Rabid bats discovered in San Diego

March 6, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
Health officials announced Friday that two rabid bats recently found in San Diego County are the first of the flying mammals discovered locally with the disease this year.The bats were discovered in Claremont and Santee, according to San Diego County Veterinarian Dr. Nikos Gurfield.

No humans were exposed to the rabid bats, county health officials said.

"Rabies is most often transmitted by the bite or scratch of an infected animal," said Dr. Gurfield.

"Bat bites are extremely small and may not be recognized by the person who is bitten. You should never handle or try to capture a bat."

Rabies is a virus carried in the saliva of infected animals. It affects the nervous system of humans and other animals.