Monitoring Flying-Fox Populations
National Monitoring Methodology
The CSIRO has developed a scientifically rigorous monitoring methodology to gather updated information about the status of the national grey-headed flying-fox population and population trends (see below). The Commonwealth and state governments are working together to implement a multi-year monitoring program, based on the CSIRO's methodology (see below).
- A monitoring method for the grey-headed flying-fox, Pteropus poliocephalus (PDF - 1,127 KB) | (Word - 4,209 KB)
National Flying-Fox Monitoring Program
On 29 July 2011, the Australian Government announced a new commitment of $6 million for Hendra virus research, including $1 million from the Department of Sustainability Environment Water Populations and Communities (DSEWPaC). Australian Government Hendra funding will complement contributions of $3 million each from the NSW and Queensland Governments. The National Hendra Virus Research Program has allocated $9 million to a number of Hendra virus, human health and flying-fox related research projects which will continue until 2015. The National Health and Medical Research Council has also allocated $3 million to research projects to better understand and fight Hendra virus.
Six new research projects totaling just over $2 million were announced on 31 May 2012, including $794,717 to CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences (Dr David Westcott) for the project 'Implementing a national flying-fox monitoring program' (NFFMP). The Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities approved an additional $700,000 towards the NFFMP under the Emerging Priorities program of the National Environment Research Program (NERP). This funding will be used to estimate the accuracy of flying-fox counts made through the NFFMP.
The NFFMP will be focused primarily on monitoring national grey-headed and spectacled flying-fox populations, however within the range of these two species, counts of black and little red flying foxes will be undertaken. The monitoring program will include four census's per year for the first three years. The NFFMP is being coordinated by CSIRO and DSEWPAC with additional resources and support from relevant state governments. CSIRO is also contributing resources into the radio tracking component of the program and working on and funding separately the development of a new generation of energy-efficient technologies that can continuously track the position of flying-foxes.