A warning has been issued following a surge in people suffering from rabies.
People are being bitten and scratched by flying foxes and infected with a virus like rabies, shares Daily Mail.
A spike in the number of incidents in the Newcastle area has led New South Wales health experts to issue a bat attack alert.
The extremely hot weather seen across Australia this is week is making the bats irritated and aggressive, the ABC reported.
Authorities say the number of bites and scratches is unprecedented, with public health physician David Durrheim telling ABC News: ‘The seven that we have had in the last two weeks is certainly higher than we’ve seen in comparative periods.’
Dr Durrheim is advising people in the region to avoid all contact with the animals, and to assume all bats carry the rabies-like virus Australian bat lyssavirus (ABLV).
The public health doctor said the risks that come with being attacked by a bat should not be underestimated.
‘The clinical symptoms are almost just as awful as rabies, and once the disease starts it can’t really be effectively treated, and almost everyone dies,’ Dr Durrheim said.
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