The above photo is Bucksy the Brown Long-eared bat.  He was a sweetie, and am so glad that the owner of the house happened to pop into his garage and spot Bucksy before he drowned in the bucket of water, into which he had inadvertently fallen.  This is a timely reminder – Please never leave any receptacle containing any form of liquid open. Any container: wheelbarrows, plant pots, water butts, watering cans and buckets are all able to retain water and be an instant death trap to an unsuspecting bird, reptile or mammal.

On that note though, Bucksy was lucky and survived his near-death experience and, as soon as he was recovered, along with all my rescue bats…he was flown every night.

On the other hand, two of my Pipistrelles: Bella and Nipper, have been continually reluctant and just wanting to hide. When they did attempt to fly, neither could stay airborne for more than a few seconds and were also unable to take off from the ground:  a really important manoeuvre for a bat. So these two continued to be flown in the Puppy Playpen, and when the weather was fine….the mesh tent.  It is a slow process, but once they have learned how to fly from one side of the tent to another with ease, it is absolutely brilliant to then see then fly around and pitch successfully in the bat gym. Bella and Nipper are not quite ready for release as yet, but are definitely on the right path and making good use of our new outdoor extension.  Meanwhile, Bucksy was successfully released and gave a quick display flight to the delight of his finder.

It is so heartwarming to see my rescues each night slowly but surely gaining strength and improving. Some nights it seems like we are taking 2 steps forward and 3 back, but the good news is that with each week they find their wings and come on in leaps and bounds. 🙂  At present, two are almost definitely ready for release. It may be coincidence, but am sure our flight extension work has helped.

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Nature In Fine Art ~ Larmer Studio
Pier Gate Cottage
Rushmore Park
Tollard Royal
Salisbury, Wiltshire
SP5 5QB, United Kingdom

© 2020 Susan Shimeld

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