Burdekin Shire Council will next week begin dispersing a growing roost of flying foxes from trees in Home Hill’s Lloyd Mann Park.
Council’s Governance and Local Laws Manager Dan Mulcahy said the dispersal activities would take place from 5am next Monday, April 4, through to Wednesday, April 6.
“We will have employees using starter’s pistols from 5am until 6.30am,” he said.
“Unfortunately we have to start this early to prevent the bats taking up roost in the trees when they return from feeding around dawn.”
Mr Mulcahy said residents with pets in the vicinity of the dispersal activities would need to ensure their pets were adequately secured to reduce the risk of escape.
“We will continue to monitor Lloyd Mann Park during this phase to ensure the colony has relocated, and will continue dispersal activities if the need arises,” he said.
“Our team would like to hear from residents who may know of any other areas where flying foxes are roosting within public areas in the town area, so we can act quickly to prevent a colony setting up a roost.”
Mr Mulcahy said Council undertook the controlled dispersal of the bats to ensure the safety and amenity of residents surrounding the roost.
“The roost is in a public park, which unfortunately is just not a suitable location,” he said.
“People are concerned about the possibility of infection from bats, but the chances are actually remote.
“The main concern is the Australian bat lyssavius, which is transmitted via the saliva of infected bats when they bite or scratch humans.
“There are two simple ways to avoid being infected – don’t handle bats unless you are trained in handling them and are vaccinated against rabies and if you’re bitten or scratched by a bat wash the wound thoroughly, apply antiseptic and seek immediate medical advice about receiving injections to protect you against the virus.
“Bats are also natural hosts of the Hendra virus and horses can be infected through the consumption of contaminated food.”
For further information regarding bats please visit Council’s website or call us on 4783 9800.