The bat rehabilitation centre in Kharkiv/Ukraine is already well-known in bat workers network in Germany, especially for its extraordinary work in bat protection. Every year they rescue and rehabilitate several thousand bats, carry out research and active, practical bat conservation and carry out public educational work – far beyond the borders of Ukraine. Now our friends have come to us with a call for help, as they are in financial distress because of the Corona crisis. We would therefore also like to ask our bat friends in Germany for help with an appeal for donations.
Below is a short explanation of the Bat Rehab Centre. There was also already a detailed report on the work of the Bat Rehab Centre in Nyctalus 19(2).
The Bat Rehabilitation Center in Kharkiv is a unique organization in Ukraine which helps peacefully coexist humans and bats in big urban areas. It was founded in 2013 with the support of Feldman Ecoprak (private zoo).
The Bat Rehabilitation Center team is a group of professional biologists and veterinarians who rescue bats from all over Ukraine 365 days a year. Every year from 1000 to 3000 animals passes through the center and for 8 years of intense work 15 500 bats have been rescued.. Most bats are transferred to the center in winter. Sometimes there are large groups of 100-1000 animals that cannot be released immediately into nature due to harsh winter conditions, therefore they continue hibernation at the facilities of Bat Rehabilitation Center. Citizens also bring many injured bats, which are treated by the only veterinarian-chiropterologist in Ukraine, giving a second chance for survival. The Center takes care of orphaned newborn bats as well. They are fed and are taught how to fly. It became possible due to the construction of the unique bat-collider enclosure located at the Bat Rehabilitation Center in Kharkiv. The large circle enclosure with a diameter of 20 m provides essential space for young bats to master their flight and for harmed bats to get rehabilitated after injuries. Also, Bat Rehabilitation Center provides constant information support regarding bat welfare for citizens and volunteers from all around the world. Every day tens of calls and messages are received at the Bat Rehabilitation call-center. People frequently ask for advice and consultation regarding bats or even bat colonies found in buildings in various settlements in Ukraine, Russia, and all around the world.
Our Bat Center is greatly assisted by volunteers who take part in the feeding of weak bats in wintertime and frequently contribute with buying food for numerous inhabitants of the Bat Rehab Center. We have inspired many volunteers and biologists with our dedicated work on rescuing bats. So in 2017, following our example, Rehabilitation Centers were established in Belarus and Russia. Under our close supervision, numerous individual volunteers in many cities start to take care of the injured and orphaned bats. For the past years, our activity significantly raises public awareness about the importance of bats for our ecosystems, improved conservation measures for hibernation colonies in big cities, and by regular lectures in schools and public places we increase the educational level of citizens about bat ecology and welfare.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic we lost our financial support and now have hard times. Please support us in the important mission of bat conservation!
Alona Prylutska (Bat Rehab Center Kharkiv)
Link to the webpage of the Bat Rehab Center: http://www.bat-kharkov.in.ua/en/
You can use Transferwise to donate directly to the Bat Rehab Center clickhere for further information.
Videos from Bat Rehab Center: