Date
21 January 2017
A box of apples is shown in a ParknShop in North Point where a bat helped itself to the fruit. Photos: Google Map, Apple Daily
A box of apples is shown in a ParknShop in North Point where a bat helped itself to the fruit. Photos: Google Map, Apple Daily

Apple-eating bat becomes a supermarket sensation

It takes some luck to see a bat up close in Hong Kong, let alone in a supermarket.

That is why shoppers at a ParknShop in North Point were shocked to see one inside the store, Apple Daily reports.

A man, surnamed Poon, first spotted the mammal tucking into an apple on a shelf about 6 p.m. on Tuesday.

A rat in a supermarket is scary enough but a bat is horrifying, especially a big one at that, he said.

Poon apparently recovered from the shock and soon after, things settled down as if the incident was nothing.

But a bat in a brightly lit store during daytime is like a fish out of water — it’s completely out of place

Most bats live in dark, dank caves and probably like blood more than apples.

Curious customers gathered around, snapping away on their smartphones.  

But not everybody was impressed.

A  ParknShop spokesman complained that the bat had destroyed a box of apples and that shop workers were left to clean up the mess.

Shek Chung-tong, a wetland and fauna conservation officer in the agriculture department, said bats are not fond of apples and are afraid of humans.

But they are known to sometimes forage for food before nightfall, although usually not in complete daylight, he said.

Shek identified the bat from photos as cynopterus sphinx, one of 27 species found in Hong Kong.

There are about 800 such bats in different parts of the city. They are categorized by the government as protected wild animals.

This one likely came from the North Point foothills and wandered into the shop looking for food, Shek said.

He said people should not panic when they encounter a bat but urged whoever might have touched anything that came in contact with the animal to wash up.

– Contact us at [email protected]

TL/AC/RA

EJI Weekly Newsletter