Naturalists Wonder if Gas Drove Bats from Cave

9 years 5 months 2 weeks ago April 15, 2007 Apr 15, 2007 Sunday, April 15 2007 Sunday, April 15, 2007 6:59:43 PM CDT in News
Source: (Copyright 2007 The Associated Press All Rights Reserved.)
SPRINGFIELD (AP) - Chlorine gas released after a water main break in Sprinfgfield is a likely cause for the sudden disappearance of endangered gray bats from an area cave. Researchers smelled the gas while exploring Sequiota Cave in December. They were looking for the source of red silt that was killing aquatic life in one fork of the cave's stream. The team traced the path of the red silt that day -- but it wasn't until January that the mystery of the chlorine was solved. It came from chlorinated water that spilled into the cave system when a 125-foot-long sinkhole developed and broke the water main. The sinkhole, southeast of Sequiota Cave, was also the source of the silt. The gas may have driven the bats from the cave, but it's unclear if they could survive the cold.

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