12:38pm

Mon January 30, 2012
Environment

Parks and Wildlife Asks for Help Monitoring CO Bat Population

For the second year in a row, Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials have created a hotline the public can use to report unusual activity within the state’s bat population.

The goal is to watch for signs of White Nose Syndrome, which has killed millions of bats in the U.S. So far the disease has not been detected in Colorado. Randy Hampton, spokesperson for Parks and Wildlife, says scientists want to closely monitor the population for changes.

“If people see dead bats, or bats acting strangely, we want them to give us a call,” he says.

Winter is typically a time when bats hibernate. But research has found that the animals affected by White Nose Syndrome die during this state. Hampton says unusual activity includes bats leaving hibernation sites, or bats moving to the openings of caves.

Since it was first recognized in 2007, White Nose Syndrome has been detected in 19 U.S. states.

The state hotline number is 303-291-7771.