Bats terrorise woman
THIS Mermaid Beach woman was advised to wear a hard hat and carry an umbrella in her yard after three bat attacks in two weeks.
Catherine Lynch said she received this advice from the Department of Environment and Resource Management while making a flurry of adrenaline-fuelled calls after a flying fox had become tangled in her hair for the third time.
She said she was first attacked while walking to her corner store, again while walking through her Alec Ave home's side gate and again when turning off her pool filter.
"Each time they were tangled in my hair, and last time I freaked out, went inside and called my dad," Ms Lynch said.
"The last one was bigger than me with its wings outstretched. When you get scratched you have to have all these horrible injections.
"I really think they are ignoring a bad problem, how many have to die before they realise they have to cull them?"
She said she was sympathetic with the Department of Environment and Rresource Management.
"But how can I wheel the bins out wearing a hard hat and carrying an umbrella?
"I rang the council, but it's got nothing to do with them, I spoke to Parks and Wildlife and I spoke to a vet in Toowoomba - they're all s**t scared of the problem up there."
DERM conservation strategy and planning general manager Clive Cook said a DERM ranger had spoken to Ms Lynch and advised there was a low risk of becoming diseased from contact with flying foxes.
"Flying fox bites are rare, but anyone who receives a bite or scratch from a flying fox should seek medical advice," Mr Cook said.
"In Queensland, flying foxes are a protected species and it is an offence to deliberately kill or injure them or interfere with their roosts.
"Landowners and local authorities who demonstrate they are suffering hardship from flying foxes can apply to DERM for a damage mitigation permit."
Ms Lynch said she overheard a scientist at a dinner party saying one sick bat generally meant a colony of sick flying mammals. "I've lived here for eight years and this hasn't happened before. I don't want to be infected and I'm thinking of moving back to Sydney because I'm scared of viruses," she said.