March 11, 2018
Burnham-On-Sea wildlife carers' surprise as baby bat is born at centre

Staff at Secret World Wildlife Rescue near Burnham-On-Sea were surprised this week when one of the bats in care gave birth.

The pipistrelle bat has been in the care of Secret World since December and was brought in, having been disturbed from hibernation and found to be severely underweight – too underweight to be released immediately.

While the bat was recovering, staff were surprised by how many mealworms she was eating – double the amount for a bat of her size and sex.

It is thought that the bat was pregnant when she came to Secret World last year is now being kept in a warm vivarium triggered the fertilisation.

Secret World animal carer Sarah Tingvoll, pictured below, who is caring for the young bat, told "We kept her on her own away from the other male bats we had in. She was scoffing all her food, eating double the amount the other bats were, but last Sunday it made sense why. We spotted a baby had appeared!"

"Mother and baby will stay at Secret World until April and we will take them to a flight pen before releasing them. The baby needs to learn to fly and self-feed from live food and the mum will need to build strength back up, so a period in a purpose-built flight pen will enable them to do this. Then a suitable release site will be found."

The bat is keeping its baby tucked away under its wing, hidden from view. In 2017 Secret World rescued 119 bats, including a rare grey long-eared bat.

Members of the public who would like advice on how to look after wild animals or would like to report injured wildlife should call 01278 783 250.


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