BEDFORD, Ind. (AP) - The caves in a southern Indiana national park have been closedto visitors for at least a year to slow the spread of a diseasethat's ravaging bat populations in Eastern states.
Federal officials closed the Hoosier National Forest's caves onMonday.
Forest Supervisor Ken Day says white-nose syndrome would posea risk of extinction to endangered Indiana and gray bats if itcontinues to spread and reaches Indiana.
The disease characterized by a white fungus on bats' muzzles andwings has killed about one million bats of six different speciessince it was discovered in February 2006.
Day says the park's caves will remain open to scientists forresearch purposes and to determine if the disease has reached theIndiana caves and mines where bats hibernate.
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