Widespread Bat White-Nose Syndrome Fungus, Northeastern China
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In the summer of 2014 and winter of 2015, we collected 385 samples from hibernacula surfaces at 12 sites in 3 provinces and 1 municipality (Figure, panel A) and 215 samples from 9 species of bats at 10 sites (summer: Rhinolophus ferrumequinum, Rhinolophus pusillus, Myotis adversus, Myotis macrodactylus, Myotis pilosus, Myotis chinensis, Murina usseriensis; winter: R. ferrumequinum, Murina leucogaster, Myotis petax). During the summer, P. destructans was widely distributed across the study region with positive samples (determined on the basis of qPCR results) obtained from cave surfaces at 9 of 12 sites and from bats at 2 of the 9 sites where bats were sampled (Figure, panel A). Prevalence of P. destructans was low during summer in the environment (mean prevalence across sites 0.06 ± 0.03) and in bats. Bats of 3 species tested positive for P. destructans in the summer: M. macrodactylus (1/10), M. chinensis (1/1), and M. ussuriensis (1/1). P. destructans was not detected in bats of 4 other species, of which >20 individual animals of each species were sampled (R. ferrumequinum, R. pusillus, M. pilosus, and M. adversus). The low prevalence of P. destructans in bats and on hibernacula surfaces in China during the summer was similar to comparable results from studies in North America (6).