This megabat, which has an excellent sense of sight and smell, is a nectar specialist, preferring eucalypts. They fly up to 80km a night to find favourite foods, pollinating flowers with their long thin tongues, eating fruit, sap or insects. They are efficient, agile tree climbers, sharing camps with up to many thousand other bats, including other species.
Breeding males defend harems of 2 to 5 females. After mating, females group together until young are born in autumn, then carry them during flight for up to 6 weeks. The infants are then left at the roost until they can fly around camp at two months old, reaching maturity at 2 years. In dry weather, they dip in water, hang, and flap air over their wet fur to cool down.
Size: Wingspan 1m
Illustration: Mark Trinham