Batty about bats

Why don’t you join the current project – the wonderful world of Cyprus bats? The new project began in summer 2006 when we learned that the fruit bats of Cyprus were unprotected and were being shot for fun.

Bats are strictly protected by law in every EU country including Cyprus, of course. Yet practically no measures had been taken to set up any conservation system more than a decade after bat work had begun in countries such as Ireland or the UK.

In only a few months, ARC had produced posters and leaflets in English, Greek and Turkish. They also succeeded in co-organising the island’s first seminar on bats, which was attended by government personnel from Forestry and other departments.

They also succeeded in getting the Competent Authority (Department of Environment) to erect protective fences around the fruit bats’ cave roosts.

Did you know?
Cyprus is the only EU country to have fruit-eating bats? These megechiropterans (or large bats) may come to your garden to feed,  if you have fig trees or mesphila. You may see the mother bats with their infant clinging to their belly, before the young are able to fly.

Why you are lucky if u have bats visited your garden?
One of the small insect-eating (microchiropteran) bats can eat literally thousands of mosquitoes each evening, amounting to tons in one year. Please don’t spray insecticides – let these harmless little creatures do the job.

What can you do?

- Put up a couple of bat boxes
– Contact ARC for leaflets/ posters to distribute
– Count your bats.
– Contact ARC and they can visit with a bat detector and tell you what species you have.
– Join the bat walk.
– Teachers – ask them to visit your school – use our bat educational worksheets

Silly Myths

- Bats cannot get caught in your hair – their echolocation is so finely tuned that they can detect a spider’s web.
– Bats will collect in your house. Not true. Each bat can only have one baby per year (it is a mammal like us). Bats constantly move – from maternity roosts to hibernation roosts etc.

Resources

  • Join the team and protect the bats
  • See what to do when you see a bat in your house or building.