Bat disease found in two area counties

A fungal disease, deadly to bats, has been confirmed in 15 Georgia counties, including Habersham and Dawson. The fungus that causes the disease has been found in six other counties, but so far there have been obvious signs of the disease and the testing for the disease in two other counties was inconclusive.

(See map. Brown=Disease Confirmed. Orange: Fungus Detected. Yellow: Inconclusive. Courtesy Georgia Department of Natural Resources (GDNR).)

The fungus was first detected in Georgia eleven years ago and has killed large numbers of bat in caves around the state. Last year, it was found in a manmade structure for the first time – a drainage culvert.

In another development, the Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) and GDNR recently signed a historic Bat Conservation Funding Programmatic Agreement that will transfer conservation funding from Georgia DOT to GDNR for the purpose of land acquisition and management to maximize bat conservation and reduce associated impacts to transportation project timelines.  

Currently in Georgia there are three species of bats listed on the endangered species list by the USFWS, with a fourth species proposed to be added. With the impending addition of the fourth bat species to the endangered species list, endangered bats would now exist in all 159 counties in the state compared to 30 counties with the initial three species.

Click here for more on this story: White-nose Syndrome in Georgia Bats | Department Of Natural Resources Division (