Research on White Nose Syndrome (WNS)
WNS is an emerging infectious disease of hibernating bats first documented in New York in 2006. It has since spread throughout the eastern USA (see most recent map here) and killed millions of bats. It is named for its causative agent, the white fungus (Pseudogymnoascus destructans) that grows on bat muzzles, wings, and ears.
In collaboration with Dr. Ken Field’s immunology lab at Bucknell University, the Reeder lab has been conducting WNS research since the beginning, working in the areas of:
- Torpor use/energy balance in affected hibernating bats
- Immune competence
- The influence of hibernaculum microclimate on disease progression
- Species differences in susceptibility and survivorship
- Potential treatments/alternate mitigation strategies
See the Publications page for reports of our findings.
This work has been generously funded by a number of agencies, including US Fish & Wildlife Service, the State Wildlife Grants Program, the Wildlife Management Institute, the PA Department of Conservation of Natural Resources, the WoodTiger Fund, Bat Conservation International, and the National Speleological Society.