What if flying-foxes live nearby?

From a public health perspective there is in almost all circumstances no reason for a community to be alarmed if a colony moves in nearby.

In 1996, Australian bat lyssavirus (ABL) was identified in flying-foxes. However ABL is not a reason to fear flying-foxes as it is very rare and preventable. ABL can only be transmitted to humans when infected flying-fox saliva comes into contact with human tissue through an open wound or with mucus membrane, e.g. eyes, nose and mouth. Therefore it is very important that flying-foxes are not handled by members of the public.

Humans are not exposed to ABL if flying-foxes fly overhead or feed or roost in gardens. Nor is it spread through droppings or urine, or if you live, play or walk near their colonies.

While there is understandably community concern about the current Hendra virus outbreak, it is important to remember that such outbreaks are rare and occur in exceptional circumstances only.

There is also no evidence that humans can catch the virus directly from flying-foxes.

There is a proper process in place where DERM can work with members of the public, local authorities and other organisations to manage flying-foxes where difficulties arise.
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BATS. Megabats, Flying-foxes, Fruit bats and Microbats: What if flying-foxes live nearby?
What if flying-foxes live nearby?
BATS. Megabats, Flying-foxes, Fruit bats and Microbats
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