About Bats

Is There a Link Between Coronavirus Covid-19 and Bats? - An Insight

The global pandemic “Coronavirus” COVID-19 is caused by the virus named severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) by the WHO (World Health Organization). By now, we are all very much familiar with the Coronavirus outbreak and its severity. According to reports, the first case of coronavirus was recorded somewhere in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. It’s been a while since Wuhan was the epicenter of the fatal pandemic. It has now become widespread in other parts of the world leading to many more cases of Covid-19 infected people. The death toll is on the rise and the situation is getting worse by the day. 

The only savior seems to be staying at home in self-isolation, social distancing, and cutting all physical contact with the outside world. While virologists, experts, and scientists are doing their level best in finding a cure for this disease, it is necessary to understand the virus that causes the Covid-19 disease to spread.

There are many speculations about the occurrence of coronavirus disease since 2019. In this article, we will try to explore the much-discussed links with animals such as bats.

What is Coronavirus?

Coronavirus is a disease caused by the virus SARS COV 2. It attacks directly the lungs and causes severe trouble in breathing with patients gasping for breath and in worse conditions, death. 

Its infection and recovery are largely dependent on the immune system of an individual. This virus falls in the category of SARS as they are genetically connected and hence the name. This is not an airborne virus. It is transmitted by an infected person. When the person coughs or sneezes, the droplets remain on surfaces or hands for a long time ranging from 3-4 hours to many days span.

Thus any person coming in close contact with such a person can be at risk of catching the virus. 

Animals and Covid-19 Coronavirus

The Coronavirus has been a subject of a scare as there are many grey areas when it comes to its origin. Through the past months, we have seen many cases of animals being abandoned, some killed due to the fear of them being the cause of transmission and carriers.

But, Is it really true? 

Originally scientists thought that bats are the source of this virus and also they are the only mammals that fly which partially asserted the study. But, later it was thought that Pangolins must be the origin. However, the thoughts are pretty unclear even now.

It all started when 41 people were hospitalized in Dec 2019 in the Hubei province in China and 27 of them had visited the “wet market” in the heart of this city. This led to the raising of questions between animals and the Coronavirus link.

But molecular dating suggests that this virus had infected people somewhere in Nov’19 and only showed symptoms days later. 

People in China consume bat and bat soup on a large level and this is one of the selling products in the wet markets. The viruses that are extremely similar to the one that causes Covid-19 have been observed in the Chinese horseshoe bats. All of this added fuel to the fire of bats being the origin. However, there is no such scientific evidence to date. The genetic study, however, holds a tight radar on the possibilities.

How to Stay Safe from Coronavirus Connecting Animals? 

Centers for disease control and prevention along with a large number of public health officials, health departments are working day in and out, putting their lives at risk. 

The following some of the quoted facts from WHO that include: “A virus that is regularly transmitted from an animal to a human is called a zoonotic virus”. It also suggests that “SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19, belongs to a group of genetically-related viruses that includes SARS-CoV and a number of other CoVs isolated from bat populations”. But, in the end, the air is cleared as “Currently, the zoonotic source of SARS-CoV-2 is unknown”.

The testing for Covid-19 is also being carried out efficiently worldwide. But, with the number of people infected and dying is rising even in a powerful country like the United States.  Especially if you live in Florida, that is house to many species of bats, the scare of the Coronavirus disease is at large. But, there is no need to panic. There is no proof that bats are responsible for the spread of Covid-19.

However, there is no need to let bats house or make your homes their roosting sites. Barring the possibility of bats being an intermediate host for the Coronavirus disease of 2019, it is still not suitable for other health reasons for bats to be living in your houses.

Therefore, it is the best practice to seek professional help and carry out bat removal before the onset of the bat maternity season.