IN the past week the nomadic little red flying foxes have returned to the Sunshine Coast area.
Councillor Jenny McKay, who holds the environment portfolio, says the little critters will enjoy a brief stay.
"Little red flying foxes travel from the northern and western areas of Queensland to feed on local flowering plants such as eucalypts, bloodwoods and myrtles," she said.
"They are night-time pollinators and this makes flying foxes essential to many of our local eucalypts whose flowers only open at night.
"By pollinating eucalypts around Queensland, flying foxes are increasing koala habitat and keeping our native forests genetically healthy."
Councillor Stephen Robinson said council officers would be monitoring the visitors as part of the Environment Levy Program, which was focused on protecting and enhancing the region's valuable natural assets and wildlife.
"It has been indicated that due to drought conditions in western Queensland and subsequent scarcity of food resources, more little reds will head to food-rich coastal areas such as the Sunshine Coast," he said.
"These small reddish-brown mammals have been spotted in the Coolum, Maroochydore and Tooway Lake areas over the past week.
"They tend to be more vocal than black and grey-headed flying foxes and the roosts may be a bit noisier as they jostle for prime positions within the camp.
"They should be returning to the maternity camps in north and western Queensland by late March."
Interested in finding out more about flying foxes?
Join Martin Fingland from Geckoes Wildlife in one of the "Secret life of flying foxes" sessions at Sunshine Coast libraries in February and March. Visit council's library website for further information.