Western Australian Naturalists Club

Encouraging the study and protection of the natural environment

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Bats in the Perth Hills – live bats at the DRB Nats

8 February, 7:15 pm-9:30 pm


Tony Hodge – our guest speaker – is a bat carer. Yes, his job is to look after sick and injured bats. He will bring some live bats with him. “I have a degree in Zoology & Botany and worked at Perth Zoo for 7 years. I am a keen naturalist, and have volunteered at Kanyana for 4 years, I became interested in bat caring after attending a talk by Blanka van Duyn, one of Kanyana’s early bat carers. I have been a bat carer ever since. We now have a bat care group, which encompasses carers from Kanyana, Darling Range and Native Arc. We mainly get the 3 common species of bats, Gould’s wattled bats, Southern forest bats and Lesser long-eared bats.”

Talk: You will learn about the following:

  1.  Peoples’ ideas about bats.
  2.  The bats found in the Perth Hills.
  3.  Bat phylogeny.
  4.  Bat ecology and how it links to morphology.
  5.  Bat conservation.
  6.  What we do at Kanyana for bat rehabilitation.

If you’d like to read an article about Tony’s work, go here: The lowdown on Perth bat caring

Here is a short extract from it. It turns out there’s a range of reasons why injured or homeless bats are found. “Some have been attacked by birds, others stuck in swimming pools. Often on really hot days they are found dehydrated.” “And then you get juveniles that leave the roost early and can’t get back,” he says. Others are found in ‘torpor’ which is a micro-hibernation state, where body metabolism reduces in times of cold temperatures, or low food supply. It generally lasts 2 – 3 days. “The first time I saw a bat in torpor I thought it was dead, so they really do shut down and just hang there’,” Tony says.

Love at first bite! Baby bats around a month old weigh a mere 2.3g and still have their eyes closed, while adults are 15 – 20g. And they can reach around 20 years in age. When the bats are first in his care, Tony feeds them mealworms between dusk and bedtime. He raises the mealworms on site. He also has a flight aviary out the back with hollows drilled into logs, and that’s where they learn to fly. “I use a night trap to catch lots of moths and flying things.” “And also breed pantry moths, which are a lot slower but full of nutrition. So perfect bat flying training material.”

Target audience: Ideal for both children and adults. Bring the whole family – aged 6yrs -106yrs are all welcome, we are an energetic, enthusiastic and inter-generational club.


  1. Kids’ talk – One of our younger members Kiska Carter (aged 11) will be giving the 5 minutes kids’ talk: “My holiday report from Ningaloo”.
  2. Apps for Nats: Kendra Campbell, will be presenting the following App on Wattle ID: http://identic.com.au/blog/wattle-acacias-of-australia-media-release
  3. Monthly nature competition for children. When a child (under 16) comes along to a meeting they are invited to bring a drawing, craft work, story, study or video on the topic to the next meeting. Small prizes are given each month. Thus, any child who was at our December talk on nature photography, can enter the competition this month.
  4. “Nature road show”. Members and visitors are encouraged to bring items to place on the display table or to send photographs to Rachel in advance, e.g. a sample flower, a sample of geology, an insect, and so on – anything of natural history interest that has legally been obtained. One of our experts will identify them or briefly talk about them, or the person bringing them can talk about where they saw it, etc. If you wish to show a photograph please email it, no later than the day before, to Rachel, our MC, and she will include it on her PowerPoint slides: DRB@wanaturalists.org.au
  5. Raffle: We are raising money for our DRB elders strategy and will have a raffle – please bring all your spare change! We will have a original drawing of a bat as a prize, a kangaroo paw and a book on native orchids. Great value!

Time: Please come early at 7.15pm for a 7.30pm start as it will be a very popular night and we start promptly. We are open from 7pm. We finish at 9.30pm.

Venue: “Home of the DRB”, Jorgensen Park Pavilion, Crescent Road, off Mundaring Weir Road, Kalamunda, Western Australia.

Level: This will be suitable for anyone who loves wildlife, scientists to amateurs, children to elderly adults! … Bring the whole family – aged 6yrs onwards.

Donation: We invite a donation of $3 per person for adult members ($0 for child members), and $5 per adult visitor and $1 per visiting child. Includes tea and coffee and home-made cake and biscuits (including gluten free)! Please bring the right cash to help us avoid long queues. Thanks. No EFTPOS is available.

Door prizes: You could also be the lucky winner of a door prize. We make sure there are prizes for both members and visitors.

Bookings: Bookings are not required. Come early to get a seat at the front as this will be a VERY popular night. Doors open at 7pm.


8 February
7:15 pm-9:30 pm
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Rachel Green: DRB@wanaturalists.org.au ph: 0436-448-647


Tony Hodges
Bats in the Perth Hills


Jorgensen Park Pavilion…
Jorgensen Park Pavilion, end of Crescent Rd, Off Mundaring Weir Road,
Kalamunda, WA 6076 Australia
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