At first, he did not look like a vision of Beauty but that was because he had been through so much.
Benger was found in July 2017 as an orphan. He was almost two miles from the nearest nursery colony. He was about four weeks old and too large to have been carried by another bat in flight, so we have no idea how he got to the porch of the lady who called us. In order to get where he was found he traveled through feral cats, raccoons and skunks, fire ants, traffic, and burning hot pavement. He finally ended up on a porch where he was spotted, and we were called right away.
For the first few days, we honestly didn’t think Benger would survive. He was critically dehydrated, so much so that it took 5mls of fluids –more than the amount of blood contained in his tiny body- to get him up to speed.
He was also skin and bones and vomited at almost every meal, losing all the formula and precious calories his body so desperately needed. Then burns started appearing on his toes and tail membrane, likely from the scalding hot pavement he traveled across. He lost his tail to burns and eventually lost one of his thumbs and a few of his toes.
It took Benger two months to completely heal. Throughout it all, he was such a hero. Despite the pain he endured, he never lost the will to survive. He isn’t releasable because of his injuries so we will take care of him for the rest of his life (15 to 20 years).
His name is a combination of Roger (don’t ask) and Benjamin Button, because he looked like a shriveled old man when he arrived. We tacked on “Avenger” because to us he is nothing short of a tiny superhero.
To celebrate his survival, Bat World volunteer Moriah Champagne made Benger a tiny cape. His cape hangs on display beside the staff lockers at Bat World Sanctuary.