Saturday, July 10, 2010

Have you seen bats recently?

I live in the countryside and used to see bats every summer - one even made its way into my flat a few years ago. This year i haven't spotted any and am very worried.

Bats capture insects such as flies, mosquitoes, and certain moths that are agricultural pests. Certain bat species can capture their own weight in insects each night and eat several hundred small insects in one hour.

No surprise that the absence of bats around my flat coincided with a dramatic increase in mosquitoes. This summer i can't sit on my terrace because of them, and they bite even during the day.

This increase in mosquitoes has prompted the FEHD (Food and Environmental Hygiene Department) to spray more toxic chemicals - they even sprayed my basil and rosmarin plants and i couldn't use their leaves for cooking. It's a vicious circle, the more they spray the more resistant the mosquitoes become, and the less birds and bats we see.

In Europe they use bats for mosquito control, and the Environmental Protection agencies encourage people to hang a small bat house outside their windows, why don't they do that in HK??? Why do we never learn from nature instead of relying on chemicals?
I bet it's because bats are free, chemicals cost money and a lot of people profit from manufacturing and selling them.

I would prefer my taxes were spent to benefit the environment instead of damaging it. Is it too much to ask?

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