Batty Boat cruises. They are not all batty – though you hope that a majority are!
[ADVERT]The cruises are run by the Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland, Brisbane Branch and perhaps there was an element of battiness in the concept but it is a good one and one which I whole-heartedly support.
This is a cruise mainly about bats. They are also called flying foxes, I suppose because their tiny faces do resemble foxes. Bats, throughout the years, have not had a great reputation mainly because they have been known to spread disease and carry a form of rabies. These facts aside, there are a lot of things that make bats important, and while we may choose not to handle them we actually need to think actively about their preservation and survival. Here we encounter two types, the bigger flying foxes and the smaller insectivorous ones. The flying foxes are quite important to the environment, for seed dispersal and pollination.
One of the reasons I am writing about this is because when the boat cruises started back in 1984 there were over 160 000 bats flying out every night, or near those numbers, from Indooroopilly Island. Nowadays the numbers are way, way down and according to the organizers they are falling drastically every year. Part of it is changing habitats and this is a huge issue in areas like Brisbane where the city is expanding so quickly and where remote habitats come within the city boundaries.
It is a wonderful way to spend a Sunday evening; travelling down the Brisbane River at dusk, perhaps further than most of you have travelled, enjoying the beautiful vistas, and the tranquility of the water with a drink or some nibbles from the bar.
While on the cruise there is very interesting commentary about bats and often orphaned baby bats are brought along so people can see how sweet they are and deserving of our attention.
The Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland does a fantastic job of supporting our wildlife and I understand what a hard task they have on their hands.Going along on the cruise helps raise funds, and awareness and you may find yourself drawn to their activities, their wonderful free public lectures and become an active member of the Society.
So if you are interested in any of these and for finding out about the next batty boat cruise see the Wildlife QLD website.
We went on it and really enjoyed the information we picked up, the people we met, and the changing colours and light of the Brisbane River at dusk. So check out their website and book your place on the next cruise.