List of Ramsar sites in Australia

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This is a list of wetlands in Australia that are designated by the Ramsar Convention as sites of international importance. Under the convention, the wetlands are considered as being of significant value not only for the Australian community, but for humanity as a whole.


The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands came into force for Australia on 21 December 1975. As of 28 February 2018, Australia has 66 sites designated as Wetlands of International Importance, with a total area of 8,342,175 hectares (20,613,960 acres). [1] [2] [3]

Management of Ramsar wetlands in the Australian jurisdiction

The management of Ramsar sites listed within Australia is controlled at national level by the Australian government via the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 and its accompanying regulations, the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Regulations 2000. [4] [5]

The act, as of 2015, lists the principles required for meeting treaty obligations in respect to "wetlands of international importance" including "environmental approvals" (i.e. sections 16-17B), the prerequisites for the making of both "declarations" and "bilateral agreements" (i.e. sections 34C and 37F, and 52 respectively), the approval process (i.e. section 138), "strategic assessments" (i.e. section 134J), and the management approach (i.e. sections 325 to 336 inclusive). [4]

The applicable regulation (i.e. regulation 10.02) lists three requirements as of 2015. Firstly, a set of general principles for management is described including the need for "public consultation," the involvement of parties with an interest and/or who may be affected by the management of wetland, as well as allowing for "continuing community and technical input." Secondly, the requirements for the management plan to be prepared for each listed wetland are described. Thirdly, the requirements for the "environmental impact assessment and approval" are described for parties wishing to undertake activities that are likely to have "a significant impact on the ecological character of a Ramsar wetland." [5] [6]

Australian Capital Territory

The following wetlands are located in the Australian Capital Territory: [1]

Ramsar wetlands of the Australian Capital Territory
NameLocationCoordinatesAreaDesignatedDesignation No.Description [2] Image
Ginini Flats Subalpine Bog Complex Namadgi National Park 35°31′S148°46′E / 35.517°S 148.767°E / -35.517; 148.767 (Ginini Flats) 125 ha (309 acres)11 March 1996RS793

New South Wales

The following wetlands are located in New South Wales: [1]

Ramsar wetlands of New South Wales
NameLocationCoordinatesAreaDesignatedDesignation No.Description [2] Image
Blue Lake Kosciuszko National Park 36°24′S148°19′E / 36.400°S 148.317°E / -36.400; 148.317 (Blue Lake) 320 hectares (790 acres)17 March 1996RS800 Blue Lake, Snowy Mountains - Lake - 3.jpg
Fivebough and Tuckerbil Swamps Riverina 34°30′S146°23′E / 34.500°S 146.383°E / -34.500; 146.383 (Fivebough and Tuckerbil) 689 hectares (1,700 acres)21 October 2002RS1224 Brolga.jpg
Gwydir Wetlands North West Slopes 34°30′S146°23′E / 34.500°S 146.383°E / -34.500; 146.383 (Gwydir) 823 hectares (2,030 acres)14 June 1999RS993 Nankeen Night Heron Fremantle Harbour.jpg
Hunter Estuary Wetlands Newcastle 32°52′S151°43′E / 32.867°S 151.717°E / -32.867; 151.717 (Hunter Estuary) 2,971 hectares (7,340 acres)21 February 1984RS287 Latham's Snipe.jpg
Little Llangothlin Lagoon Northern Tablelands 30°05′S151°47′E / 30.083°S 151.783°E / -30.083; 151.783 (Little Llangothlin Lagoon) 258 hectares (640 acres)17 March 1996RS798
Lake Pinaroo Sturt National Park, Far West 29°06′S141°13′E / 29.100°S 141.217°E / -29.100; 141.217 (Lake Pinaroo) 800 hectares (2,000 acres)17 March 1996RS799 Waterhole Fort Grey.JPG
Macquarie Marshes North West Slopes 30°45′S147°44′E / 30.750°S 147.733°E / -30.750; 147.733 (Macquarie Marshes) 18,726 hectares (46,270 acres)1 August 1986RS337 Macquarie Marshes healthy July 2008.jpg
Myall Lakes Mid North Coast 32°30′S152°17′E / 32.500°S 152.283°E / -32.500; 152.283 (Myall Lakes) 44,612 hectares (110,240 acres)14 June 1999RS994 Myall lakes.JPG
Narran Wetlands North West Slopes 29°43′S147°26′E / 29.717°S 147.433°E / -29.717; 147.433 (Narran Lake) 5,530 hectares (13,700 acres)14 June 1999RS995 Black-fronted Dotterel.jpg
Central Murray Forests Riverina 35°39′S144°39′E / 35.650°S 144.650°E / -35.650; 144.650 (Central Murray Forests) 84,028 hectares (207,640 acres)20 May 2003RS1291
Paroo River Wetlands Far West 30°20′S143°51′E / 30.333°S 143.850°E / -30.333; 143.850 (Paroo River) 138,304 hectares (341,760 acres)13 September 2007RS1716 Paroo River Wanaaring-2001-07-01.jpg
Towra Point Nature Reserve Sutherland Shire, Sydney 34°00′S151°10′E / 34.000°S 151.167°E / -34.000; 151.167 (Towra Point) 386 hectares (950 acres)21 February 1984RS286 TowraPoint.JPG

