Deaths of bats in western North Dakota caused by fungus

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) The North Dakota Game and Fish Department says a fungus that affects bats caused the death of little brown bats in the western part of the state.

The agency said Wednesday that the bats died of white-nose syndrome.

Early this month, the Southwest District Health Unit in Dickinson contacted the Game and Fish Department about dead bats found in Medora.

Six were submitted to the National Wildlife Health Center in Madison, Wisconsin, and the bats all tested positive for the fungus that causes white-nose syndrome, a deadly disease of hibernating bats.

Officials say it's the second time the fungus has been detected in North Dakota but the first documented deaths in bats in the state attributed to white-nose syndrome.