OAKLAND -- Alameda county health officials are warning the public after an Oakland Zoo volunteer was bitten by a rabid wild bat.
The volunteer, who was described in media reports as a teenage girl, was taking the Mexican free-tailed bat to zookeepers for care on Saturday when it bit her, zoo and county health officials said. The bat, which was not part of a zoo exhibit, later tested for positive for rabies.
Rabies can be fatal, but the girl is undergoing treatment and is expected to make a full recovery, according to Alameda County Health Department officials.
This was the third case of an animal testing positive for rabies in 2013, officials said. All three were bats. The two previous cases involving rabid bats in Pleasanton and San Lorenzo, resulted in a pet cat and a pet dog being quarantined. There have been 53 rabid bats found in the state this year as of June 19.
Officials are reminding residents not to touch or approach wild animals and to instead call Oakland Animal Control at 510-535-5602 or Vector Control at 510-567-6800.
David DeBolt covers breaking news. Contact him in Richmond at 510-262-2728. Follow him at Twitter.com/daviddebolt.