Northern Territory

The following wetlands are located in the Northern Territory: [1]

Ramsar wetlands of the Northern Territory
NameLocationCoordinatesAreaDesignatedDesignation No.Description [2] Image
Cobourg Peninsula Garig Gunak Barlu National Park 11°15′S132°15′E / 11.250°S 132.250°E / -11.250; 132.250 (Cobourg Peninsula) 220,700 hectares (545,000 acres)8 May 1974RS1 Coburg l5 2006211.jpg
Kakadu National Park (Stage 1) Alligator Rivers,
Kakadu National Park
12°40′S132°45′E / 12.667°S 132.750°E / -12.667; 132.750 (Kakadu 1) 683,000 hectares (1,690,000 acres)12 June 1980RS204 Kakadu 2411.jpg
Kakadu National Park (Stage 2) 12°30′S132°30′E / 12.500°S 132.500°E / -12.500; 132.500 (Kakadu 2) 692,940 hectares (1,712,300 acres)15 September 1989RS441


The following wetlands are located in Queensland: [1]

Ramsar wetlands of Queensland
NameLocationCoordinatesAreaDesignatedDesignation No.Description [2] Image
Bowling Green Bay North Queensland 19°27′S147°15′E / 19.450°S 147.250°E / -19.450; 147.250 (Bowling Green Bay) 35,500 hectares (88,000 acres)22 October 1993RS632
Currawinya Lakes South West Queensland 28°45′S144°19′E / 28.750°S 144.317°E / -28.750; 144.317 (Currawinya Lakes) 151,300 hectares (374,000 acres)11 March 1996RS791 Mulga Parrot Currawinya.JPG
Great Sandy Strait Wide Bay–Burnett 25°28′S152°54′E / 25.467°S 152.900°E / -25.467; 152.900 (Great Sandy Strait) 93,160 hectares (230,200 acres)14 June 1999RS992 ISS036-E-028444.jpg
Moreton Bay South East Queensland 27°20′S153°10′E / 27.333°S 153.167°E / -27.333; 153.167 (Moreton Bay) 113,314 hectares (280,000 acres)22 October 1993RS631 Bar-Tail Godwits G.J. Walter Park c.JPG
Shoalwater and Corio Bays Central Queensland 22°40′S150°17′E / 22.667°S 150.283°E / -22.667; 150.283 (Shoalwater Bay) 239,100 hectares (591,000 acres)11 March 1996RS792 Freshwater Bay DN-SD-01-04615.jpg

South Australia

The following wetlands are located in South Australia: [1]

