In winter 2010/2011an injured female nyctalus noctula came to our station as a victim of a tree felling near Celle. Since it was clear that she would have to stay longer in the station, we named her Celine.
Longtime we thought, that she will never be able to fly again. But we've trained and trained her, night after night. Celine was really hard working, she couldn't await her training lessons - she really wanted to fly again! She wanted to be free and live in her group. We never had a bat whose wish for freedom was so strong.
Soon she flew a few meters, then she made even smaller fast laps. Celine stood strong, flew on and on until she could fly several rounds.
Then the all-important question: Can Celine take off from the ground? - A take off from the ground for bats requires a lot of strength, but this ability is vital! - Celine struggled a lot, but could not take off from the ground. We practiced again and again. - Then we got more bat patients from a tree felling, they came from Celle, too. Celine trained together with them. She was getting better, but she did not take off from the ground.
Then it was the day, the other nyctalus noctula from Celle were fit for freedom. The next day by 3 p.m. the transport to Celle was scheduled for releasing the bats to freedom. - Celine still could not take off from the ground. - The other nyctalus noctula were carefully placed in their transport boxes and taken to the last vet check, from there it goes on to Celle the next day. - Celine and I were left in the bat station. I realized how Celine was restless, she wanted to go with the other bats and wanted to be free. "The Bat Express" went on to the first stop at the vet. Only a few hours separated the other bats from freedom. - I still had the little Celine in the training room.
Suddenly she wanted to try it again. She circled only a few laps, then I put her on the floor and - YES - she took off from the ground without any help and she flew lap after lap - did not want to stop flying. We repeated the exercise and it worked!
That same evening, we both got into the car and followed the "Bat Express". Once at the vet, Celine climbed into the big boxes where the other bats spent their last night in captivity. The next day we all went to Celle. In the evening all bats got off their transport boxes and one after another climbed into the releasing box at a beautiful place with a lake, fully surrounded by nature. Celine also disappeared in the releasing box.
Later at sunset they flew out - one by one - even Celine. - Her big dream of freedom was finally fulfilled. Due to her strength and her will she now is a proud hunter of the night again and hopefully will soon be a mother of nyctalus noctula babies - wild and free.