FLYING foxes are in Machattie Park in similar numbers to the 2017-18 summer, but this time it's not cause for alarm.
The 2017-18 summer saw an influx of flying foxes, also referred to as bats, move into the trees in the park.
They damaged the trees and left the park a mess, forcing Bathurst Regional Council to develop a Flying Fox Camp Management Plan.
While bats have been spotted in the park since, the numbers this year are much higher.
However, council's Recreation manager Mark Kimbel said they shouldn't increase any further.
"In 2017-18 the estimated population of the flying fox colony in Machattie Park at its peak was 2000," he said.
"The estimated numbers this year currently stand at 1700 and it is unlikely to increase this season due to the commencement of cooler nights and the pending winter."
While the numbers are similar to the worst season for bats in recent memory, the animals are not doing the same level of damage.
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In fact, more damage has been created by cockatoos.
"Council is not concerned with the current numbers of the colony in Machattie Park," Mr Kimbel said.
"The flying foxes are roosting in various trees within selected areas of the park, which is reducing the ratio of roosting bats per tree. There has been very little damage sustained by the flying foxes.
"There has been some damage sustained to trees and additional plant debris that park staff have been attending to more than usual this season, however this has been caused from cockatoos, not the flying foxes."
Council is keeping a close eye on the situation, with staff monitoring the flying foxes and undertaking park maintenance to keep the amenity of the area.
Residents are advised to avoid the flying foxes and to report any found on the ground to WIRES.
If a person is scratched or bitten, they should wash the wound with soap and water for at least five minutes, then contact their doctor.
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