Microbats At Long Grass

By Peter Richards from Long Grass Wiildlife Refuge and Bats Qld

microbat boxIn previous years Gabi and I have had microbats come in to care and those that did we had little success with. We became quite somewhat despondent about the prospect of rearing more microbats only for them to die after a couple of weeks. This year however has been different. Since the beginning of December 2011 we took 9 microbats into care and lost two of them. One of the deaths was pretty well unavoidable. A bat that was passed on to us from Australia Zoo as simply requiring a rest before being released turned out to be paralysed and had multiple injuries. The second death was a 3g furless baby that survived for 27 days and then succumbed to what I think was inhalation pneumonia after she was switched from syringe feeding to lapping as she had a habit of putting her whole nose in the milk. I will stick with syringe feeding these young ones from now on.

We have improved our microbat facilities during this season. The inner lining of a 2 man tent made a perfect bat house in the corner of our office. The tent is free-standing, lightweight, roomy and totally bat proof. 
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Don't Shoot Bats - Please tell your state & local leaders

Don't Shoot Bats - Banner

It's not too late to help - visit - to find out how you can help and for more information on bats. 

"Full exclusion netting is the only reliable method" - NSW Govt (Dept of Environment & Climate Change)

Unfortunately LNP has announced plans to shoot bats instead of following progressive ways that actually work.  Let your pollies know that these bad old ways are no longer acceptable.

Sign the petition at:

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Jan's Magpies Help Nom Butcherbird

 Nom - Juvi pied bitcherbird

 Nom is a one year old pied-butcherbird and a much loved friend of readess Jan & Victoria Anderson (remember the gorgeous picture of Pingu magpie with Vic). 

Nom and older brother Om were regular visitors to Jan's home along with their siblings and parents (see picture below).

Bird territorial rules are very complex. When another pied-butcherbird family moved into the area they felt Jan's yard fell within their boundaries and began to chase Om, Nom and family away much to Jan and Vic's dismay.

Around the same time Nom began to show symptoms of conjunctivitis. (Regular readers may remember our pied-butcherbird Butchie getting this terrible condition which often inflicts pied-butcherbirds and which can end in a cruel death for the bird.)  

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Repurposing Abandoned Mines For Bats & Wildlife

2012 sees the continuation of the Year of the Bat.

Abandoned mines although unsuitable for human use can provide much needed habitat for bats and wildlife. In the United States alone there are over 48,000 abandoned mines.  Abandoned mines are like caves and non-destructive mine closures are those where features such as bat gates, cupolas and other preservation tools have been installed to help bats (or other wildlife depending on the location) use the mines for refuge.

Bat Conservation International and the US Bureau of Land Management have combined their efforts to create a guide that helps determine the best closure type for mine openings. On their dedicated site they provide a wealth of information as well a decision matrix tool to help land managers and conservation groups evaluate a closed land mine, or a mine targeted for closure and determine the most suitable mine opening.  There is also a wealth of information on closure types, materials, considerations, and other expert material.

Such re-purposing is great news for bats and other wildlife and hopefully a turning point as more unusable mines are converted to help conservation efforts across the globe.   

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Wildflower Wonders - The World's Top 50 - by Bob Gibbons

wildflower wonders by Bob Gibbons

 I love wildflowers and I know that wild birds love wildflowers too.  Bob Gibbon's Wildflower Wonders - The 50 Best wildflower sites in the World is filled with spectacular photographs like the one above of Wood Cranesbill and Bistort in the Upper Narreyroux Valley in in the Ecrins National Park in France.   

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