Live Bat Found at Honolulu’s Interisland Terminal

April 4, 2012, 12:39 PM HST · Updated April 4, 4:51 PM
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Bat found at Honolulu Airport 4/4/12. Photo courtesy, Hawaii Department of Agriculture.

By Wendy Osher

(Update: 4:49 p.m. 4/4/12)

Biologists with the US Geological Survey and the Bishop Museum have identified that bat found at Honolulu International Airport on Monday as a Little Brown Bat (scientific name: Myotis lucifigus). Authorities say the little brown bat is native to North America and is one of the most common bats found on the Mainland. They are insectivores and are mainly nocturnal, according to agricultural officials. Authorities advise anyone who sees an unusual animal or insect to contact the state’s toll-free PEST HOTLINE at 643-PEST (7378).

(Posted: 12:39 p.m. 4/4/12)

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A live bat was recovered at Honolulu International Airport after security personnel saw a man playing with the creature near the interisland terminal.

The incident was reported on Monday afternoon by authorities who observed the man tossing the bat in the air outside of the lobby near Baggage Claim B.

Authorities say it is not known where the bat came from or how it got to the airport.

The bat was recovered and turned over to the Transportation Safety Administration, which called inspectors from the Hawai`i Department of Agriculture.

Bat found at Honolulu Airport 4/4/12. Photo courtesy, Hawaii Department of Agriculture.

The bat was brown in color and had a wingspan of about nine inches.  Identification of the species is ongoing, but local authorities do not believe it is a Hawaiian hoary bat.

Agricultural officials say the bat died overnight and a necropsy was conducted yesterday by state veterinarians.

Results from rabies tests show the animal was negative for the virus.  Hawai`i is the only state and one of the few places in the world that remains rabies free.

“Keeping Hawai`i rabies free is one of the highest priorities of the Hawai`i Department of Agriculture,” said Russell S. Kokubun, Chairperson of the Hawai`i Board of Agriculture.

“Incidents like this remind us that it is not just a concern for animal health, but also human health,” said Kokubun.

***Supporting information courtesy Hawai’i Department of Agriculture.

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