ith bats being pointed to as the possible source of the deadly Wuhan virus, a young travel show host has publicly apologized for a video in which she dined on one of the flying mammals.
The video is one of a number of clips that have been circulating around WeChat and Weibo recently showing people eating bats — typically the whole thing dunked in a soup.
In this particular clip, the smiling woman holds up the bat and shows it off before breaking the animal open and chowing down with a friend.
“The bat tastes very fresh, like chicken,” she says.
The woman in the video is Wang Menyun, the host of an online travel show. She says that the clip came from her 2016 trip to the Pacific archipelago nation of Palau where she tried out some of the local specialties.
Wang claims that at the time she had no clue that bats were the carriers of diseases, explaining that she was only trying to convey to her viewers the life and cuisine of the local people.
Of course, generally one of the top things that most people know about bats is that they carry disease. Both SARS and Ebola are believed to have come from bats.
While bats have not yet been confirmed as the source for the Wuhan virus, they are the prime suspect with Chinese scientists finding that the virus’ genome is 96 percent identical to a coronavirus found in bats.
Bats were on sale at the Wuhan wet market where the outbreak first began, along with a variety of other wild animals. Markets where multiple species of wildlife are kept together in the same space present fertile ground for dangerous viruses to jump from one species to another, mutating along the way and eventually finding a human host.
On Sunday, China announced a temporary ban on wildlife trade.