Microbats in the Sydney Region

The Sydney Basin supports a rich microbat fauna of at least 19 species.

Roosting

  • Four species are predominantly cave-roosting, sheltering during the day in caves, mines, tunnels, culverts and stone basements.
  • The remaining 15 species roost during the day in tree hollows, under bark and in buildings.

Gould’s wattled bat (Chalinolobus gouldii) is the only species that has been regularly recorded roosting in buildings within the Sydney area.

Large bent-wing bat (Miniopterus schreibersii) roosts in man-made structures including a disused railway tunnel, water reservoir, disused military bunkers, a water diversion tunnel and stormwater drains.

Conservation

  • For tree-roosting microbats, conservation of forests is the only reliable method of providing adequate daytime roosting resources for these species
  • Provision of artificial nest boxes in urban areas may augment roosting habitat for some species

Threats

  • Habitat destruction for residential and other development
  • Accumulation of contaminants – organochlorines and other compounds in wood preservatives, herbicides and pesticides
  • Motor vehicle impact
  • Cat predation, especially for slow-flying species that forage near the ground eg. Lesser long-eared bat (Nyctophilus geoffroyi

What you can do

  • Keep cats indoors, especially at night
  • Build and install a roosting box: Download¬†Microbat_Bat_Boxes
  • Minimise use of herbicides and pesticides
  • Help conserve old growth forests

More information

The information on this page was taken from Glenn Hoye’s presentation, October 1996.
Download this PDF containing more excerpts:Microbats_in_the_Sydney_Region

Commonly-asked questions are answered in this fact sheet:Microbats_-_Fact_Sheet

Visit:

Australian Museum

Microbats: the insect terminators