The DNR has been watching for the arrival of white-nose syndrome, which causes white fuzz to grow on hibernating bats' noses, ears and wings and forces bats to wake up prematurely and burn up their fat stores. The disease has killed millions of bats in the eastern United States since 2007.
DNR scientists have been inspecting hibernating bats in caves and mines for signs of the disease for each of the last three years. They plan to begin their fourth search this week.
The DNR also is asking the public to report any unusual bat behavior such as bats flying around in January or February or dead bats at summer roosts during those months.