Or- Bats. Hand-wing.
Our friend Maz thought the girls might like to go to a bat talk tonight, at a park called The Knob Reserve. The Knob is a nearly natural reserve of gum trees and native grasses- an isolated remnant of what was here over 200 years ago.
A specialist in fauna in the Gippsland region was prepared to talk about the bats in the area, and with luck, even capture some in a Bat Harp Net. The link says it all!
Jim gave a talk, suitable for the children that came with their parents, with questions and answers, all working towards the subject. Some tiny preserved carnivorous marsupials and bats were on display too.
Then we all set off over a creek and up a trail to set up the trap, then wandered back for a barbecue waiting for deeper twilight and time for the bats to get trapped.
After the barby, we set off to the trap, walking this time around a little waterhole.
I whispered to Harry- “But there has not been a ‘bat=shadow’ on the clouds- how do we know there are any out there?”
Jim had a tricky device that picked up the sounds emitted by the bats that were catching insects all around us, the micro bats. The device recorded all the sounds and later he would work out which types of the species were present, and add the information to a huge data-base (I did not get the address) of fauna in Australia- like a census thing.
There are supposed to be thirteen types in the area and there was definitely a few different types flying around over the reeds in the gloom by the sounds coming from the magic box! Some torches even caught a few zooming after the bugs!
SpotlightAt the guess-timated “bat-corridor”, the trap was empty.
Just like fishing. Ya win, ya lose.
Ah well. A beetle fell in. Waited a few more minutes, as human scents attract insects that the bats like. Like! Like mosquitoes- BAH! Still naught. Then we packed up and walked back to the cars and came home.
An enjoyable little summers evening jaunt in the country. Thanks Maz.