I’m Going Batty

Going Batty - Photograph by Laura Lecce
Going Batty – Photograph by Laura Lecce

So this was an absolute treat…. About a week ago, this furry little bum showed up on a window sill at work. Completely perplexed by this round ball of golden colored fur, it took me a few minutes to figure out that what I was actually looking at was a bat! It was so tiny, like the size of a mouse. I watched closely to make sure he was breathing (as I thought originally that he might be dead), and I wondered what circumstances he had endured to be forced to spend his daily nap on our window sill. The poor little bugger looked so cold that I wished I could have given him a warm cuddle. I regularly checked on this little golden fur ball through out the day, hoping I would eventually see him fly off. Unfortunately, sometime as the sun was setting I missed the takeoff moment, but hoped he would have found his friends. This tiny little guy is very different from the bats I’m used to back in Australia. Some of our bats are much larger and are actually named flying foxes (although we have about 75 species of bats of all different sizes!). Flying foxes are large black bats with a mane of golden fur around their necks, they are seen throughout Sydney. The Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney was home to a very large colony of flying foxes (over 20,000 of them at times) which took up residence on few leafless trees, completely destroyed to accommodate their numbers. They were incredibly loud, constantly squabbling as they tried to find sleeping room on those poor trees. They have since moved on, but it was always an amazing sight to see and hear so many bats in one place!

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10 thoughts on “I’m Going Batty

  1. Will you be surprised to hear that I love bats? lol yep, I do and I have had the fortune of holding one. They are cuddly and so amazing. I would love to see the bats in Australia, to be surrounded by thousands might make my day. I’ll have to google about the noise they make when they squabble, I had no idea that they can be noisy. Wonderful post by the way!

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    1. Hi Margaret, I can always count on you! It doesn’t surprise me that you love bats, they have such cute little faces! You have even been lucky enough to cuddle one? So jealous!
      The noise that 20 000 flying foxes makes is pretty deafening, hopefully you can find a good example on the internet.

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      1. I did and I was puzzled by one video where thousands of flying foxes were congregated in a town and the residents complain how they have resorted to staying indoors. All I could think of ‘oh, they are dangerous?!’…..hmm…..then I realized that the influx of bats scare these people! I had to set my “I love bats” mind out of the way. Anyway, it was a fun exploration, thank you once again. 😉

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      2. I think lots of people are afraid of them, even though they are fruit eaters. They do however carry a virus that can be transmitted to people if you get bitten by one. However, that is incredibly unlikely to happen, mostly they are just noisy, and disruptive and their poo smells really bad. You certainly wouldn’t want a bat family in your backyard.

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  2. I like bats, too. I even had bats attend my wedding a few years ago. They came out of the belfry just after the ceremony. Must have been the noise of the flash of the cameras (before digital cameras) that woke them up. You never saw a room empty so fast. Then instead of going out the door that was opened for them, they flew into the fellowship hall int he basement (to check out the food being prepared?)
    It is so nice to read your descriptions with your pictures. You seem to know a lot more about nature than the average person. My mother was like that.

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  3. I’m another dedicated bat fan and I have also had several experiences with your glorious fruit bats in Australia, their amazing congregation in the treetops and also an unforgettable chance to hold one. They are, in my book, by far the most handsome of the diverse bat species.

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    1. I’m so glad you think so Gary, I have other friends who would very much disagree with you! I hope my blog shares the beauty of many creatures which some people might otherwise utterly despise.

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      1. We share this hope. We are but a small part of a very intricate ecosystem, and we are intimately bound with it, to do all that we can to perpetuate its health. And, as the (supposedly) most-intelligent members, it’s mostly up to us.

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  4. Also, I can tell you that I once caught a bat while fly-fishing in Wisconsin–or, rather, the bat caught my fly in mid-cast! It had caught the fly in its wing and, as it swept it toward its mouth, the (barbless) hook caught in the wing membrane (luckily before it reached its mouth). I was able to reel it in gently and release it unharmed. I’ve always remembered the encounter clearly–and what an unusual feeling to be “playing” the catch in the air above me rather than in the water!

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    1. What a story! I think most Australians would very much hesitate to touch a bat, as they can transmit disease to humans (if you are bitten). I doubt anyone would ever expect a bat encounter while fly-fishing, but it makes sense. Glad he didn’t swallow it, that would have been difficult to rescue. Great story!

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