Grey-headed flying fox with divine intentions
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Reported in the Sydney Morning Herald on August 9th was a WIRES flying fox rescue at Sydney Town Hall where Julia Gillard and Cardinal George Pell were among the guests of honour when at a dinner to raise funds for a celebration of the canonisation of Mary MacKillop.
The bewildered flying fox came uninvited to the formal dinner and needed to be rescued by WIRES after colliding with a window and a wall.
Perhaps he was seeking divine intervention, because despite the visibility of these animals at dusk around Sydney, the species is considered endangered in NSW and numbers are declining along Australia's east coast.
The bat, christened ''Mr MacKillop'' by its rescuers, is now in care as he was only 75 per cent of its natural body weight.
Food shortages around Sydney mean many bats are facing starvation. WIRES has had 1504 grey-headed flying foxes, or fruit bats, rescued from harm around the state in 2009-10, up from 764 in 2008-09, and an increasing number were showing signs of hunger.