"HOLY BATMAN! A crew of carpenters are in for a surprise when they
begin the tear off process of a clients' old roof and hundreds of bats
come flying out from underneath the tiles!"
Bats are actually good for the neighborhood and environment. As you view the
video, you'll noticed there wasn't any damage caused by the bats, they
simply colonized due to the openings of the tiles. Overall, they are useful
as a warning sign to potential environmental problems, they help control the
insect population, mainly the mesquito population but also other insects
which can be dangerous to humans.
Bats are our friends. : )
A lot of people go through the shots simply because the offending bat could
not be captured and dissected:
"Rabies is a fatal disease. Each year, tens of thousands of people are
successfully protected from developing rabies through vaccination after
being bitten by an animal like a bat that may have rabies."
The actual number of fatalities is quite low, and usually means a bite
victim did not seek medical treatment, but bats are still the number one
vector of the disease. Bats found inside the home, acting erratically
should be captured - children are often bitten in their sleep without waking
up. It may save them from the once *very* nasty "rabies series" of shots.
<<The current series of shots is very effective if given soon after the
exposure, and is fewer in number with far less side effects than the
anti-rabies regimen given prior to 1980. However, the current series is not
without some discomfort and risk, and averages several thousand dollars per
series per patient. The shots are not effective once symptoms develop.
Persons who have never been vaccinated against rabies receive two different
products: human rabies immunoglobulin (HRIG) and human rabies vaccine. The
dose of HRIG depends upon the weight of the person, and is generally
infiltrated by needle and syringe at the site of the bite. These persons
also receive four intramuscular doses of vaccine over the next 14 days5.
Persons with altered immunocompetence (and not previously vaccinated) should
receive a five-dose vaccination regimen with one dose of RIG. Persons who
are exposed to a rabid animal but have been previously vaccinated require
only two booster doses of vaccine three days apart.>>
All in all, I take the position: "I don't live in your trees or burrows -
don't move into my house and we'll be (mostly) fine." My dog enforces that
position with great determination. She's too proud to roll over for me, but
she'll squirm upside all night in the juice of a cricket she just killed.
Then she'll patrol the spot where she found him with extra vigilence for a
week or so afterward.
Bats *are* our friends, especially if they do their "bat thing" away from
human habitation. I'd even support artifically "bat caves" mounted on
telephone pole or some other bat-attractive structure.
It's pigeons that are our TRUE enemy! I recently learned that in many
cities, pigeon-netting is being applied to bridge ironwork because bridge
engineers have realized that pigeon poop turns into a pretty potent
corrosive agent over time. I also learned that the Tappan Zee bridge was
built on the cheap with wood pilings that are in danger of being infested
Never said otherwise. Just pointing out that in addition to histoplasmOsis,
bats transmit more rabies than any other animal in America and that finding
them in your house can indicate that they're rabid. Probably not in this
case, but indoor bats are not to be taken lightly. They usually stay away
from humans and those that do approach humans are usually injured or sick
and can have rabies.
As for "Caver's Lung" - it's not something to dismiss lightly:
<<histoplasmosis may become widespread (disseminated), and involve the
blood, meninges (outer covering of the brain), adrenal glands, and other
<< Bob Dylan was hospitalized due to histoplasmosis in 1997, causing the
cancellation of concerts in the United Kingdom and Switzerland>>
Both histoplasmosis and rabid bats are far more rare than the hype
around them. I never said histoplasmosis was anything to sneeze at, just
quite rare. And yes, cavers do pay attention for any signs of
histoplasmosis, but they don't take any special precautions (masks,
hazmat suits, etc.) since the risk is low and as long as you are alert
and catch any case of it promptly it generally isn't a big deal.
I'm pretty sure it was a Dirty Jobs episode, and I'm pretty sure they
used the gear because histoplasmosis bacteria were known to be present
at that site.
Spelunkers are not cavers... Cavers are the trained and prepared folks
who typically rescue the lost, untrained and unprepared spelunkers.
Cavers have maps of the caves (they surveyed and produced them), have
appropriate gear for caves with vertical drops, etc.
Wellllll..... I think they are pretty cool little critters too. On
occasion we have flocks of them appear in the evening down here is SE
Kansas. Love to watch them swoop and do their evening rituals which
is probably hunting insects.
But we have enough.
What!? You've never seen a Mexican Bat Dance before? It would be good to
put up a bat house much like a bird house but a bit different to keep
the bats around for insect control. ^_^
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