The coronavirus scare has gripped all of us. With the increasing number of cases, it is natural to be afraid of contracting the virus, which is why it is suggested to stay indoors, as far as possible. But will the growing hatred towards bats and pangolins contain the spread? Scientists are still conducting experimenting to understand the root cause of the virus. They are scrambling to figure out how the virus was transmitted to humans. Fake news and rumours about 'bat soup causing coronavirus' is among reasons why people hate the bird. Let us not hate the bats and pangolins durig this pandemic. In this article, find a detailed explanation as to why we should not be blaming, bats, pangolins or any other animals for the virus transmission and instead understand their roles in the environment.

Bat population around the world are declining, as a consequence of human activities. People are constantly exposed to misinformation peddled on various for a claiming that bats are dangerous, blood-sucking creatures and carry a host of diseases including the COVID-19 virus. According to the latest report, people in Karnataka have started to cut down the trees, where colonies of bats tend to roost. The COVID-19 spread even shined the spotlight on the shy pangolins.

Are Bats and Pangolins Responsible for Coronavirus?

Bats, pangolins, like any other animals, are a reservoir to a host of potentially disease-causing pathogens. These viruses would have evolved specificity, but do not have the ability to affect other hosts directly. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that the source of the current coronavirus outbreak is not yet known. Again, the South Asian scientists and conservationists strongly suggest that it is unlikely for SARS-like viruses to jump directly from bats to humans. Even the report from the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on the discovery of bat coronavirus in two species of South Asian bats poses no known health hazard. Here’s the report, tweeted by IFS Officer Parveen Kaswan, urging humans to not blame any animals for the virus.

Check Tweet:

Why We Should Not Hate Bats and Pangolins?

Bats have always had a bad reputation. Bats are essential members of many types of ecosystems, ranging from rain forests to deserts. Some plants depend partly or wholly on bats to pollinate their flowers or even spread their seeds. Just like bees, bats travel from flower to flower drinking nectar, they transfer pollen from one flower to another, in the process, which causes these plants to produce fruit. They are the only mammals that can fly. Bats also help control pests by eating the insects. There are a lot of reasons which explain how humans are directly and indirectly depended on bats. And for pangolins, these shy creatures are famous for providing pest control and even improve soil quality.
The ongoing pandemic has increased concerns among scientists and environmentalists to protect the bats and pangolins because of the misinformation being spread that is risking their lives. We need to protect their habitats to preserve the environment. If you know any place where bats are roosting, do not disturb them.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 25, 2020 04:12 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website