Fungus decimates Minnesota’s largest bat colony

DULUTH, Minn. — The number of bats counted in the Soudan Underground Mine has dropped 70 percent due to white-nose syndrome, according to the annual survey of the state’s largest bat wintering area.

Researchers have known since 2013 that the deadly fungus was present on some bats that spend their winter deep underground in the former iron ore mine near Tower. Last winter was the first time they had seen hundreds of dead bats outside the mine during winter months, a sure sign of white-nose syndrome.

This winter, the deaths have mounted to catastrophic levels.

Read more at the Twin Cities Pioneer Press

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