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Fungus targeting bats found in west Missouri

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A fungus that has killed millions of bats around eastern U.S. has landed in western Missouri.

The Kansas City Star reports (http://bit.ly/LYDPI3 ) bats afflicted with "white nose syndrome" were found last winter in east-central Missouri, and before that the virus was found among bats in Missouri caves near the Mississippi River.

Tony Elliott, with the Missouri Conservation Department, says the fungus was found recently among three tri-colored bats in a limestone quarry in Jackson County. Officials aren't identifying the location to prevent curious people from visiting the site and spreading the fungus.

White-nose syndrome doesn't infect people, pets or livestock, but it's estimated to have killed more than 5 million cave-dwelling bats nationwide since 2006.

Elliott says there haven't been any confirmed bat deaths from the disease in Missouri.

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Information from: The Kansas City Star, http://www.kcstar.com

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