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A student in an Oceanside elementary school brought a dead bat to class Wednesday.

Turns out the bat – which was brought in a bag – has rabies. (Or contracted it before its untimely demise.)

The county’s Department of Health and Human Services is handling the incident, and says no other children are known to have handled the bat. The child’s parents were advised to call their family doctor.

Dr. Wilma Wooten, the county’s deputy public health officer, delivered this warning: “With Halloween approaching, it is important that parents tell children to stay away from bats. They may look like Halloween decorations, but this incident illustrates why no one should handle bats, even when they are dead.”

Weird timing. The Washington Post ran a fun story on Mexican bats’ benefits the other day. It’s worth a look.

ROB DAVIS

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