Imagine what hundreds of thousands of flying fruit bats sounds like.
If you visited the North Queensland town of Ingham, you wouldn’t have to imagine it. That’s where officials say hundreds of thousands of fruit bats are living and causing a lot of problems.
For instance, they land on tree branches and the branches break.
There are so many of the flying foxes (yep, that’s their name) that emergency helicopters at a nearby hospital have to land someplace else.
Children are afraid to go to school because the bats are hanging out in the trees on the school grounds, there, because the bats have outbred their habitat.
This story isn’t necessarily a plug for environmental legislation in Ingham. The animals are protected by law, two of the subspecies are listed as “vulnerable” in Australia.
And this fact supersedes the possibility that the fruit bats may carry viruses that can be deadly to humans including rabies.
Along with being a protected species, wildlife experts in North Queensland say the bats are necessary for pollination.
And they say that the bat colonies will shrink by April.
In two months.
Two, long, months.
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