A bat found and handled by two Bellevue East High School high school students turned out to be rabid.
The students found the bat on the inside of a window last Thursday. “They just wanted to get it outside and let it go, basically is what they wanted to do,” said Bellevue East principal Brad Stueve.
He said one of the girls saw the bat sitting along a window in a hallway, picked it up and put it inside a coat. While she was carrying it another girl decided to touch it as well. The girls then showed the bat to a teacher. That's when staff members put the bat in a box and called the Humane Society. “I don't know if they were shocked is the right word, but it was a bigger deal than they thought it would be," said Stueve.
The Nebraska Humane Society took the animal and sent it to Kansas State University for testing and the bat tested positive for rabies.
“There's no indication of bites, but bat bites can be hard to detect,” said the Humane Society’s Mark Langan. “Also, saliva is a rabies carrier from bats so just to play it safe I've talked to both parents and they're taking their daughters in to the doctors today and most likely they will go through a series of shots in regards to the rabies."
That is definitely a tough lesson learned. “It's very important if you find a bat inside your house, inside a school or business or whatever, contain that bat,” said Langan. “Give us a call, we'll come out and take the bat out for you. If there's any indication of exposure or possible exposure we'll test that bat.”
Stueve said in his seven years at the school, this was the second time a bat was found inside the building.