Help Save Bats from Deadly Epidemic
With time running out for North America's bats, conservation groups, caving organizations, organic farmers, anti-toxics groups, and others have joined with some of the nation's leading bat scientists to call for substantially increased funding to respond to white-nose syndrome -- the disease that has been wiping out bats in the eastern United States over the last four years. Written testimony submitted to Congress on May 14 outlined the urgent need for more resources to be funneled toward this crisis.
But Congressional members need to hear from individuals who care about bats, too. They need to know that people from around the country, and in particular, their own constituents, are deeply concerned about disappearing bat populations and the implications for ecosystems.
Bats are our allies in controlling insect crop pests, and they otherwise help to maintain a healthy balance of insect populations within natural communities. While bats are the only true flying mammals, and represent one of the most diverse group of mammals on the planet, they have been studied relatively little and are underappreciated by most people. Nonetheless, the loss of bats could have severe repercussions for other wildlife, ecosystems, and humans. Bat supporters must speak up now, while there’s still a chance for our actions to make a difference to their survival.
Please send a letter today to your senators and Congressional representatives, asking for them to lend their support to increased funding for white-nose syndrome research and management. If you can, please take a few moments to include a personalized statement about what bats mean to you, and how you think their loss may affect your state.