White-nose syndrome hits bats at Cumberland Gap

MIDDLESBORO, Ky. (AP) — White-nose syndrome, a disease deadly to bats, has been confirmed at Cumberland Gap National Historical Park.

Park Superintendent Mark Woods said laboratory tests on three bats from the park's more than 30 caves tested positive for the disease.

White-nose syndrome is known to be transmitted primarily from bat to bat, but it can be carried between caves by humans on clothing, footwear, and caving gear.

White-nose syndrome is not known to affect people, pets, or livestock but is harmful or lethal to hibernating bats.

The disease was first detected in New York State in 2006 and has killed more than 5.5 million cave-dwelling bats in the eastern third of the U.S. It has been confirmed in 19 states.

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