THE small park and playground at the rear of Lorn shopping centre is cordoned off and overgrown. A camp of flying foxes has colonised the adjoining trees. This is a grave matter, as nearby properties may become almost unsaleable. Lorn is regarded by many as Maitland’s most beautiful suburb and the well-being of its residents must be protected at all costs.
Of course, the flying foxes must be protected, too. They play an important role in dispersing forest seeds, stimulating the regeneration of our forests. Large-scale forest clearing has reduced the bats’ food supply, forcing them from their native habitat into settled areas. The partial destruction of Singleton’s lovely park is testimony to the destructiveness of these mammals.
I suggest that two powerful chainsaws and a gang of council workers would quickly remove the bats’ host trees and hopefully lead them to fly back to their bush origins. They can fly long distances in one night. As replacement trees, I suggest Chinese tallows, which are small and attractive. But not for bats.
Henry Armstrong, Farley