A warning on high season for bats

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A warning on high season for bats

Postby Wayne Harrison » Jul 27, 2006 8:10 am

By Connie Paige, BostonGlobe Correspondent
July 27, 2006

It's bat season -- and we're not just talking about the ones you find at Fenway.

The Newton Department of Health and Human Services is warning that the last two weeks of July and the first two weeks of August represent the most dangerous time for a possible encounter between bats and people.

Now is when juvenile bats, which have been confined to the colony while growing large enough to fly on their own, test their wings, according to David Naparstek , the city's health commissioner.

Naparstek warned that if a bat is found in a room with a vulnerable person -- such as a child, senior citizen or someone with an infirmity -- or a pet, immediate action should be taken.

``If any of these conditions exist, that is a presumed exposure," he said, and the bat should be captured for testing even if there does not appear to be any contact, such as a bite or scratch.

``A bat bite is very unapparent," Naparstek said. ``If a bat bites you, you may not even know it."

A small percentage of bats carry rabies, which, if transmitted to humans, can be fatal if not treated, Naparstek said.

The bat should be confined to a room and captured, or the local animal control officer should be called to catch it.

<a href="http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2006/07/27/a_warning_on_high_season_for_bats/">Full Story</a>
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Wayne Harrison
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