As many as 25 fruit bat carcasses were recovered from the Tumakuru district while being transported in a four-wheeler on Wednesday night. While the 34-year-old man ferrying the dead fruit bats was arrested, his three aides managed to escape when stopped by forest department officials at Hanumanthapura.
As reported by TOI, Range Forest Officer Nataraja L informed that a nylon net used to capture and kill the mammals was recovered from the vehicle carrying the carcasses. As per forest officials, fruit bats are killed for meat and supplied to Tumakuru and Bengaluru.
Taking cognizance of the matter, deputy conservator of forests S Ramesh said, “I got information that fruit bats are being killed in the district and sent to non-vegetarian hotels in Tumakuru and other areas. The department will step up patrolling and take action to prevent such incidents.”
“Killing fruit bat for meat rampant”
As per Times Now report, Environmentalist BV Gundappa said, “Killing fruit bats for meat is rampant in Devarayanadurga forest, Jagannathapura, Sira taluk and Huliyurdurga of Kunigal taluk in Tumakuru.”
The large-eyes bats fly out in search of fruits and get trapped in the nylon nets erected between trees where they are found the most. People then gather them from the nets, put them in bags and sell. The bat meat seller sits at one place, sends out a message to the villagers who then come and purchase the meat, informed the environmentalist.
Gundappa further informed that only two types of bats: Salim Ali’s Fruit Bats and Wroughton’s Free-Tailed Bats are legally protected under the Wildlife Protection Act. Since others are considered ‘vermin’, killing bats for meat is rampant in some areas.