Bat found hiding in boot of brand new car after 800km journey
A bat was found more than 800km from home after hitching a lift to the UK in a new car destined for the showroom.
Car salesmen had a shock when they found the tiny bat hiding in the boot of the red Vauxhall Grandland X which had been manufactured in France before being transported to Hartlepool, County Durham, to hit the showroom floor.
Our animal collection officer Shane Lynn - who used to work at the dealership - was sent back to his former workplace to collect the little stowaway from the bat-mobile on 8 July.
The little pipistrelle bat seems to be a real Joker and has travelled at least 800km from his home in the boot. The cheeky critter was clearly Robin' a lift - although I don't know if he planned to end up in the north-east of England!
The bat was found when the car arrived at the showroom and staff had quite the fright! Luckily, despite his adventure, he didn't seem to be too worse for wear.
Staff managed to safely contain the bat in a cardboard box and keep him safe until Shane arrived. He took the bat, who seemed a little lethargic, to a local vet for a check-up and reported the find to the Bat Conservation Trust.
It was initially believed that the bat had travelled in the car all the way from the factory in France - but it's now suspected that the bat ended up sneaking into the car at one of the transport's stop-offs in the UK.
Animals can end up in the strangest of places
When you work with animals you never quite know what will happen next - and we do get some batty calls to help animals in strange situations, like this little cross-channel furry!
But it's always really rewarding when we can help an animal in need and ensure they're safe and well.
This little one is now with a bat carer and will be released back into the wild once he's strong and healthy enough. Pipistrelle bats are common in the UK so we can release him here and he should join a local colony and do well.
Depending on the situation, it sometimes may be better to leave them alone.