- Associated Press - Sunday, June 15, 2014

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. (AP) - State wildlife officials are looking for volunteers to help monitor the bat population this summer.

Officials from the Georgia Department of Natural Resources said in a statement that they’re looking for Georgians to participate in the summer emergence count, a project led by the agency’s nongame conservation section.

Officials say the department is concerned the state’s bat population may be declining because of the spread of white nose syndrome, a disease that can be fatal to bats and has been traced to Georgia and about two dozen other states. According to Bat Conservation International, the fungal disease has killed more than 5.7 million bats since it was discovered in a New York cave in 2006.

Potential participants can find information on how to get involved online.

Online: www.georgiawildlife.com/Bat-Roost-Monitoring

www.batcon.org