Tuesday , June 28 2022

The Cairns heat field causes spike in bats' bites


CAIRNS and the Hinterland Hospital and the Health Service advised people to pay attention to local bats as the heat sends them out of the trees and in the range of bites.

According to CHHH, there have been people treated today only for bites and scratches.

Dr Richard Gair, director of the Tropical Public Health Service, said some bats might be infected with potentially fatal Australian Bats lyssavirus (ABLV).

ABLV is an infection similar to rabies, which can be transmitted by a bite or scratch, or

possibly by exposing your eyes, nose or mouth to saliva, "he said.

media_cameraVolleyball flying in figs from the library PHOTOGRAPHY: ANNA ROGERS

"There have been six complaints about people who have been battered or scratched by bats last week, including four today, which is unusually high and despite the public health warning issued last week.

There have been reports of bats falling from trees as a result of warm weather.

Dr. Gair said that anyone who sees a wounded or fallen bat must avoid manipulation and instead report it to a vaccinated or caretaker savior.

"All scratches and bats of bats require treatment, including vaccination, to protect themselves against

developing ABLV, "he said.

"Prompt treatment after a bite or scratch from a bat can prevent serious illness and death."

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