WHAT TO DO
If you have found a sick, injured or orphaned bat
- Do not touch or attempt to rescue the bat yourself.
- Please call your nearest wildlife organisation.
- Keep children and domestic pets away while waiting for the arrival of a trained, vaccinated rescuer.
Any animal that is frightened or in pain may struggle and try to bite if handled incorrectly.
Australian Bat Lyssavirus (ABLV) can only be transmitted by a bite or scratch from an infected bat. While the risk is very low, it is assumed that any bat can potentially carry the virus. All bites or scratches must be reported to Queensland Health and may result in the bat you are trying to help being euthanased for testing. An effective post-exposure treatment is available, however no unvaccinated person should ever attempt to rescue a sick or injured bat.
Found a bat on the ground
If a bat is found on the ground, carefully placing a weighted down cardboard box or laundry basket over it will keep the bat secure awaiting the arrival of a rescuer. This will prevent the bat crawling to a nearby tree out of reach of the rescuer.
Found a bat hanging by itself
A flying-fox hanging anywhere by itself during the day is not normal behaviour. Please report it to your nearest wildlife organisation for assessment.
Found a bat tangled in Fruit Tree Netting
Please do not attempt to remove the bat yourself. Contact your local wildlife rescue organisation and keep children and domestic pets away.
Found a bat caught on Barbed Wire
Please do not attempt to remove the bat yourself. If possible, a light towel or old t-shirt thrown (from a safe distance) over the bat on the fence will provide some shelter from the elements or other animals and help to calm the animal while waiting for a trained, vaccinated rescuer to arrive. On hot days, a damp (not wet) towel will help to cool the bat down.
Bat hanging on overhead powerlines
Do not attempt to retrieve any bat from powerlines yourself. Please contact your nearest wildlife organisation immediately. Even if the bat is dead, it may be a mother with a live baby hidden under her wing. Reporting dead bodies is also useful information to identify regular trouble-spots for rectification works.
24 Hour Hotlines
If you find an injured bat, or one that is on the ground or hanging alone by itself during the day, DO NOT TOUCH IT, and keep children and domestic pets away. A very small percentage of bats can carry a rabies-related virus which can only be transmitted to humans through a bite or deep scratch.
Any wild animal that is injured or frightened can be defensive, so it is essential that you immediately seek the help of a specialised wildlife service which has trained and vaccinated rescuers available.
Bat Rescue Inc. 24hr Hotline
(via WILVOS) 07 5441 6200
1300 264 625
0488 228 134
07 3062 6730
Gold Coast Region:
Gold Coast (Bats QLD)
0447 222 889