The Bat House


Many visitors to Cape Tribulation will leave shaking their heads in amazement after having met one of the more fascinating inhabitants of the rainforest - a flying fox. As rainforest ambassadors, they are unrivalled - friendly, intelligent and definitely with personality plus. They are great show-stoppers and crowd pleasers, and great for getting visitors to start asking questions about the rainforests (as well as losing their fear of bats).

The Bat House is so named because there is always a flying fox in attendance. These primates are mostly orphans, which for one reason or another have been in captivity too long to be allowed to enter the wild, which must usually occur no later than 6 months after birth.

Entrance to the Bat House is by a $5.00 (AU) entry fee (cheaper than a beer and a lot more interesting!). Proceeds from the Bat House fund the research activities of the Cape Tribulation Tropical Research Station, feed the resident fox colony and help the yearly rescue of spectacled flying foxes, orphaned through tick paralysis, in areas of the Atherton Tableland to the west of Cairns. We also sell books, T-shirts, batty stuff and local memorabilia. All Bat House staff are volunteers.

Besides giving visitors the opportunity to meet a flying fox, the Bat House provides environmental and tourist information on the region, and the research activities of the Station are highlighted.

Prior to the Bat House being built in 1991, the land around it had been cleared for grazing and orchards by previous owners. An intensive re-vegetation and replanting effort was put in place and the land is vastly recovered.

The building is a passive solar design, and operating power is provided by a bank of solar collectors on the roof. The toilets are compost systems (Maxi-Rotaloo), which get fairly heavy use as public toilets (no breakdowns) are non-odiferous and use no water.

Bat House 1990The Bat House in 1990 - just completed and the first regeneration plantings are in place. Compare this with the same view taken this year! The whole area had been cleared for cattle in the 1970's, and 80% of the property was grass when we purchased it.


A must do place to visit & support

Many thanks today to Hugh and especially Laura for her time and wealth of knowledge and for doing an interview with us today for The Australian Anti Shark Finning Alliance FNQ wildlife doco.

Please support Bat House and its important.


Mick Dowers
The Australian Anti Shark Finning Alliance