Following a bat rescue, the next challenge is TREATMENT. Our most amazing success story this year involved the rehabilitation of "Deistra", a female Big Brown Bat, named for a factory where she was bashed with a board and thrown out for dead in the snow. "Deistra's" initial treatment was a series of subcutaneous injections of fluids to rehydrate and stabilize her limp and unconscious body. After some revival, we attempted to feed her, but she could not open her mouth; in addition to a concussion, she had a broken jaw, but thankfully no other serious injuries. Four times a day, we fed her vitamin fortified milk replacement formula drop-by-drop, with an eyedropper gently placed between her closed lips. "Deistra" slowly swallowed her life saving "food". Since she could not yet crawl, we hung her by her toes on the rubberized side of her heated cage to rest. Slowly she recovered her ability to move around and to open her mouth slightly so she could ingest some strained baby food, viscera (insides of worms), and blended mealworms. But "Deistra" still showed no interest in life; emotionally her eyes were dull and her head hung lethargically. To hopefully break her depression, Ann took her for a walk outside one warm winter day. "Deistra" responded finally to the sights and sounds of nature by raising her head and sniffing the air! Progress accelerated from there. Eyes brightening, she began crawling all over us, and soon learned to self-feed on whole mealworms. Soon she was enjoying the company of other female bats in a communal roosting tent. Later, when some of her tent mates became mothers, "Deistra" happily became the "aunt", caring for any pups that were left hanging alone for a while by a tired mom. "Deistra" later flew well, and was released with the same mothers and pups in our barn's nursery bat house. We wish this gentle miracle bat a long and happy life.


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