Boiled bats are literally falling from the sky in Australia.
It’s no joke and it’s no exaggeration: the recent heatwave sweeping the country has caused a myriad of unusual phenomena, but this latest event may be most shocking of all.
“It was unbelievable. I saw a lot of dead bats on the ground and others were close to the ground and dying,’’ said Cate Ryan, a volunteer for St Helens Park WIRES, “I have never seen anything like it before.’’
Locals of Campbelltown woke up to a horrifying scene: reports of between 200 to even thousands of flying foxes—another name for a species of bats—were found dead or nearly dead as temperatures soared above 40 degrees Celsius—peaking at around 44 degrees.
“They basically boil,” said Ryan, “It affects their brain—their brain just fries and they become incoherent. It would be like standing in the middle of a sandpit with no shade.”
Animal rescue volunteers leapt into action in an attempt to counter the catastrophe, providing shade and hydration for the animals.
Although around 80 bats were saved, the vast majority—90%— died.
WIRES released the following statement:
“The efforts of our volunteers yesterday was both heroic and heartbreaking. Hundreds of mainly young flying-foxes were lost to the heat yesterday and the final count could run to thousands.”
According to another statement released by a Facebook page called Help Save The Wildlife and Bushlands in Campbelltown:
“It’s devastating when a colony like our local one goes down like this due to heat. This colony needs more canopy cover and shaded areas to help with our ever rising hot summers because this episode will surely not be the last.”
According to experts, temperatures over 30 degrees Celsius are enough to hinder the bats’ overall health. For human adults, 40 degrees can be lethal.