We work mainly with Spectacled flying foxes (SFF), with up to 1000 coming into care each year – up to 500 relatively healthy orphans, 300 adults with tick paralysis over half of which are dead or euthanased, as well as up to 100 from barbed wire fences. We also get up to 500 Little Red flying foxes off barbed wire fences each year. Our rehabilitation work therefore places us in an ideal position to engage in research. SFFs were listed as Vulnerable to extinction in 2002, but in the last 10 years CSIRO data has shown a more than 50% further decline. There are submissions into the Australian Government now that they be listed as Endangered.
However research is impossible on our own, in terms of both expertise and funding. We therefore welcome partnerships with scientists, veterinarians and others interested in bats. We have links already with various organisations engaged in bat research eg Queensland Parks and Wildlife, James Cook University, CSIRO, Biosecurity Queensland, University of Queensland and others.
Students wishing to undertake projects with us need to be mindful that the bat hospital is not funded, nor is the hospital coordinator on a salary. Students will need to contribute financially, and will be considered according to their individual circumstances eg time required by hospital coordinator before, during and after the project; onsite or offsite accommodation etc