GOING BATTY: Thousands of bats roosting in trees behind Catalina Golf Club are causing angst for golfers such as Ruth Hooper, Pat Sly, Marie McNeil, and Barbara Day. PHOTO: LACHLAN THOMPSON.
After two major blackouts in a matter of days, Essential Energy crews took action yesterday to try to prevent flying foxes causing further power outages in Batemans Bay.
Two-metre fibreglass cross-arms were inserted in a one-kilometre section of powerline through the trees at Catalina golf course to prevent the lines clashing together when the flying foxes land on them in large numbers.
Essential Energy regional manager Phillip Green said the company was determined to beat the bats.
“The problem occurs at dusk when the bats take off in large numbers from their roosts,” Mr Green said.
“We will widen the distance between several spans of powerlines to prevent the bats from clashing the wires together.
“By increasing the separation distance, the chances of wires coming together and causing power interruptions are reduced.”
The crews worked on powerlines along Heron Road at the back of the golf club, and near the cemetery off the Princes Highway.
Mr Green said about 140 customers were affected by the work between 9am and 2pm yesterday.
Meanwhile, golfers on the Catalina course are also falling foul of the bats.
Golf regulars Ruth Hooper, Barbara Day, Marie McNeil and Pat Sly say the greens are often “sticky” from flying fox droppings.
“We have to putt through their poo,” said Mrs Sly.
With thousands of bats roosting in nearby she-oaks, the women say they have hygiene concerns and come armed with umbrellas and hand sanitisers.
“The smell, the stink is unbelievable. Yes, it is spoiling our golf,” said Mrs Hooper.
“We have our eyes on the bats flying over instead of the balls. You don’t want them to pee on you.”