The need for aversion agents for managing flying-foxes on crops and the difficulties in attracting research funds
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John R. Bicknell, 2002. "The need for aversion agents for managing flying-foxes on crops and the difficulties in attracting research funds", Managing the Grey-headed Flying-fox: As a Threatened Species in NSW, Peggy Eby, Daniel Lunney
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No research funds have been made available to produce aversion agents and/or tactics to reduce the need for orchardists to cull flying-foxes to protect their crops. This has occurred despite many years of effort by growers to attract research funds from government and industry groups. It appears the research needed to manage flying-foxes on crops is far from complete and there has been no summary or correlation of the many research papers published that suggests a way forward. Now that the Grey-headed Flying-fox has been listed as Vulnerable, I have the fear that orchardists will lose out as some bat carers and researchers may not support research into aversion agents. Orchardists have been badly let down on all counts as research funds have not been forthcoming, and they are being victimised and portrayed in the media as enemies of the environment. Orchardists are, in fact, feeding flying-foxes in times of natural habitat food scarcity. A reward we and the community at large could get is the release of funds for research into aversion agents, coupled with funding for research into alternative food sources for flying-foxes. Orchardists did not create the problems that face them. Orchardists are not the bad guys. We are as much affected as the flying-foxes. I believe aversion agents should be thoroughly researched. It will take a combined effort of many groups to lobby Government for this to be realised.