Ecology News – Help I’ve Found an Injured Bat

With the warmer days of early Spring, bats are starting to wake up and venture outside to forage for food. But as the nights are still so cold, there is a risk that they will get caught out and can end up on the ground without the energy needed to fly back to their roost. When grounded, a bat is in danger not only from the elements, but also cats and other animals looking for a quick meal.

So what should you do if you find an injured or grounded bat?

While bats are protected by law and usually, we would advise staying clear, you can handle bats if they are in trouble and need some human help.

First though remember, never touch or handle a bat without wearing a pair of gloves (leather or gardening would be suitable) as there is a very small risk of rabies transmission through broken skin.

Secondly, assess the situation and if you can safely do so (and remember your gloves) find a box that you can contain the bat in, for example, a shoebox with small air holes. For more information on how to safely contain a bat click the link here.

And finally, call the National Bat Helpline on 0345 1300 228 – for free help and advice – or your local bat group if you can find them on Google. They will be able to put you in touch with a local bat carer who will be able to come and take the bat away for a little TLC including some well-earned mealworms for lunch!

A positive outcome

Luckily Anca Pudwell, a Principal Engineer from our Bishop’s Stortford Office knew just what to do when she found this brown long-eared bat on the ground in her garden last week.

Members of her local bat group were quick to the rescue and are now looking after the bat until it has reached a suitable release weight. In April, the local bat group will come back to Anca’s garden to release it back into the wild.

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