Rescuers Find Sick Baby Bat The Size Of A Ping-Pong Ball
Her name is Merri — and they realized something amazing about her ❤
When a tiny baby bat was found alone on the ground, it seemed like it was already too late. Rescuers were worried the little bat wasn’t going to make it, but she was rushed to the RSPCA anyway, where staffers immediately began dedicating hours to her care.
The little bat, now named Merri, was underweight when she arrived at the RSPCA, and suffered from a really nasty foot injury. She was so young that in the wild, she still would have been dependent on her mother, meaning she definitely wouldn’t have survived if rescuers hadn’t stepped in.
“When she came in she was really close to death; it’s amazing that she’s still alive,” India Long, staff member and bat expert at the RSPCA’s West Hatch Wildlife Center, said in a press release. “She’s about the size of a ping-pong ball and weighs only 5 grams, which is about 2 grams less than she should.”
Long has been caring for Merri around the clock, giving her fluids every two hours, before graduating to feeding her three times a day as she began to get stronger. Everyone is astounded that the little bat has survived — but her survival isn’t the only thing that’s incredible about Merri’s rescue.
After examining her, staffers determined that Merri is most likely a grey long-eared bat, which is an incredibly rare animal — especially in England.
“It’s so difficult to tell grey long-eared bats apart from brown long-eared bats, which are much more common, but I’ve spoken to a number of different bat experts, all of whom believe she looks like a grey bat,” Long said. “We’ve sent a fecal sample off for DNA testing so we can be sure and can then ensure further rehabilitation is appropriate for her. They’re one of the rarest bats in England and among the rarest mammals.”
Very little is known about grey long-eared bats, and there are thought to be only around 1,000 of them in all of England, according to Long. Long is very excited to have one in her care, and is even more excited about the prospect of eventually releasing her back into the wild.
“She’s doing a little better now but isn’t out of the woods yet,” Long said. “I really hope we are able to get her back to full health so we can release her back into the wild, where she belongs.”