The yogurt cure: can 'good' bacteria save bats?
“THINK YOGURT FOR bats,” says Cori Lausen. “We’re working with probiotics.” But instead of eating this cocktail of “good” microbes, they get doused with it. The plan sounds a bit, er, batty but it could be a lifesaver.
Right now, bats across North America are emerging from hibernation. They are the lucky ones. Over the past decade, a fungal disease has killed millions during their winter slumber. The death rate from white-nose syndrome can be between 90 and 100 per cent, there is no cure and it threatens to annihilate entire species. That is not only terrible news for them, but also for us, because bats eat insects that spread diseases and their voracious appetite means farmers use far less pesticide. With a race on to stop the deadly fungus spreading, Lausen, a biologist with the
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