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Economic importance of bats in agriculture

January 1, 2011

White-nose syndrome (WNS) and the increased development of wind-power facilities are threatening populations of insectivorous bats in North America. Bats are voracious predators of nocturnal insects, including many crop and forest pests. We present here analyses suggesting that loss of bats in North America could lead to agricultural losses estimated at more than $3.7 billion/year. Urgent efforts are needed to educate the public and policy-makers about the ecological and economic importance of insectivorous bats and to provide practical conservation solutions.

Publication Year 2011
Title Economic importance of bats in agriculture
DOI 10.1126/science.1201366
Authors Justin G. Boyles, Paul M. Cryan, Gary F. McCracken, Thomas H. Kunz
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Science
Index ID 70003553
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Fort Collins Science Center