Wheat

Going in to bat for bats

Wednesday 6 February, 2013
Two free events organised by the Broken Boosey Conservation Management Network (CMN) will be held in March to celebrate Australasian Bat Night, an initiative of the Australasian Bat Association.

Two free events organised by the Broken Boosey Conservation Management Network (CMN) will be held in March to celebrate Australasian Bat Night, an initiative of the Australasian Bat Association.

Broken Boosey CMN co-ordinator Janice Mentiplay-Smith said network members would host activities this year at Numurkah and Wunghnu to support the initiative.

"Bats are important links in the ecosystem, and it is well known through the farming community how effective bats are for insects and pest control," Ms Mentiplay-Smith said.

The first event will be a "Bat Night" at Numurkah on Saturday, March 9. The session will be held at the Train Park (Rotary Park), Melville St, Numurkah and starts at 6.30pm.

"We will have two terrific guest speakers - Friends of the Organ Pipes National Park bat box project manager Robert Bender and Tanja Straka, a PhD Student from the Australian Research Centre for Urban Ecology," Ms Mentiplay-Smith said.

"They will talk about the role of bats, their ecology and how we can learn more about flying foxes and micro-bats in the urban environment. Tanja will bring along some anabats, which are devices that will help identify and locate bats by detecting their echolocation calls."

People are encouraged to bring along a chair and refreshments on the evening.

Mr Bender and Ms Straka will also be guest speakers at the "Boxes for Bats" event to be held at the Wunghnu Recreation Reserve, Carlisle St, Wunghnu on Sunday March 10, from 10.30am (for an 11am start).

"Robert will talk about the role of bats, their life and how providing roosting boxes can help," Ms Mentiplay-Smith said. "Robert's experience with bat box projects will provide an invaluable insight into these fascinating creatures. Tanya will talk about microbats in urban situations, and how we can help maintain populations."

Boxes for Bats participants will also have the opportunity to build a bat box, for no cost, from supplied pre-fabricated materials to take home.

A catered lunch will be provided for the March 10 event at no cost; please RSVP with any dietary requirements.

For more information or to RSVP for either event, please contact Janice Mentiplay-Smith on 57611644 or janicem@gbcma.vic.gov.au

For more information about other Australasian Bat Night activities visit www.ausbats.org.au

A lesser long-eared bat