Update: The L.A. County Department of Public Health’s Veterinary Public Health division reported Monday that nine rabid bats had been found in the Santa Clarita Valley so far this year. A spokeswoman said Tuesday the agency is revising the number to 12.
Another rabid bat has turned up in the Santa Clarita Valley, this time in a bathroom at College of the Canyons’ football stadium in Valencia.
COC Public Information Director Bruce Battle made the announcement by e-mail Monday afternoon.
“Prior to the Hart football game on Friday, Sept. 2, a live bat was found on the floor of the women’s restroom in the stadium,” the e-mail said. “No one was scratched or bitten by the bat, and COC facilities staff recovered it, bagged it and called Animal Control. Animal Control officers took the bat and tested it for rabies, and late last week the department confirmed that it was, in fact, rabid.”
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health announced this week that a twelfth rabid bat has been found in the SCV, which has the highest concentration of rabies-infected animals in the county.
As of Monday, 27 rabid animals – all bats – had been identified so far this year throughout Los Angeles County, up from last week’s 23.
Eight to 10 are typical for the entire county in a normal year.
It is unclear whether the bat found at COC is the same new bat reported in the Health Department’s totals for the week. However, since last week, the agency reports that a rabid bat was found on the floor of a bathroom at a school in Valencia.
The bat “latched onto (a) student’s sandal, but reportedly did not bite the student,” a Health Department website said.
According to the Health Department, bats seen flying during the day, or found on the ground, are more likely than others to have rabies. Never touch a bat or other wild animal, the agency advises, and if you pick up a bat with bare hands, you might get bitten and not know it because the bite marks can be small.
The rabies virus is typically transmitted through bites, and bats are by far the most common carriers. Persons bitten should be tested for rabies, which can be lethal.