Grey-headed Flying-fox (Pteropus poliocephalus)
52 million years ago, our early mammal ancestors living on a hotter, drier planet, developed something remarkable…the power of flight! This group of mammals, the bats, have since diversified across the globe into over 1,200 species. Here in South East Queensland, they have evolved into a spectrum of sizes, shapes and colours each suited perfectly to an important role in our ecosystem. From pest controllers to pollinators, they are vital pieces of a grand puzzle, but for some people, they can be perceived very differently. In recent years many bat species have declined extensively and there is now evidence that this could have drastic consequences for us too. This is the story of the Grey-headed Flying Fox.
The spectacle of hundreds of flying-foxes gliding into roost across our cities and towns is fast disappearing. The species is now protected by law but its population is still declining. In this episode of ‘Back from the Brink’ we look at how it is possible to live alongside this remarkable flying mammal, and how it’s survival directly impacts the future of all life in South East Queensland.