I read about this problem - White Nosed Syndrome - in 2007 or 2008 and recall writing about it here. I was listening to the radio last night and evidently the problem is rapidly spreading thought New England and into mid-Appalachia. No one knows what is waking these bats from hibernation in the middle of winter. They leave the caves in search of insects (to eat) but there's nothing to be found since there is little insect life in February. So basically the bats starve to death.
This is quite alarming in the sense that no one knows what is causing WNS, and the entire eradication of bats will wreak havoc on the food chain - especially since they eat their body weight in insects every day. At this rate of die-off, bats will entirely disappear from New England in the next few years.
Add this to the list of ecosystems that have been collapsing in the past few years (amphibians, honey bees, plankton die-off, and most other ecosystems that I am not even familiar with) due to reasons entirely unknown. It is quite startling that life as we knew it on planet earth will be changing drastically forever. Fortunately I have no children to whom I'll leave this well-used planet that's effectively been destroyed in the past hundred and fifty years - probably the most dramatically in my lifetime. Small stuff, as there are more stars in the sky than all the grains of sand on all the beaches in the world. There's probably another life sustaining planet out there somewhere.