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From a Dream to a Reality: South Africa's First Free-Tailed Bat Flight Cage

The Free-tailed bat flight cage has been a dream of ReWild Rehabilitation Centre for as long as they can remember! It was a massive project and not an easy one as this huge flight cage spans 432m2 and had to be specially designed to meet the Free-Tails specific flight needs. It cost R220,000 ($12,000) and took 10 months to complete. Scales Conservation Fund is extremely proud to have been an integral part of this project, by securing a grant of R119,000 from Lush Charity Pot to get the project off the ground, and then through our continued fundraising efforts with physical events and online campaigns, Scales was able to provide an additional R62,500 towards the full cost of the project.

Without a flight cage for release preparation free-tailed bats can't go free as they would be unable to sustain flight, end up on the ground and succumb to predators or starvation. We are so happy to see the first bats being able to spread their wings in this unique flight cage so they can build up the flight muscles needed for release back into the wild. This specialised flight cage is the only one in the country and will not only enable Free-tailed bats that arrive for rehabilitation at ReWild a safe place to become flight ready for release but is available to all Free-Tailed bats at other centres.

Check out our video tour of South Africa's first Free-Tailed Bat Flight Cage with commentary from Jane Burd, ReWild Founder

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