Flying foxes are a vital part of Australian ecosystems | Letter – Rights History
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Flying foxes are a vital part of Australian ecosystems | Letter

They may be noisy and cause annoyance, but trees rely on them for pollination and seed dispersal, writes Lawrence Pope

While I understand that some native animals are not everyone’s cup of tea, it is well to remember that ancient Indigenous Australia would also like things to go back to the way they were before Europeans arrived, and to “have a nice environment” (‘I don’t know where else to turn’: the grey-headed flying foxes driving rural towns batty, 22 December). Since 1900 we have destroyed an area the size of Germany of this species’ habitat and reduced them to 5% of their original number. Starvation is a big killer.

The voices heard “all night” by residents in Tenterfield, New South Wales – where a flying fox camp has settled in the trees of Millbrook Park each spring since 2019 – are bubs calling for their mum. Each mother’s single pup will be fed in the morning when she returns. That is, of course, if she can find enough nectar, pollen or fruit to eat to produce the milk she needs to feed her young.

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