Residents concerned over increasing swarms of bats in Lugazi town

Swarm of Bats

Buikwe, Uganda | URN | Residents in Lugazi town, Buikwe district are restless over the increasing numbers of bats in the area.

A large group of bats invaded the town on Tuesday 3rd, November 2020 but the residents say the number is increasing.

The bats descended in trees at the formerly known mayor’s gardens located in the center of the town. They mainly cause panic among residents by flying in space making noise whenever there is noise and alarm made by vehicles.

Trees in the mayor’s garden have been providing shelter to many vendors selling simple foods and produce such as maize, sweet bananas, sweet plantains and second hand merchandise including shoes. But all have been forced to vacate the place because of the bats.

Annet Nalubega, one of the banana vendors says they have been forced to vacate the place since bats are making noise and the smell is preventing their customers from buying.

Steven Mugoya, a councilor for Kikawula at Lugazi municipality says much as bats may be useful to the community, they are also dangerous because they could cause diseases such as scabies.

“They are too many in town, the government should come in to prevent more invasion before they cause any disease spread to our people,” he added.

The Lugazi Central Division chairperson Steven Mpiima says they have notified the responsible department in the municipal to examine whether they are dangerous or not. He reveals that they have learnt that some have started crossing into people’s houses.

He also appeals to the government to intervene as quick as possible to avoid unnecessary expenditures once they turn out to be dangerous. “We have never had such invasion of bats in our area, we are greatly scared right now,” he added.

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The Lugazi veterinary Dr James Kabanda says they are yet to force them out of the area calling upon people to remain calm saying the bats are not harmful.

“We are yet to take action against them to ensure that they migrate to another place to avoid making our town dirty,” he added.

Dr. Kabanda says bats and people can co-exist since bats provide numerous benefits. He however warns residents to avoid getting in contact with dead or any bats since they transmit bacteria which may cause different infections.