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Kabra man kicks up a stink about smelly bats in backyard

BAT OF A PROBLEM: Paul Spedding and Chris Gard skim over the Department of Environment and Heritage’s Flying Fox Roost Management Guidelines, which appear to place stringent guidelines on residents who live with the bats.
BAT OF A PROBLEM: Paul Spedding and Chris Gard skim over the Department of Environment and Heritage’s Flying Fox Roost Management Guidelines, which appear to place stringent guidelines on residents who live with the bats. Chris Ison Rokcbats

IMAGINE the sickening stench of red flying fox excrement - multiplied by a thousand.

It's a health and lifestyle hazard Kabra man Paul Spedding has endured for almost a week.

But, no more.

The unwelcome guests, which he believed stormed his home in their tens of thousands, have overrun MrSpedding's Kabra property.

He told The Morning Bulletin yesterday, "You simply can't even hang your washing out on the line."

Mr Spedding lives in an investment home at Gracemere, but often keeps his Kabra home well serviced and the grounds maintained to a high standard. But he said he couldn't even do that.

According to Department of Environment and Heritage Protection guidelines, he cannot mow the lawns at his Kabra home between sunrise and sunset because it may disturb the sleeping bats in his trees.

The guidelines state if "low impact activities", which include mowing, mulching and weeding, are undertaken during the day time, it must stop immediately if 30% or more of adult flying foxes leave the roost for five minutes or more.

"It absolutely stinks at my house," he said.

"We've (he and his family) had to cover our rainwater tanks because now these red bats pose a serious threat to our drinking water.

Rockhampton Regional Council CEO Evan Pardon said he was aware of the problem and the council was working closely with the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (DEHP) to monitor and assess the colony.

"Once this assessment is complete the council will look at the options available and assess the best way to address the issue," he said.

A DEHP spokesman said Mr Spedding was responsible for any costs involved in managing flying foxes on his land.

Private landowners who are suffering economic loss, health or wellbeing from flying-fox roosts can apply to the department management permit.

Topics:  bat colony flying fox kabra


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