Two workers for a renovation company stoned a little brown bat clinging to two stories up on the wall of a posh midtown office building on Sunday night or Monday morning. When Jack Lieb found the limp bat with a mangled wing, he put it in a planter and made sure the contractors, there to fix doors, were removed from the project at 12 East 49th Street.
“Grown men were crying when they say what these guys did,” Jack says. “The bat was 25-30 feet up on a wall. They tried to say they were afraid the bat was going to hurt them. But that’s something that little boys would do.”
Next he tried to get help for the bat. Bats are a tricky species to take care of in New York. They can potentially carry rabies so wildlife rehabilitators need a special rabies vector license, which entails training and vaccines. Only a handful of people in the whole city have them. But, it’s important to save every one because the New York bat populations are getting wiped out by white-nosed syndrome. Many worry all of New York’s nine species of bats could all be extinct in the state in 20 years. Eventually he found the Wild Bird Fund and the vet office where they heroically save tons of New York wildlife: Animal General on Columbus and 87th Street. Unfortunately, the bat couldn’t be saved; it had an open fracture–the bone was sticking out and it would never be able to fly again. They had to euthanize him.
Good on Jack, though, for saving the bat some pain and teaching the contractors not to mess with NYC wildlife.
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