Nature conservation

Threatened species

Grey-headed Flying-fox (Pteropus poliocephalus)

Saving our Species strategy

This species has been assigned to the Landscape species management stream under the Saving our Species (SoS) program.

Justification for allocation to this management stream

This species is distributed across relatively large areas and is subject to threatening processes that generally act at the landscape scale (e.g. habitat loss or degradation) rather than at distinct, definable locations.

Conservation status

Management objectives

This SoS strategy aims to ensure that the species is secure in the wild in NSW and that its NSW geographic range is extended or maintained and maintain its conservation status under the BC Act.

Species sightings and management sites across NSW

The map below displays the species’ distribution in NSW, based upon the species’ geographic range, habitat distribution or area of occupancy (to as high a resolution as available data allow, using a range of data sources).

Information about the species’ habitat and ecology is available here.

The map may also display one or more management sites where management of important populations is underway. More information is available in the tables below.


The species occurs in the following IBRA (Interim Biogeographic Regionalisation for Australia) regions in NSW:

Brigalow Belt South
Darling Riverine Plains
New England Tablelands
NSW North Coast
NSW South Western Slopes
South East Corner
South Eastern Highlands
South Eastern Queensland
Sydney Basin

Proportion of the species' distribution on reserve

15% of the species' distribution occurs on reserve (within NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service estate).

Critical actions for this species

The key threats to the viability of landscape-managed species are loss, fragmentation and degradation of habitat, and widespread pervasive factors such as impacts of climate change and disease. Many of these threats are addressed by NSW planning, native vegetation, and biodiversity legislation, policy and programs including the offsets program (BioBanking, NSW Biodiversity Offsets Policy for Major Projects), Biodiversity Certification, management of environmental water and reservation under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974.

Threats to this species are outlined here.

The actions listed in the action toolbox are supplementary to NSW legislation, policy and programs and can be used by stakeholders, where applicable to guide management at a site, regional or state scale.

Action toolbox

Action DescriptionScale
Increase the extent and viability of foraging habitat for the Grey-headed Flying-fox that is productive during winter and spring through dedicated habitat creation and restoration using guides published by OEH (in preparation). Site, Area
Negotiate agreements with landholders, particularly in-perpetuity covenants or stewardship agreements that promote the protection and retention of high quality foraging habitat and roost sites for grey-headed flying-foxes. Site, Area
Rehabilitate degraded flying-fox roost sites through weed management, planting new roost trees, managing understorey vegetation to maintain suitable microclimate conditions, establishing buffers between roost camps and nearby human settlements to minimise conflict. Site
Conduct dedicated engagement programs in communities affected by flying-fox roost sites, building the capacity of all stakeholders to engage in the process of decision-making and developing camp management plans. Provide information about mitigating the impacts of flying-foxes on nearby residences and businesses such as strategic vegetation management, and structural modifications like double-glazing, air conditioning and shade cloths. Site
Distribute public education materials to land managers and local community groups working with contentious flying-fox roost sites highlighting species status, reasons for being in urban areas, reasons for decline etc. Site
Develop site-based heat stress response protocols for camps likely to be affected by heat stress events. Protocols should be based on best practice guidelines (, and should be implemented by licensed fauna rehabilitators. Data should be recorded to inform future management of heat stress events ( Site

How will this species be managed?

Key management sites for this threatened species are being identified by the NSW Government and other program partners, where feasible, cost-effective and beneficial management actions can be undertaken. Currently, 3 management sites have been identified for this threatened species.

Management sites

Click on column headers to sort
Site nameSite typeStatusLocal government area (LGA)
State-wide Priority management siteActive  
Coffs Creek Priority management siteActive  
Coffs Coast Priority management siteActive  

Are you or is someone you know doing conservation work for this species or in this area?

Contact us to tell us about the work. Your input will help OEH evaluate the status of threatened species and provide a broader picture of conservation work across NSW.