Why New Hampshire wants help counting its bats

White-nose syndrome has led to significant declines in bat populations in the Northeast.

(CNN)New Hampshire is going big on bats this summer.

Fish and Game Department officials are looking for volunteers to go bat counting. They're asking participants to keep track of bats they see on their property and elsewhere as part of a statewide bat counting project.
Barns and church steeples often serve as summer homes for female bats and their offspring.
With a disease called white-nose syndrome causing significant declines in bat populations throughout the Northeast, biologists believe it's important to monitor these "maternity colonies."
    White-nose syndrome is a fungal disease that's been killing bats across North America, the National Park Service says.
      The information garnered from the bat count will be used to fill gaps in existing data about New Hampshire's bat population.
      The state's two most-common bat species are the little brown bat and the big brown bat.