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Summer is active season for bats, and Maine CDC urges precautions to prevent rabies exposure

Hydropower Transmission Corridor
Tony Dejak
AP file
In this Feb. 8, 2017 file photo, a northern long-eared bat is held at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, in Cleveland.

Bats in Maine are most active in late July through early September, and the state CDC is urging people to take steps to limit their exposure to rabies.

The virus is found in many Maine animals, but it can be difficult to tell whether a bat has exposed a person. The state CDC defines exposures as scratches and bites, as well as simply waking up to a bat in a bedroom or finding a child or incapacitated adult in a room with a bat.

Those who have potentially been exposed should alert their health care provider. If left untreated, rabies is often fatal.

Last year, 16 bats in Maine tested positive for rabies — the highest number in a decade.