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According to the LSU AgCenter, there are currently 12 species of bats in Louisiana.  Although they can be scary, these flying nocturnal mammals are extremely beneficial to humans as they eat a lot of insects and pollenate tons of plants.  Unfortunately, these denizens of the night might be in danger due to a very specific fungus that has just been found in the Sportsman's Paradise.

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According to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), results from a surveillance sampling conducted last year in Natchitoches Parish revealed that Pseudogymnoascus destructans was present in local Brazilian free-tailed bats.  This vile-sounding fungus can be fatal, and if it spreads - it could be devastating to Louisiana's bat population.

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Photo by Lauren DeCicca/Getty Images
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Destructans is not a communicable disease per se, as it isn't contagious to humans or even other animals.  This psychrophilic (cold-loving) fungus passes from bat to bat when they hibernate.  When infected, the bats can develop a condition known as "White-Nose Syndrome."  This condition is reportedly responsible for killing more than 6 million bats in North America since it was first detected in Albany, New York in February of 2006.

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The fungus infects the bat's skin and irritates them to the point that they can't sleep.  That's when they start behaving erratically and doing things like flying during the daytime hours.  All of that extra activity burns off fat reserves they need to survive hibernation.  Without it, the bats starve to death.

Martin JanÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂa
Martin JanÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂa
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Since Louisiana has a much milder winter than northern states that have experienced this same issue, the fungus may not spread as fast or as far here.  LDWF officials are conducting further studies to ascertain the full impact on our states night-time fliers.

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Louisiana Vampire Author Anne Rice's New Orleans Mansion is For Sale

Before famed Louisiana author Anne Rice died in December of 2021, she brought us an incredible wealth of literature. Starting in 1976 with her first published book Interview with the Vampire, Rice captured the imagination of fans around the world. In total she penned 36 novels, including four under the nom de plume A.N. Roquelaure, two more under a different pen name (Anne Rampling), one with her son, Christopher Rice, and one non-fiction book. Her success brought her enough money to purchase this historic (and reportedly haunted) mansion in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Now, this magnificent piece of literary history is up for sale - and it's even been reduced. The price has been slashed by $600,000, and now sits just below the $4 million mark.

If you like what you see, and you'd like to live like the Louisiana Vampire Queen Anne Rice did - just visit the realtor's page and put in an offer!