Tell Congress to Save Our Bats Now
White-nose syndrome is a newly emergent wildlife disease that has been devastating bat populations in eastern North America since 2006. Effective response to this unprecedented wildlife crisis has been severely hampered by a shortage of funding within federal and state wildlife agencies. The survival of several bat species, and billions of dollars in pest-control services provided by bats to U.S. farmers, are at stake.
The widespread demise of bats could have large-scale consequences. Bats are the primary predators of night-flying insects, many of which are serious pests to crops and trees managed for timber production. Researchers have estimated that the loss of bats to white-nose syndrome, combined with bat deaths attributable to proliferating wind-energy development, could cost American agriculture at least $3.7 billion per year -- and potentially as much as $53 billion per year.
Congress needs to provide at least $10.8 million in the 2012 budget to support white-nose syndrome research, planning, coordination and management. Congress also needs to pass the Wildlife Disease Emergency Act, which will create a structure and dedicated funding for rapidly responding to fast-moving wildlife illnesses.
We need your help now to address this wildlife emergency. Please submit messages to Congress by filling in the form below.