Monitoring flying-fox camps and populations

National Flying-fox Monitoring Program data helps us improve our understanding of flying-fox population trends, and better manage their conservation and impacts on communities.

The National Flying-fox Monitoring Program (NFFMP) began in 2013 and is a collaborative project between federal and state governments and CSIRO.

The aim of the program is to establish a reliable benchmark for the size of flying-fox populations in 2013 and to monitor population trends in later years. 

During the day, flying-foxes congregate to roost in patches of trees, known as camps. Quarterly counts are carried out at all known camps of grey-headed and spectacled flying-foxes across both species national ranges. The counts use a robust CSIRO monitoring methodology.

Benchmark census

The first full NFFMP census of grey-headed flying-foxes took place on 14 to 16 February 2013 and was the most comprehensive survey ever undertaken for this species. The CSIRO has released results from quarterly counts since then and they are published on the Australian Government Monitoring Flying-Fox Populations website. The results are intended as indicative advice only.

Project outcomes

The information collected improves our understanding of the distribution and population trends of grey-headed flying-foxes and this helps us conserve and manage the species. 

Results of the program are also helping us respond to public concerns about the impact of flying-foxes on industry, agriculture and public health, including Hendra outbreaks. 

Visit the Australian Government Monitoring Flying-Fox Populations website for more information.

Interactive web viewer

An interactive flying-fox web viewer has been developed to present the camp census data collected by the NFFMP. With the viewer you can explore flying-fox camps and the numbers of each species counted over time. This information spans the data gathered since November 2012.

Visit the interactive web viewer for more information.

How do I report a flying-fox camp?

If you're aware of flying-fox camps that contain either grey-headed or spectacled flying-foxes that are not shown on the interactive web tool, there are 3 ways report the camp:

When you report a flying-fox camp, try to include:

  • where the camp is located, including geographical coordinates
  • how long flying-foxes have been using the site
  • estimated numbers of flying-foxes
  • the species of flying-foxes, if known.