FWC warns cavers about bat disease - WFLA News Channel 8

FWC warns cavers about bat disease

Posted: Updated:
Image courtesy FWC Image courtesy FWC
TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is asking cavers to take precautions to prevent disease affecting bats from moving into Florida. The agency issued a press release today saying the disease known as white nose syndrome (WNS), which is deadly to bats, was recently documented in north Georgia. 

WNS has not yet been detected in Florida. FWC biologists say WNS can be spread by spores found on clothing and equipment of people moving between caves, as well as by bat to bat contact.  No human illnesses have been attributed to WNS, although FWC officials are urging the public to not handle sick, injured or dead bats.

So far, WNS has been detected in 22 states and in five Canadian provinces. The name comes from the white fungus found covering the muzzles and wings of hibernating bats. "In Florida, bats typically spend very little time hibernating," said FWC Wildlife Biologist Melissa Tucker. "But, we have discovered several Florida caves cold enough during the winter months to support growth of the fungus."

Bats affected by WNS don't always display the typical white fungal appearance. Some may appear emaciated or severely dehydrated. Other signs of WNS include bats flying outside or near cave openings during the daylight hours and dead or dying bats on the ground, usually in the winter.

For additional information on WNS, you can log onto www.whitenosesyndrome.org

 

  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • Removal of tons of stinky rice near Port of Tampa begins

    Removal of tons of stinky rice near Port of Tampa begins

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 5:06 PM EDT2014-07-30 21:06:23 GMT
    The nasty stench near the Port of Tampa may get better soon. Dump trucks worked to remove some of the 1,000 tons of rotting rice on the private land Wednesday. 8 On Your Side discovered the shipment of bad rice, rotting under tarps on property owned by Tampa Marine Terminals on Tuesday.
    The nasty stench near the Port of Tampa may get better soon. Dump trucks worked to remove some of the 1,000 tons of rotting rice on the private land Wednesday. 8 On Your Side discovered the shipment of bad rice, rotting under tarps on property owned by Tampa Marine Terminals on Tuesday.
  • SAFETY ALERT: Saltwater bacteria kills 1 in Sarasota

    SAFETY ALERT: Saltwater bacteria kills 1 in Sarasota

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 3:50 PM EDT2014-07-30 19:50:00 GMT
    WFLA file photo.WFLA file photo.
    A death in Sarasota County has health officials reminding people about a bacteria in Florida's coastal waters that has the potential to cause serious illness, even death. Other counties in Tampa Bay have reported cases of Vibrio vulnificus.
    A death in Sarasota County has health officials reminding people about a bacteria in Florida's coastal waters that has the potential to cause serious illness, even death. Other counties in Tampa Bay have reported cases of Vibrio vulnificus.
  • An app that repels mosquitoes? We test it.

    An app that repels mosquitoes? We test it.

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:53 AM EDT2014-07-30 15:53:07 GMT
    Now, there's an app that claims to keep mosquitoes away. You can download the anti-mosquito sonic repeller on your smart phone.
    Now, there's an app that claims to keep mosquitoes away. You can download the anti-mosquito sonic repeller on your smart phone.

  • NewsMore>>

  • Pool parasite invades Pinellas County

    Pool parasite invades Pinellas County

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 9:19 PM EDT2014-07-31 01:19:12 GMT
    Health officials say the parasite that causes 'Crypto' could be in your pool. Health officials say the parasite that causes 'Crypto' could be in your pool.
    Health Department officials in Pinellas County are putting out a warning about a parasite that can lurk in swimming pools and water parks.

    Health Department officials in Pinellas County are putting out a warning about a parasite that can lurk in swimming pools and water parks. And, if it invades your body, you're in for a rough ride - it's called Cryptosporidium.


  • Lakeland gymnastics coach accused of sex with minor

    Lakeland gymnastics coach accused of sex with minor

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 7:56 PM EDT2014-07-30 23:56:59 GMT
    A man who works as a gymnastics coach in Lakeland has been accused of having sex with a 13-year-old girl.
    A man who works as a gymnastics coach in Lakeland has been accused of having sex with a 13-year-old girl.
  • Bay area man headed to prison following sexual assault conviction

    Bay area man headed to prison following sexual assault conviction

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 7:16 PM EDT2014-07-30 23:16:02 GMT
    Hulsey, 22, was serve at least 25 years of his prison sentence. Hulsey, 22, was serve at least 25 years of his prison sentence.
    A 22-year-old Bay area man was sentenced to more than 36 years behind bars Wednesday for his role in the 2012 sexual battery of a 12-year-old girl.Circuit Court Judge Cynthia Newton handed down the sentence for Zachary Thomas Hulsey.
    A 22-year-old Bay area man was sentenced to more than 36 years behind bars Wednesday for his role in the 2012 sexual battery of a 12-year-old girl.Circuit Court Judge Cynthia Newton handed down the sentence for Zachary Thomas Hulsey.
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Dramatic doggie makeovers put new face to pet adoption

    Dramatic doggie makeovers put new face to pet adoption

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 5:14 PM EDT2014-07-29 21:14:31 GMT
    What a difference a bath can make! Millions of shelter dogs across the United States just need a little bit of grooming and TLC in order to shine, as evidenced by these photos.
    What a difference a bath can make! Millions of shelter dogs across the United States just need a little bit of grooming and TLC in order to shine, as evidenced by these photos.
  • 8 ways to save on groceries without coupons

    8 ways to save on groceries without coupons

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 5:07 PM EDT2014-07-29 21:07:49 GMT
    Wikimedia Commons photo by Eja2kWikimedia Commons photo by Eja2k
    ShopSmart magazine sent undercover shoppers through grocery store aisles and discovered plenty of ways to lower your grocery bill.
    ShopSmart magazine sent undercover shoppers through grocery store aisles and discovered plenty of ways to lower your grocery bill.
  • Couple's selfie photobombed by lightning bolt

    Couple's selfie photobombed by lightning bolt

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 11:56 AM EDT2014-07-29 15:56:28 GMT
    A couple vacationing in Mexico was almost hit by lightning, a few sources including Washington Post reported Tuesday.
    A couple vacationing in Mexico was almost hit by lightning, a few sources including Washington Post reported Tuesday.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.