On the 22nd of February 2016 a tiny baby bat was brought to the veterinary clinic in Tsumeb. He was found in Otavi, a nearby town about 60 km away from Tsumeb. The people who found him drove all the way to Tsumeb to bring him to the clinic.
The challenge was to feed him as he was very small. We tried feeding him with a 1 ml syringe but it was too big. We then changed to a dropper from one of our veterinary test kits and it worked. We named him Batman and he got stronger as he drank drop for drop of milk. We could see the milk in his stomach and knew when he had enough.
Batman travelled in a shoebox for about two months from the farm to the practice every day. He became quite a celebrity when many people in the practice came to see him. Batman became quite tame. Because we have access to the animals on a daily basis we try and establish if there is an animal human bond. Even with this tiny bat there was a bond with Batman.
At the beginning of May we opened the box one day to feed him and Batman flew away. Even though he was only in our lives for a very short period of time, he enriched our lives by teaching us how to feed a baby bat, and to know that there can be human – animal interaction even with a bat.