Ramsar wetlands of South Australia
NameLocationCoordinatesAreaDesignatedDesignation No.Description [2] Image
Banrock Station Wetland Complex Riverland 34°11′S140°20′E / 34.183°S 140.333°E / -34.183; 140.333 (Banrock Station Wetland Complex) 1,375 hectares (3,400 acres)21 October 2002RS1221 Polytelis anthopeplus -Wyperfeld National Park -Australia-8.jpg
Bool and Hacks Lagoons Limestone Coast 37°08′S140°41′E / 37.133°S 140.683°E / -37.133; 140.683 (Bool and Hacks Lagoons) 3,200 hectares (7,900 acres)1 November 1985RS322 Bool Lagoon 2.jpg
Coongie Lakes Lake Eyre Basin 27°27′S140°00′E / 27.450°S 140.000°E / -27.450; 140.000 (Coongie Lakes) 1,980,000 hectares (4,900,000 acres)1 June 1987RS376 AustralianPelicansMcArthurRiverMouth.jpg
Coorong and Lakes Alexandrina and Albert Wetland Lake Alexandrina 35°56′S139°18′E / 35.933°S 139.300°E / -35.933; 139.300 (The Coorong and Lakes Alexandrina and Albert Wetland) 140,500 hectares (347,000 acres)1 November 1985RS321 Banded Stilts at the Coorong.JPG
Piccaninnie Ponds Karst Wetlands Limestone Coast 38°3′3″S140°56′11″E / 38.05083°S 140.93639°E / -38.05083; 140.93639 (Piccaninnie Ponds Karst Wetlands) 862 hectares (2,130 acres) [7] 21 December 2012RS2136
Riverland Ramsar site [8] [9] Riverland 34°02′S140°51′E / 34.033°S 140.850°E / -34.033; 140.850 (Riverland) 30,600 hectares (76,000 acres)23 September 1987RS377


The following wetlands are located in Tasmania: [1]

Ramsar wetlands of Tasmania
NameLocationCoordinatesAreaDesignatedDesignation No.Description [2] Image
Apsley Marshes Freycinet Peninsula 41°56′S148°12′E / 41.933°S 148.200°E / -41.933; 148.200 (Apsley Marshes) 880 hectares (2,200 acres)16 November 1982RS255
Cape Barren Island, east coast lagoons Furneaux Group 40°22′S148°23′E / 40.367°S 148.383°E / -40.367; 148.383 (Cape Barren Island) 4,370 hectares (10,800 acres)16 November 1982RS255 Cape barren island.jpg
Interlaken Lakeside Reserve Central Highlands 42°09′S147°10′E / 42.150°S 147.167°E / -42.150; 147.167 (Interlaken Lakeside) 520 hectares (1,300 acres)16 November 1982RS259
Jocks Lagoon St Helens 41°21′S148°18′E / 41.350°S 148.300°E / -41.350; 148.300 (Jocks Lagoon) 18 hectares (44 acres)16 November 1982RS258
Lavinia King Island 39°45′S144°05′E / 39.750°S 144.083°E / -39.750; 144.083 (Lavinia) 7,020 hectares (17,300 acres)16 November 1982RS253
Little Waterhouse Lake North East 40°52′S147°37′E / 40.867°S 147.617°E / -40.867; 147.617 (Little Waterhouse Lake) 57 hectares (140 acres)16 November 1982RS260 Tomahawk aerial.jpg
Logan Lagoon Flinders Island,
Furneaux Group
40°10′S148°17′E / 40.167°S 148.283°E / -40.167; 148.283 (Logan Lagoon) 2,320 hectares (5,700 acres)16 November 1982RS252
Lower Ringarooma River North East 40°54′S147°56′E / 40.900°S 147.933°E / -40.900; 147.933 (Lower Ringarooma River) 4,160 hectares (10,300 acres)16 November 1982RS257 Boobyalla aerial.jpg
Moulting Lagoon Nature Reserve Freycinet Peninsula 42°05′S148°10′E / 42.083°S 148.167°E / -42.083; 148.167 (Moulting Lagoon) 4,580 hectares (11,300 acres)16 November 1982RS251
Pittwater-Orielton Lagoon Southern Tasmania 42°48′S147°30′E / 42.800°S 147.500°E / -42.800; 147.500 (Pittwater-Orielton Lagoon) 3,175 hectares (7,850 acres)16 November 1982RS254


The following wetlands are located in Victoria: [1]

