Hibernating bats infected with White Nose Syndrome. The fungus is not usually visible if bats are found dead.

Watch for bats in winter, living or dead

Biologists want reports of any sightings when bats are supposed to be hibernating, or roosting sites

B.C. environment ministry biologists are asking the public to watch and report bat sightings this winter, as they try to track a disease that has killed millions of bats in eastern and central Canada and the U.S.

White Nose Syndrome is a fungal disease that kills bats during their winter hibernation period. It is believed to have been introduced to North America and to spread primarily through bat to bat contact. No cases have been reported in western North America so far.

B.C. biologists are working to understand how to protect bats from the syndrome and how to help populations should the disease arrive.

If you see bats flying during the day, dead or dying bats or the location of winter bat roosting sites, provincial biologists are asking you to report sightings at 250-387-9500.

More information on B.C. bats and White Nose Syndrome, see the “current issues” section at the ministry’s wildlife website.