The resolution on the impacts of white-nose syndrome on bats was adopted May, 2009.
WHEREAS White-Nose Syndrome is an affliction that is killing hundreds of thousands of bats in the eastern United States; and
WHEREAS fatalities at affected caves and mines often near 100%, and in just three winters since its discovery in Upstate New York, this has become a crisis that has spread across nine states as far south as Virginia; If this affliction continues to spread into the Mid-Atlantic States and the Midwest, extinctions of some species are possible within the next few years; and
WHEREAS there is an urgent need to understand this dire threat, immediate research funding is required to identify causes and solutions, extinctions are possible, even among species that are now widespread and abundant; and
WHEREAS North American bats have never faced so dire a threat; and
WHEREAS this affliction has the potential to rapidly spread across the U.S. and Canada, creating an ecological disaster; and
WHEREAS like birds by day, bats are primary predators of insects that fly at night, including many of our most costly agricultural and forest pests; and
WHEREAS the response to White-Nose Syndrome has been limited, with insufficient support for critical research; and
WHEREAS critically needed emergency funds from government agencies have been limited and insufficient to meet growing research needs; and
WHEREAS critically needed emergency funds from non-governmental organizations have been invaluable but insufficient to meet growing needs for research and monitoring;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED on this 28th day of May, 2009 that members of the North American Society for Bat Research have voiced grave concern regarding the future of bat populations affected by the White-Nose Syndrome; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that funding for well-designed, peer-reviewed research into this devastating affliction is urgently needed before the damage becomes potentially irreversible.