Ramsar wetlands of Victoria
NameLocationCoordinatesAreaDesignatedDesignation No.Description [2] Image
Barmah Forest Goulburn Valley, Hume 35°55′S145°08′E / 35.917°S 145.133°E / -35.917; 145.133 (Barmah Forest) 28,515 hectares (70,460 acres)15 December 1982RS262
Corner Inlet South Gippsland 38°45′S146°32′E / 38.750°S 146.533°E / -38.750; 146.533 (Corner Inlet) 67,186 hectares (166,020 acres)15 December 1982RS261
Glenelg Estuary and Discovery Bay Ramsar Site Glenelg Shire 38°05′S141°07′E / 38.083°S 141.117°E / -38.083; 141.117 (Glenelg Estuary and Discovery Bay Ramsar Site) 22,289 hectares (55,080 acres)28 February 2018RS2344 [3]
Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands Port Phillip 38°04′S145°07′E / 38.067°S 145.117°E / -38.067; 145.117 (Edithvale-Seaford) 261 hectares (640 acres)29 August 2001RS1096 Edithvale Seaford Wetlands Discovery Centre.JPG
Gippsland Lakes East Gippsland 38°00′S147°36′E / 38.000°S 147.600°E / -38.000; 147.600 (Gippsland Lakes) 60,015 hectares (148,300 acres)15 December 1982RS269

Seal at Lakes Entrance.JPG

Gunbower Forest 35°49′S144°19′E / 35.817°S 144.317°E / -35.817; 144.317 (Gunbower Forest) 19,931 hectares (49,250 acres)15 December 1982RS263
Hattah-Kulkyne Lakes Murray Mallee 34°41′S142°26′E / 34.683°S 142.433°E / -34.683; 142.433 (Hattah-Kulkyne Lakes) 955 hectares (2,360 acres)15 December 1982RS264 Hattah Lake.JPG
Kerang Wetlands Murray Mallee 35°40′S143°56′E / 35.667°S 143.933°E / -35.667; 143.933 (Kerang) 9,419 hectares (23,270 acres)15 December 1982RS265
Lake Albacutya Wimmera 35°46′S141°58′E / 35.767°S 141.967°E / -35.767; 141.967 (Lake Albacutya) 5,731 hectares (14,160 acres)15 December 1982RS270
Port Phillip Bay and Bellarine Peninsula Port Phillip,
Bellarine Peninsula
38°04′S144°36′E / 38.067°S 144.600°E / -38.067; 144.600 (Port Phillip and Bellarine) 22,897 hectares (56,580 acres)15 December 1982RS266
Western District Lakes Western District 38°10′S143°31′E / 38.167°S 143.517°E / -38.167; 143.517 (Western District Lakes) 32,898 hectares (81,290 acres)15 December 1982RS268
Western Port Bay Western Port 38°22′S145°17′E / 38.367°S 145.283°E / -38.367; 145.283 (Western Port) 59,297 hectares (146,530 acres)15 December 1982RS267

Western Australia

The following wetlands are located in Western Australia: [1]

