Field Notes
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Field Notes Entry   
White-Nose Syndrome: Building Capacity in States and Tribal Governments
Midwest Region, September 24, 2019
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Table 1. WNS Grants to States and Tribes Program funding by Year in the Midwest.
Table 1. WNS Grants to States and Tribes Program funding by Year in the Midwest. - Photo Credit: R. Geboy, Regional WNS Coordinator

A passion for wildlife conservation, more specifically bat conservation, continues to shine bright through a diverse collection of partners working to address white-nose syndrome in bats, including both state and, more recently, tribal partners.  The most recent 2019 White-nose Syndrome Grants to States and Tribal Notice of Funding Opportunity saw a record number of 41 proposals, totaling just under $1.6M in cumulative request for financial assistance. The Service targeted up to $1.2 million (up to $1 million for States and up to $200,000 for Tribes) for this competitive funding opportunity in 2019 to help state and tribal management agencies develop and implement strategies to conserve species of bats affected by or vulnerable to white-nose syndrome.  


As the national response to white-nose syndrome evolves, partners located throughout the Midwest continue to demonstrate their staple of persistence and determination to understand and conserve a treasured and ecologically important resource, bats. Midwestern states were not only some of the first to respond to white-nose syndrome on a national level, but they continue to be among those serving in national, regional, and state level capacities for the betterment of all bat species in North America. In similar fashion, one of the nearly 600 federally recognized tribal governments, the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community, looks to establish the same precedent of leadership by being one of first tribal governments to implement the North American Bat Monitoring Program on their lands in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

As the white-nose syndrome regional coordinator for Interior Region 3-Great Lakes, I remain optimistic that building and strengthening state and tribal programs throughout my area of the country will continue to translate into amazing conservation efforts for all affected species, especially the federally listed Indiana, gray and northern long-eared bats. The level of state and tribal commitment has brought more than $1.8 million in funding to help with surveillance, bat population monitoring, identification and conservation of important bat habitats; development of actions that curtail the spread of white-nose syndrome; assistance with research projects, including numerous projects focused on innovative approaches to manage and/or treat WNS; development response and bat conservation plans; and outreach.

See below for a recap of the awards, by fiscal year, provided from the USFWS to state and tribal wildlife agencies through our WNS Grants to States Program:

(See Table)

Please visit www.whitenosesyndrome.org for more information on The WNS National Response Plan.

Contact Info: Richard Geboy, 812-334-4261 Ext 210, richard_geboy@fws.gov

Contact Info: Richard Geboy, 812-334-4261 Ext 210, richard_geboy@fws.gov
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