MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Zoo Miami treated and released one of the rarest endangered mammals in the world.  Only a few hundred are believed to exist.

The Florida bonneted bat is Florida’s largest and is spread out over six south Florida counties.

Zoo Miami officials said the bat was discovered the injured bat February 10th by a family in Little Havana.

It was crawling on the ground outside their house and the family reported it out of fear a cat would hurt it.

The bat was turned over to the South Florida Wildlife Center and identified as a Florida bonneted bat.

The US Fish and Wildlife Service was contacted and had the bat transferred to undergo assessment and care by a veterinarian in Zoo Miami’s Conservation and Research Department.

To see a video of the bat taken by Dustin Smith, click here.

The zoo has a large outdoor quarantine flight cage specifically designed for bats that made it an ideal place for this special bat’s recovery.

On March 1st, representatives from Zoo Miami, the USFWS, and the family that turned in the bat, witnessed the bat, affectionately named “Clyde”, being released back into the heart of Miami where other Florida bonneted bats had been detected.

Wildlife officials ask anyone who discovers an injured bat to contact them.

They also encourage bat houses to be placed in communities.

More information on backyard bat houses can be found at the Florida Bat Conservancy’s page.


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