About the fly-out counts

Where and when are they?

There are now two monthly counts, which are held at Yarra Bend near Fairfield, and Doveton, approximately 45 minutes south-east of Melbourne (see map links below).

The Yarra Bend Count

This count in held at dusk on the Wednesday evening closest to the risen full moon. We meet in the car park for the Yarra Bend Park Golf Course, on Yarra Bend Road. We meet approximately 30 mins before dusk to give us enough time to get organised and walk a few hundred metres to the counting positions, which are positioned on and around a golf course. It is important to be in our counting positions on time so we can count the bats as they leave. See the calendar below for the 2017 dates of upcoming counts and meeting times.Follow the link below to see the map of meeting point at Yarra Bend Golf Course car park.

Month Count date Yarra Bend (Always a Wednesday) Meeting time
Jan 12-Jan 20:00
Feb 15-Feb 19:45
Mar 15-Mar 19:00
Apr 12-Apr 17:30
May 10-May 17:15
Jun 14-Jun 17:15
Jul 5-Jul 17:15
Aug 9-Aug 17:30
Sep 6-Sep 17:45
Oct 11-Oct 19:00
Nov 8-Nov 19:30
Dec 6-Dec 20:00

 

https://maps.google.com.au/maps?q=yarra+bend+golf&ie=UTF-8&ei=llJvUuTZGIb8igLwvIGgBg&ved=0CAoQ_AUoAg

The Doveton Count

The Doveton count is held at dusk on the Tuesday  evening closest to the risen full moon. We meet on Floriana Avenue where it intersects  with Dandenong Creek. Please also be mindful of neighbours driveways when parking; and If you can please consider parking on Cootamundara Street, which would then be ~100 m walk to the meeting place. We meet approximately 30 mins before dusk as per the Yarra Bend count. See the calender below for the 2017 dates of upcoming counts and meeting times; and follow the link below for the meeting point.

Month Count date Doveton (Always a Tuesday) Meeting time
Jan 10-Jan 20:00
Feb 2-Feb (held earlier to coincide with world wetland day) 19:45
Mar 14-Mar 19:00
Apr 11-Apr 17:30
May 9-May 17:15
Jun 13-Jun 17:15
Jul 4-Jul 17:15
Aug 8-Aug 17:30
Sep 5-Sep 17:45
Oct 10-Oct 19:00
Nov 7-Nov 19:30
Dec 5-Dec 20:00

Below are the links for Floriana Avenue/Cootamundra Street, Doveton.

https://www.google.com.au/maps/@-37.9782702,145.2383842,17z

https://www.google.com.au/maps/@-37.9782702,145.2383842,16z

What will you need to bring?

During the summer season it’s good to bring some mosquito repellent, wear long sleeves and long pants as the mozzies can be out in force. During winter, wear something to keep you warm. You may want to bring some water, a camera, binoculars, and a torch is always helpful to guide you back to the car park across the golf course.

What happens if the weather is bad?

The bats are not silly and will delay their fly-out if the weather is cold, windy and rainy – a bit like us in the middle of a Melbourne winter!  Therefore, the count will be cancelled on days like that, and all registered counters will be notified by about 3 or 4 pm on the day of the count.

How do you register?

Although it’s not essential to register, it can be helpful to estimate how many counters we’ll have for the night and to advise you if the count has been cancelled due to bad weather. If you want to leave a quick ‘I’m coming’ message on here you can do; and also whether you’ll be coming with friends and or family would be helpful. If you’re unsure if the count is going ahead, please call Rod on 0412 562 429.

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8 thoughts on “About the fly-out counts

  1. Hi I’d like to come along to the Doveton count on the 2nd June with my son (aged 14). Thanks Jacqui & Devon.

    1. Hi Jacqui – you and your son are most welcome at the next count – hopefully it will be better weather than we have had recently! Please just “follow” the blog to ensure you get my reminder a week or so before the count, and also if there are any last minute cancellations if the weather is bad!
      Reagrds, Rod

    1. Yes, that’s correct Zoe. Just turn up at the allocated time (7:45 pm) at the Yarra Bend Gold Course Car Park. People usually gather towards the back of the car park nearer to the course itself. It will be great to see you there!

  2. Hi Rod, interested in getting involved but can you tell me a little bit more about what’s involved? What do volunteers actually do at the count, and roughly how long does it go for? (realising of course bats don’t have watches)

    1. Hi Chris – The bat’s start flying around dusk and the flyout lasts for 20 to 40 mins, depending on the weather, the size of the colony and whether they are hungry or feel like a sleep in!
      We all meet about 45 mins or so before the flyout starts and do a bit of a briefing (or refresher) for any new counters. the vols are then allocated a different spot around the camp, usually in pairs or triplets depending on the number of counters we have. each person is given a clicker/tally counter, and counts their own stream of bats flying out. We then reconvene at the meeting point and give our counts, which get averaged and tallied up, and voila – we have an estimate of colony size!
      I have been doing counts for over 15 years, but seeing a stream of 10 – 15,000 never fails to inspire and amaze!
      If you have any further qns dont hesitate to ask.
      Regards, Rod

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