Diseases That Bats Can Possibly Carry

It is a known fact that bats are playing a key role in our planet’s ecosystem. Unfortunately, the bats are also known to carry diseases that can be fatal to us. This is not surprising since bats carry pathogens that can be transmitted to humans. Marburg, Ebola, Hendra, Nipah, and rabies are some of the virus that they can probably carry. Ebola and Marburg are responsible for killing 80-90 percent of infected. In addition, most of the diseases have emerged in the last 50 years.

Different Bat-Diseases that Can Be Transmitted to Human

Humans slowly creep into the territory of the bats which resulted to an increased contact with the bats which also increased the amount of individuals affected with the disease. For example, it was discovered in Malaysia that they have constructed pig farms near the forest that is inhabited by the bats. This has increased the outbreak of Nipah virus.


Bats are potential carrier of rabies that can be transmitted to human. At least 1% of them are known to carry the rabies virus which is why it is fairly impossible to tell whether the bats that are roosting in your house are carrying the virus or not. In case you noticed that the bat is looking sick and weak, make sure to stay away from them. The rabies virus will first target our immune system particularly our nervous system. It is essential that the right treatment will be provided to a person that has been bitten by bat. At least 30,000 individuals are receiving PEP vaccine annually due to a possible contact with an animal with the virus.


There has been evidence that the bats in Africa are potential carrier of the Ebola virus. Some bats located in Central and West Africa has been discovered to possess antibodies to the Ebola. Consuming the meat of the bats can expose you to this disease. The disease can then be spread on human contact. Whether they live on a cave or roost in your property, the bats are living closely together which increases the chance that the pathogens of the virus can be spread. Fortunately, bats have a strong immune system that prevents them from dying to this type of disease. Sadly, humans don’t have the same level of immune system.

In the US the only known zoonotic disease that the bats can carry would be the rabies and Histoplasmosis. You will not be exposed to the risk of rabies if you are not handling a bat. Internationally, the bats have been recognized as a reservoir for a huge type of pathogens and viruses. Most of them are not harmful to the humans, but there are some viruses that can be fatal to humans. These diseases will not just randomly be transmitted to humans. A deliberate or accidental contact with the bat can cause this disease. Based on the study, the human activities such as invading or disturbing their roosting area is the primary cause of the spread of these diseases.

Read the How to get rid of bats page for helpful information and to learn more about Diseases That Bats Can Possibly Carry

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