Volume 18
Issue 3

Every year, BCI sponsors an award for the best conservation paper presented at the Australasian Bat Conference. This year, the award went to Jeff Simmons, an electricity linesman who found a way to reduce the number flying foxes electrocuted on power lines.

Bats typically land on one line, then brush their wings against another, which completes the circuit and results in electrocution. Simmons discovered that by spreading electrical cables farther apart on utility pole cross arms, wider than the bats’ wing spans, he could prevent electrocution. It is likely that Queensland’s electric company will adopt Simmons’ new cable placement recommendations, saving the lives of numerous flying foxes each year.

Jeff Simmons’ recommendations for positioning utility cables will save numerous grey-headed flying foxes annually.