The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department is seeking the public’s help in locating a person believed to be exposed to a rabid bat earlier this week in Santa Barbara. The person is described as a tall, slender, Caucasian female between the ages of 45 and 70 years old with short gray hair.

At 10 a.m. on Tuesday, April 23, 2019 two male individuals were approached by the woman at the corner of Sola Street and Anacapa Street in Santa Barbara near Alameda Park. She handed them a box containing a bat that had been captured and asked them to take the bat to Animal Services, which the two men did. The bat was sent for testing by County Animal Services and tested positive for the rabies virus.

If you are the person who captured the bat or have information regarding this incident, you are urged to call the Public Health Department at 805-681-5280 during or after business hours.

There is no threat to the public as this is an isolated incident. The Public Health Department advises the public to be aware of wild animals. Do not approach, handle, or feed wild and unfamiliar animals, even if they appear tame. Any bite from a wild or unknown animal should be considered as a possible source of rabies. Rabies is a very serious disease and is almost always fatal in humans if not treated before symptoms appear.