ABC News: A sanctuary for orphaned fruit bats on Sydney’s North Shore (Australia) has been expanded to house more pups and adult bats.
Every spring up to 100 fruit bat orphans are hand-reared by wildlife volunteers, then taken to the Kukundi shelter at Lane Cove National Park.
Their mothers can die from natural predators, flying accidents and entanglement in power lines.
“They will go to backyard fruit. And they will get tangled in backyard fruit netting. And this does terrible things to their wings so they can’t fly,” said Tierre Thorpe from wildlife carer organisation Sydney Wildlife.
“They often get caught on power lines so they get electrocuted,” she said.
The breeding season is in October when it is all hands on decks for volunteers.
The bats “go through a rehabilitation process in our volunteer’s homes and they come here to gain flight fitness,” she said.
“They learn to fly. They are dehumanised. And we have a hatch at the back which is opened at the time. And then we support feed them for a couple of weeks so they can come back to obtain food while they have their freedom.”
An expanded cage for orphans which was opened this week is expected to cater for 100 babies a year – alongside the 500 adults in a separate cage.