BIG WALL BATS
Breeanne K. Jackson; Yosemite National Park; P.O. Box 700, El Portal, CA, 95318; (209) 379-1454; breezy_jackson@nps.gov; Breeanne K. Jackson, Sarah L. Stock, James B. Miller, Eric Bissell
Yosemite climbers frequently encounter roosting bats. However, park managers know little about how climbers may be impacting bats, or if climbers may be a vector for spreading Pseudogymoascus destructans, the fungus causing white-nose syndrome (WNS). Since WNS was first documented in eastern North America in 2006, more than 5.7 million bats have died and entire roost colonies have been wiped out. Recent detections of WNS in three species of bats in Washington state underscore the potential for WNS to travel great distances in little time--potentially through human vectors. The vertical cliffs of Yosemite, such as El Capitan, are known for world class climbing, yet virtually nothing is known about the 17 bat species (including 5 California species of concern and 6 species susceptible to WNS) that roost upon them. Scientists have identified cavers as having spread Pd between caves and disturbing bats but whether and to what extent climbers play a role is yet unknown. We are launching a multi-faceted outreach and citizen-science program to engage climbers in bat conservation and describe how bats use the high cliffs of Yosemite to roost and hibernate.
Yosemite Restoration II