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7 March 2011 - Flying-foxes get a last minute reprieve from the NSW Government      

Flying-foxes get a last minute reprieve from the NSW Government

7 March 2011                  

Humane Society International (HSI) today welcomed announcements by both the State Government and the NSW Liberals & Nationals to end the licensed shooting of flying-foxes in NSW.

In a last minute decision before entering the caretaker period the NSW State Government announced that farmers who are affected by flying-foxes would be given more than $5 million in financial assistance towards the installation of full exclusion netting around orchards, accompanied by a phase-out over a three year period of the licensed shooting of flying-foxes.

The ending of the barbaric practice of the licensed shooting of one of our threatened native species is a welcome decision that cannot come soon enough” said HSI’s Alexia Wellbelove

HSI further welcomed the news that the NSW Liberals & Nationals, should they form Government post this month’s election, would further improve on the Government’s commitment by phasing out shooting within a two year period.

“This long-awaited commitment to end licensed shooting is a great relief to HSI, but it is essential that shooting is banned as soon as possible with no phase-in period. Only an immediate ban on the shooting of flying-foxes can avoid this unnecessary cruelty” concluded Alexia Wellbelove.


  • Licenses are given to stone fruit growers to shoot and maim approximately a thousand grey-headed flying-foxes a year
  • NSW is the only state in Australia which issues licenses to shoot grey-headed flying-foxes, which are listed as threatened species under both state and federal legislation
  • HSI was responsible for the nomination of the grey-headed flying-fox, subsequently listed under federal legislation in 2001
  • A 2009 expert review panel told the Environment Minister that the animal welfare issues arising from shooting flying-foxes are ‘unacceptable ethically and legally’
  • Report on deaths and injuries to Grey-headed Flying-foxes, Pteropus poliocephalus shot in an orchard near Sydney, NSW http://hsi.org.au/editor/assets/Actions/Report_for_orc_%20shoot_2007.pdf
  • For more information about HSI’s long-running campaign to end the shooting of flying-foxes see http://hsi.org.au/index.php?catID=263

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