eWildlifer Newsletter – August 2015

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The latest eWildlifer newsletter has just been released by The Wildlife Society, and it’s chock full of stories like these:

Horse and Burro Numbers Released in Tense Political Climate

Horses and burros Image Credit: BLM Nevada

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released new estimates on July 7 of free-range horse and burro populations in the western U.S. The BLM estimated there were 47,329 horses and 10,821 burros occupying western rangelands as of March 1, 2015.

These estimates stand in sharp contrast to the maximum number of horses and burros the BLM has determined rangelands can adequately support given the needs of native wildlife and other rangeland uses. This number, known as the Appropriate Management Level (AML), is 26,715 animals. Currently, the feral horse and burro population exceeds the AML by 31,435, and has the documented potential to continue increasing by 20% each year.

Read more.

Natural Yeast Byproduct Inhibits White-Nose Syndrome

 By Dana Kobilinsky

A little brown bat A little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus) found in a mine in Vermont shows signs of white-nose syndrome. In a recently published study, researchers at the University of Illinois found that a naturally occurring compound found in caves inhibits the growth of the fungus that causes white-nose syndrome in bats.
Image Credit: Moriarty Marvin, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Researchers may have found a natural way to treat white-nose syndrome in bats, according to a new study.

In a paper published in the journal Mycopathologia, researchers report that a compound produced by a yeast microbe that occurs in caves inhibits the growth of the fungus which causes white-nose syndrome (WNS) — Pseudogymnoascus destructans. WNS has devastated bat populations in North America, killing millions of bats. The researchers say that not only is it possible that a treatment that uses this compound could inhibit the fungus, but the treatment may minimize disruption to cave ecosystems, since it is naturally found in them.  More . . .

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