Ramsar wetlands of Western Australia
NameLocationCoordinatesAreaDesignatedDesignation No.Description [2] Image
Becher Point Wetlands Swan Coastal Plain 32°23′S115°44′E / 32.383°S 115.733°E / -32.383; 115.733 (Becher Point) 677 hectares (1,670 acres)5 January 2001RS1048
Eighty Mile Beach Kimberley 19°31′S120°40′E / 19.517°S 120.667°E / -19.517; 120.667 (Eighty Mile Beach) 125,000 hectares (310,000 acres)7 June 1990RS480 Eighty Mile Beach, Western Australia.jpg
Forrestdale and Thomsons Lakes Swan Coastal Plain 32°09′S115°52′E / 32.150°S 115.867°E / -32.150; 115.867 (Forrestdale and Thomsons) 754 hectares (1,860 acres)7 June 1990RS481 Thomsons Lake panorama, January 2021.jpg
Lake Gore Goldfields-Esperance 33°47′S121°29′E / 33.783°S 121.483°E / -33.783; 121.483 (Lake Gore) 4,017 hectares (9,930 acres)5 January 2001RS1049
Lake Warden System Goldfields-Esperance 33°48′S121°56′E / 33.800°S 121.933°E / -33.800; 121.933 (Lake Warden) 2,300 hectares (5,700 acres)7 June 1990RS485 Banded stilts 2 Governors Lake Rotto email.jpg
Lakes Argyle and Kununurra Kimberley 16°19′S128°44′E / 16.317°S 128.733°E / -16.317; 128.733 (Lakes Argyle and Kununurra) 150,000 hectares (370,000 acres)7 June 1990RS478 Lake argyle.jpg
Muir-Byenup System South West 34°29′S116°43′E / 34.483°S 116.717°E / -34.483; 116.717 (Lake Muir) 10,631 hectares (26,270 acres)5 January 2001RS1050 Lakemuir.JPG
Ord River Floodplain Kimberley 15°15′S128°22′E / 15.250°S 128.367°E / -15.250; 128.367 (Ord River) 141,453 hectares (349,540 acres)7 June 1990RS477 Numenius minutus 1.jpg
Peel-Yalgorup System Swan Coastal Plain 32°49′S115°42′E / 32.817°S 115.700°E / -32.817; 115.700 (Peel-Yalgorup) 26,530 hectares (65,600 acres)7 June 1990RS482 Coodanup Foreshore Reserve, October 2020 08.jpg
Roebuck Bay Kimberley 18°07′S122°16′E / 18.117°S 122.267°E / -18.117; 122.267 (Roebuck Bay) 55,000 hectares (140,000 acres)7 June 1990RS479 Waders in flight Roebuck Bay.jpg
Toolibin Lake Wheatbelt 32°55′S117°36′E / 32.917°S 117.600°E / -32.917; 117.600 (Toolibin Lake) 493 hectares (1,220 acres)7 June 1990RS483
Vasse-Wonnerup System South West 33°37′S115°25′E / 33.617°S 115.417°E / -33.617; 115.417 (Vasse-Wonnerup) 1,115 hectares (2,760 acres)7 June 1990RS484 BSN Wetlands20A.jpg

External territories

The following wetlands are located in the External territories: [1]

Ramsar wetlands of the External territories
NameLocationCoordinatesAreaDesignatedDesignation No.Description [2] Image
Ashmore Reef National Nature Reserve Ashmore and Cartier Islands 12°15′S123°02′E / 12.250°S 123.033°E / -12.250; 123.033 (Ashmore and Cartier Islands) 58,300 hectares (144,000 acres)21 October 2002RS1220
Coral Sea Reserves (Coringa-Herald and Lihou Reef and Cays) Coral Sea Islands Territory 17°04′S150°39′E / 17.067°S 150.650°E / -17.067; 150.650 (Coral Sea) 1,729,200 hectares (4,273,000 acres)21 October 2002RS1222
The Dales Christmas Island 10°28′S105°33′E / 10.467°S 105.550°E / -10.467; 105.550 (The Dales) 57 hectares (140 acres)21 October 2002RS1225
Elizabeth and Middleton Reefs Marine National Nature Reserve Coral Sea Islands Territory 29°41′S159°06′E / 29.683°S 159.100°E / -29.683; 159.100 (Elizabeth and Middleton Reefs) 188,000 hectares (460,000 acres)21 October 2002RS1223 Elizabeth Reef.jpg
Hosnies Spring Christmas Island 10°28′S105°41′E / 10.467°S 105.683°E / -10.467; 105.683 (Hosnies Spring) 1 hectare (2.5 acres)11 December 1990RS512
Pulu Keeling National Park Cocos (Keeling) Islands 11°50′S96°49′E / 11.833°S 96.817°E / -11.833; 96.817 (Pulu Keeling) 122 hectares (300 acres)17 March 1996RS797 North Keeling Island 01.JPG

See also

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  4. 1 2 "Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999". Australasian Legal Information Institute . Retrieved 12 October 2015.
  5. 1 2 "Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Regulations 2000 - Reg 10.02". Australasian Legal Information Institute . Retrieved 11 October 2015.
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  8. "Riverland Ramsar site". Department for Environment and Water, Government of South Australia . 2020. Retrieved 20 June 2021.
  9. "New partnership to restore Riverland Ramsar site (Commonwealth Environmental Water Office media release)". Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, Australia. 2 December 2020. Retrieved 20 June 2021.