Defenders of Wildlife has petitioned for the bat’s listing since 2016

“Bats play an incredibly important role in ecosystems, and protecting them should be of paramount importance.  Defenders of Wildlife will continue advocating for this important ESA-listing as the proposal moves forward.”

Andrew Carter, senior conservation policy analyst for Defenders of Wildlife.
Washington, DC

Citing the ravaging effects of white-nose syndrome, a disease that has killed millions of bats across the country, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) announced it is proposing to list the tricolored bat as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The majority of tricolored bat colonies have been hit by the deadly disease, causing die-offs of 90-100 percent across most of its range.   

Image
Roosting trio of tricolored bats
USFWS

Defenders of Wildlife joined the Center for Biological Diversity and filed a petition seeking protections for this species in 2016.  

“Bats play an incredibly important role in ecosystems, and protecting them should be of paramount importance,” said Andrew Carter, senior conservation policy analyst for Defenders of Wildlife. “Defenders of Wildlife will continue advocating for this important ESA-listing as the proposal moves forward.” 

Tricolored bats are found in 39 states and D.C. as well as Canada, Mexico and several Central American countries.  

According to the FWS it is estimated that bats, including the tricolored bat, contribute more than $3 billion directly to the U.S. economy through pollination and pest control, with other studies citing their impact may in fact be in the tens of billions.   

The next step in the listing process will be to review comments and make a final decision on the listing proposal. Defenders of Wildlife will be submitting comments supporting an endangered designation for the species, as well as advocating for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to designate critical habitat for the species which the service has so far said they would not do.  

For over 75 years, Defenders of Wildlife has remained dedicated to protecting all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With a nationwide network of nearly 2.1 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife for generations to come. To learn more, please visit https://defenders.org/newsroom or follow us on X @Defenders.

  

Media Contact

Communications Specialist
hhammer@defenders.org
(202) 772-0295
Director of Conservation Policy

Related

Image
Lesser Long-Nosed Bat

News

Image
Blackfeet Nation Birch Creek - hay bails in foreground
Washington, DC

Defenders Supports New Bill Expanding Investments in Soil Health and Wildlife Habitat on Private Land

Defenders of Wildlife today announced its support for H.R. 8754 introduced by Rep. Julia Brownley (D-CA). If passed, the Saving Our Interconnected Lives (SOIL) Act will amend the Farm Bill to encourage agricultural producers to voluntarily conserve soil and wildlife habitat on their land by prioritizing applications for projects that would address both concerns under the Department of Agriculture’s Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP).
Image
2010.12.27 - Florida Manatee - Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge - Florida - Keith Ramos - USFWS
Washington, DC

Defenders Opposes “Breathtakingly Awful” Attempt to Gut Endangered Species Act with Appalling Rewrite

Defenders of Wildlife opposes one of the worst-ever attempts to gut the Endangered Species Act, the “ESA Amendments Act of 2024.” Sponsored by Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-AR) chair of the U.S. House of Representatives Natural Resources Committee, the draft bill being heard today in the Subcommittee on Water, Wildlife and Fisheries demolishes many of the core tenets of the landmark conservation bill, warps its foundational reliance on best available science and increases the potential for political interference.