NSW apple and cherry growers Bernard (pictured) and Fiona Hall began installing netting 17 years ago to protect against hail, birds and flying foxes.
By Jeanette Severs
Flying foxes are considered keystone species in the Australian landscape. However, they have significant impact on orchards – even with netting. Predation can result in 5-100 per cent production losses.
The urbanisation of coastal towns, supported by clearing of native vegetation, has led to flying foxes looking to orchards for food sources.
In a comprehensive assessment for the 2017 Raymond Terrace Flying-Fox Camp Management Plan, grey-headed and black flying foxes were found throughout eastern Australia, generally within 200km of the coast, and in Tasmania and South Australia. The report cited research showing … read more