Wildlife Rehabilitators and Bats
Being a wildlife rehabilitator is one of the most rewarding and popular voluntary positions, although some of these positions are paid. Wildlife lovers throughout the country see this role as a way to give something back to the natural world they so adore. Whilst the term wildlife rehabilitator may be most closely associated with injured animals like deer and squirrels, rehabilitators turn no wild animal away, and many are trained in the treatment of all mammals, including bats. Therefore, if you see an injured or sick bat whilst out and about, you may consider calling an animal rescue group to help remove and treat the bat, before hopefully releasing it back into the wild. This option is often mutually beneficial. .
It benefits yourself, as it is the easiest way to get rid of a sick or injured bat. Often, the rehabilitators will come by the place where the bat is in a matter of hours, allowing you to get it off your chest quickly and easily. As these are usually run by charities or public authorities, their services are normally completely free. Contacting wildlife rehabilitators is also beneficial for them, as their entire profession relies on the care of wild animals. As bats are not the most common animals brought in,
it will allow them an element of variety and practice in the treatment of bats. Finally, it is beneficial for the poor bat, which is otherwise almost destined to die a painful death or be predated. By handing it in to the experts, you are giving it the best chance of life possible, including the possibility of eventual release back into the wild.
It is important to remain safe when around a sick bat, as the diseases it carries can be communicable to humans. This could involve keeping your distance, to not allow any harmful pathogens to spread. This is probably a good policy anyway, as when a bat is sick or confused, it may become aggressive and lash out. It is very important to know the signs of a rabid bat. If a bat has rabies, it may have irregular flight patterns, be confused, or even self-mutilate. If you see a bat with any of these symptoms, stay away at all times, as rabies is a deadly disease. Coming close to the bat will not help it anyway, as if a bat gets rabies, it is a death sentence.
To contact a wildlife rehabilitator, there are a number of methods. Firstly, most states have a department with a link on their website. This may list wildlife rehabilitators more local to you, or in some cases actually provide you with a state number to call. Especially in bigger cities, some rehabilitators have offices where you can walk in with your injured or sick bat. You can locate these on most maps. Finally, if you know how to get in touch with your local pest control company, they may direct you to a local wildlife rehabilitator.