28th January 2010
A licensed bat carer and rescuer admitted a gorgeous micro bat to the Australian Wildlife Hospital this week. The micro bat was identified as a Gould's Long-eared bat and even though she is a fully grown female, she weighed only nine grams.
The micro bat, named Diva, was dehydrated and suffering an injury to her left wing, which was preventing her from flying. Fortunately x-rays taken showed the wing wasn't fractured, just badly bruised, which is lucky for Diva. One of our vets Dr Stacey prescribed pain relief, anti inflammatory, ointment and subcutaneous fluids so Diva's wing could heal. Diva has been placed in care with the licensed carer who rescued her and is expected to make a full recovery over the coming weeks.
It is important to remember that bats should only be handled by vaccinated bat rescuers as some bat species can carry disease, which can infect humans.
Micro bats are nocturnal mammals sleeping through the day in tree hollows, under loose bark and sometimes buildings. These roost sites are also used to rear young and sleep when inactive over the colder months, sometimes housing up to twenty-five bats in a single colony.
Gould's Long-eared bats typically fly close to the ground when hunting to catch airborne insects or insects on the ground or on vegetation, then eating the insect while continuing to fly. All micro bats are natural pest controllers, consuming half their body weight per night in insects. Without the many micro bat species in the environment we would be plagued by insects.
Call the Australian Wildlife Hospital on 1300 369 652 for all wildlife emergencies.