On the Radio: Fungal detection means new precautions at Maquoketa Caves


Photo by USFWS/Southeast, Flickr.

Listen to this week’s radio segment here or read the transcript below. This week’s episode discusses the emergence of white-nose syndrome in the Maquoketa Caves.

With trace amounts of the white-nose syndrome found on a bat in the Maquoketa Caves, Iowans should keep in mind new precautions.

This is the Iowa Environmental Focus.

A sample taken from a bat in the Maquoketa Caves in northeast Iowa revealed low-levels of the white-nose syndrome fungus – a fungus that has devastated bat populations in North America. This comes after the Maquoketa Caves were closed for nearly two years to prevent the fungus from spreading to Iowa.

This means cave goers will be subject to new rules to prevent the fungus from leaving the Maquoketa Caves. Precautions include having visitors step on mats containing disinfection solution when leaving the caves.

Additionally, visitors are asked to not to wear the same clothing they wore to the Maquoketa Caves when visiting other caves.

For more information on white-nose syndrome, visit IowaEnvironmentalFocus.org.

I’m Jerry Schnoor from the UI Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research.

Thank You.

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