Teacher’s Questions for An Enemy in the Cave


Before reading:

  1. Have you ever seen a bat? Was it in a zoo or in a cave, or somewhere else?
  2. Imagine aliens have landed on Earth. They’ve never heard of or seen a bat. How would you describe bats to aliens?
  3. Where do bats live?


During reading:

  1. When and where did people first start noticing white-nose syndrome in bats in America?
  2. What kinds of things did people find or see that made them think something was wrong with bat colonies?
  3. Is white-nose syndrome spreading, or is it under control?
  4. How many bat species are there in America? How many of those species have been hit with white-nose syndrome?
  5. How many bats have died from white-nose syndrome in America, according to scientists’ estimates?
  6. Name the kind of organism that causes white-nose syndrome.
  7. Name a few symptoms of white-nose syndrome.
  8. Where do scientists think the fungus that causes white-nose syndrome came from?
  9. Name a few ways in which scientists are working to stop the spread and death toll of white-nose syndrome.


After reading:

  1. What makes hibernating bats vulnerable to white-nose syndrome?
  2. White-nose syndrome has been found only in hibernating bats. Do you think this disease indirectly affects other living things? If so, how? (Hint: Think about what bats eat.)



  1. When you’re playing outside, do you ever think about how your playing might affect other living things? Give a few examples of how outdoor recreational activities can impact other organisms.
  2. What are some actions that people can take to limit the impact they have on animals and plants while playing outdoors?