Photo by Pat Schlarbaum
Conservation Award Goes to Executive Director and Husband!
Mike Meetz, right, surprised Bruce and Marlene Ehresman with the 2012 Olav Smedal Conservation Award. Originally established by the Ames Daily Tribune to honor Smedal, their revered outdoor writer, it is now sponsored by the Ames Chapter of the Izaak Walton League. Ehresmans have been involved in conservation issues and events for decades in Iowa, but the award caught them both off-guard. "To join those who have preceded us in receiving this award is as much an honor as the award, itself," said Marlene. To read about some of the couple's life in conservation, visit the Ames Tribune website.
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Iowa DNR Provides Guidance and Caution About White-Nose Syndrome & Rehabilitation of Bat Species!
There aren't many licensed wildlife rehabilitators in Iowa who care for our various bat species, but those who do should take note: White-Nose Syndrome is knocking on Iowa's door!
Daryl Howell, Iowa Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) zoologist and environmental specialist, contacted IWC executive director Marlene Ehresman recently and shared his concerns regarding Iowa's bats and their rehabilitation. While very few of Iowa's licensed wildlife rehabilitators rehabilitate bats (Marlene is one of them), these few should know about important changes regarding caring for these mammals. If any bat, especially if it may have come from an area with natural caves, is found during the winter that has questionable symptoms such as tattered wings or white fungus on the nose (see US FIsh and WIldlife site for information on symptoms), immediately contact either Howell (515-281-8524; Daryl.Howell@dnr.iowa.gov) or Ehresman (515-233-1379; firstname.lastname@example.org) or a local wildlife rehabilitator.
Wildlife rehabilitators must also now use extra precautions when over-wintering or rehabilitating bats. Tree
foliage-roosting bat species, such as the Silver-haired Bat, and cave-roosting bat species, such as the Big Brown Bat, must be kept
isolated from each other. This means home-based rehabilitators must
keep these two groups in completely separate houses, while facilities
with appropriate ventilation will need to keep them in separate
isolation rooms. Additionally, prior to release the bat(s) must be thoroughly examined to ensure that no bat has developed the fungus while in captivity. Upon release, each bat must go back to the area from
which they were originally found.
See Creature Feature for more detailed information about White-Nose Syndrome.