"Cute, but not cuddly" Top 5 Page for this destination Sydney Harbour National Park Tip by iandsmith

Sydney Harbour National Park, Sydney: 7 reviews and 26 photos

  Coming to a tree near you
by iandsmith

What we have here is a fox. Then again, although they're called flying foxes they are rather obviously related to bats and are often called fruit bats because that's one of the things they eat. If you're thinking you might be lucky to see one, the chances are they're all around you. Even on the streets of cities like Sydney (especially Manly). If you are wandering past a tree at night and hear screeching noises and heavy fluttering, don't panic, it's most likely just a grey-headed flying fox. They mainly diet on nectar and pollen from eucalypts, banksias and melaleucas but, where their habitat has been disturbed (generally by urban development), you may find them dining on fruit from your backyard.
Weighing in at up to a kilogram and with a wing span of up to a metre they have a flight speed of 25km per hour and range up to 30 kilometres from their base using their night vision and sense of smell.
If you look closely at the pic (from a National Parks and Wildlife brochure), you'll note the hooks on their wings that they use to clamber around the branches.
They're cut little critters and the best place I've ever come across to see them is at Wingham on the north coast of N.S.W. where a reserve has been set aside and you can see them by the thousand during the day.
The only problem they have is that they carry a Lyssavirus that can be harmful to man but only if you're actually holding one (an extremely unlikely scenario) and you get bitten or scratched. They are not there to attack you so just enjoy watching them as I do.

Address: Grosvenor Place, P.O. Box N501, New South Wales
Phone: +61 2 9247 5033
Website: http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/nationalparks/parkhome.aspx?id=N0039

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Mar 17, 2005
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