Patient of the Week

All proceeds from Steve Irwin Day go into projects such as the Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors Australian Wildlife Hospital.

The Australian Wildlife Hospital treats thousands of injured animals each year. Sadly, many of them don’t make it back to the wild. The lucky ones make a full recovery and go on to live happy and healthy lives in their natural habitat. These are their stories…

Kel the Eastern Tube Nosed Bat

Kel the Eastern Tube Nosed Bat

Age: Adult

Sex: Female Weight: 43gms

Found: In the Mackay region. Initial treatment took place at a vet clinic in the area.

Transported to: The Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital which was a meeting point for Kel so she could continue onto a carer qualified in Eutherian care.

Veterinary Assessment: Kel was alert and hanging well in her transport cage on arrival. Under anaesthesia Dr Amber discovered a large part of the wing membrane was missing on her right wing and torn almost all the way through. An injury like this would prevent Kel from being able to fly and therefore making it impossible for her to survive in the wild. Kels cause of affliction was unknown but it is not uncommon for bats to sustain injuries from barbed wire fences and predators such as birds of prey and domestic cats.

Treatment: Kel had already been given antibiotics and had her wound dressed at the previous vet clinic in Mackay. So Dr Amber administered some more fluids for hydration and painkillers for her discomfort. Amazingly bat wings can heal well in the right environment and after Kel was checked over she was transferred to her carer to assist with the healing process.

Future: Kel will remain with her carer for a number of months before her wing is completely healed. She will require a lot of rest and nutrient-rich food to build up her strength. It will be important that Kel has the opportunity to fly at some point in care so she can stretch the wing out and prevent scar tissue build up. Following her recovery she will be transported back to Mackay for release.

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