several years.
However, as the federal budgetary process seems to grow more chaotic and contentious this year, it's a frighteningly real possibility that money for white-nose syndrome research will vanish. Loss of that funding would cripple vital research and conservation projects, and it would deal a devastating blow to a campaign that may finally be gaining a handle on how to stop this fatal disease.
Please join dozens of wildlife, conservation and public-health groups, as well as preeminent bat scientists from around the country, and take action using the form below. Send a letter to Congress urging it to renew federal money in 2014 for fighting white-nose syndrome and saving some of nature's best pest controls.
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