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Rabid bat numbers across state highest in decade for August

King County Public Health issued a warning after a rabid bat was discovered in Seattle's Ballard neighborhood. (Photo courtesy: King County Public Health)

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Washington state is seeing an increase in rabid bats, according to the state Department of Health.

According to a news release, 12 bats have been found since Aug. 1 in parks and homes around the state that have tested positive for rabies.

The state Department of Health said the August numbers are the highest seen in a decade. Officials have found 21 bats this year that tested positive for rabies in the state, according to the news release.

The Washington State Public Health Laboratories test between 200 and 300 bats ever year. Normally, about three to 10 percent are found to be rabid, according to the release.

Officials are unclear if the increase is due to a rise in public awareness or other factors.

Most recently in Seattle, rabid bats were found in the Ballard neighborhood and Green Lake.

The state Department of Health advises people to call your local health department if you believe a person or pet has made contact with a bat.

For more information visit the state Department of Health website.

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