Protected areas of South Australia consists of protected areas located within South Australia and its immediate onshore waters and which are managed by South Australian Government agencies. As of March 2018, South Australia contains 359 separate protected areas declared under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972, the Crown Land Management Act 2009 and the Wilderness Protection Act 1992 which have a total land area of 211,387.48 km2 (81,617.16 sq mi) or 21.5% of the state's area.
The jurisdiction for legislation of protected areas within South Australia and the immediate onshore waters known officially as ‘the coastal waters and waters within the limits of South Australia' belongs to the South Australian government.The major piece of legislation concerned with the creation and the subsequent management of protected areas is the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972. Protected areas created by this Act form the majority of South Australia’s contribution to the National Reserve System.
Other state legislation that may create protected areas include the following: Forestry Act 1950, Wilderness Protection Act 1992, Historic Shipwrecks Act 1981, River Murray Act 2003, Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary Act 2005, Fisheries Management Act 2007, Marine Parks Act 2007, Crown Land Management Act 2009, Arkaroola Protection Act 2012 and Native Vegetation Act 1991.
While the Australian Government does not have the power under the Australian constitution to legislate for protected areas within South Australia, its treaty obligations and its constitutional responsibilities do permit it to develop policy for protected areas and to enter into agreements concerning protected areas. Examples include nomination of sites under the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (also known as the Ramsar Convention) and establishment of agreements for Indigenous Protected Areas.[ citation needed ]
The National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972 (also known as the ‘National Parks Act’) is the principal legislation in South Australia in respect to the establishment and management of protected areas. The act uses the term ‘reserve’ in lieu of the term ‘protected area’ while the agency which administers the act generally uses the term 'park'.It is concerned with the establishment and management of reserves, establishment of sanctuaries, conservation of native plants and animals, declaration of protected animals, the management of protected animals in respect to taking, keeping, farming and harvesting, and the control of hunting.
The act is administered by the Department for Environment and Water (DEW).
As of February 2014, reserves declared under this act totalled 320 with a total area of 19,226,432 ha (47,509,550 acres) or 19.6% of South Australia's area. As of August 2021 [update] , there are around 360 parks across South Australia subject to the act and National Parks Regulations.
The following types of reserves are listed within the Act: national parks, conservation parks, game reserves, recreation parks and regional reserves.
National parks are "areas considered to be of national significance due to wildlife, natural features of the land, or Aboriginal or European heritage".As of May 2020, updated December 2021, the following national parks have been declared:
Conservation parks are "areas protected for the purpose of conserving wildlife or the natural or historic features of the land".As of March 2018, updated December 2021 (after five national parks had been created, incorporating several former conservation parks), the following conservation parks have been declared:
Former conservation parks include Cape Hart, Cape Torrens, Cleland, Ediacara, Eurilla, Investigator Group, Isles of St Francis, Mount Rescue, Mount Shaugh, Munga-Thirri–Simpson Desert Conservation Park, Naracoorte Caves, Port Gawler and Scorpion Springs, Spaniards Gully, Telowie Gorge, Western River, and Wirrabara Range.
Game reserves are "areas set aside for conservation of wildlife and the management of game for seasonal hunting".As of March 2018, the following game reserves have been declared:
Former game reserves include Coorong and Katarapko.
Recreation parks are 'areas managed for public recreation and enjoyment in a natural setting.'As of March 2018, the following recreation parks have been declared:
Regional reserves are "areas proclaimed for the purpose of conserving wildlife or natural or historical features while allowing responsible use of the area's natural resources".As of March 2018, the following regional reserves had been declared(since November 2021 excluding Lake Frome and Munga-Thirri–Simpson Desert, since they were converted into national parks):
Conservation reserves are a parcels of 'land set aside for conservation of natural and cultural features under the Crown Land Management Act 2009.'As of March 2018, the following conservation reserves have been declared:
As of March 2018, reserves declared under the Crown Land Management Act 2009 totalled 15 with a total area of 19,471 ha (48,110 acres) or less than 0.1% of South Australia’s area.
The Forestry Act 1950 allows for the declaration of forest reserves for ‘purposes relating to the conservation, development and management of land supporting native flora and fauna…’ Native forest reserves are administered by the South Australian Forestry Corporation (trading as ForestrySA) which is a wholly owned state government business.As of March 2014, the following native forest reserves which are located in the Southern Flinders Ranges, the Mount Lofty Ranges and the Limestone Coast have been declared:
The Wilderness Protection Act 1992 was established in 1992 to provide for ‘the protection of wilderness and the restoration of land to its condition before European colonisation’.The day-to-day administration of the act is carried out by DEW. As of March 2018, the following areas have been declared:
As of March 2018, reserves declared under the Wilderness Protection Act 1992 totalled 14 with a total area of 1,843,454 ha (4,555,270 acres) or 1.9% of South Australia’s area.
The Historic Shipwrecks Act 1981 which is administered by DEW allows for the creation of protected zones over land and water around historic shipwrecks. The following protected zones have been declared:
The River Murray Act 2003 which is administered by DEW has provision for ‘the protection and enhancement of the River Murray and related areas and ecosystems’.
As of September 2010, the following protection areas have been designated:
The following areas have been declared under the Fisheries Management Act 2007 (SA). Aquatic reserves which are managed by the Department of Primary Industries & Regions (PIRSA), were 'established to protect the habitat, ecosystems and communities of the rich variety of underwater organisms found in the marine and estuarine waters of South Australia'. Aquatic reserves are considered to be IUCN Category II protected areas.
Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary (ADS) is a sanctuary area intended to protect the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) population residing in the Port Adelaide River estuary and Barker Inlet as well as protecting and enhancing the Port Adelaide River estuary and Barker Inlet. The sanctuary was declared under the Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary Act 2005 and is managed by DEW.
Marine parks are marine protected areas located within the immediate onshore waters of SA set aside under the Marine Parks Act 2007 (SA) 'to preserve the biological diversity of the state's coastal, estuarine and marine environments while allowing ecologically sustainable use of the area's natural resources.'As of December 2013, the following marine parks have been declared:
The Arkaroola Protection Act 2012 which commenced operation on 26 April 2012 was created to ‘establish the Arkaroola Protection Area; to provide for the proper management and care of the area; and to prohibit mining activities in the area’. The protection area which is located 600 km (370 mi) north of Adelaide includes the Arkaroola Pastoral Lease and the Mawson Plateau part of the Mount Freeling Pastoral Lease. The former lease which has not been stocked for over 30 years is operated for the purpose of conservation and tourism under the name, Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary. The protection area is reported as satisfying the definition of a "category II National Park".
A native vegetation heritage agreements, usually known as a heritage agreement, is a legally binding agreement between a landowner and the Minister for Environment, Sustainability and Conservation where the landowner agrees to protect native vegetation in perpetuity. In return, the Minister may agree to reduce statutory fees such as local government rates or offer assistance in term of funding of works such as fencing or provision of expert advice to ‘protecting and improving the conservation value of the heritage agreement area’. 634,242 hectares (1,567,250 acres) of land within SA or 0.64% of the area of SA have been entered into between landowners and the minister. A notable example is the Gluepot Reserve.The enabling legislation is the Native Vegetation Act 1991. Land covered by heritage agreements is considered to meet IUCN Category III. As of February 2014, 1537 agreements in respect to
As of March 2015, Naracoorte Caves National Park is the sole World Heritage Site located in South Australia. It was co-listed under the name “Australian Fossil Mammal Sites (Riversleigh / Naracoorte)” with Riversleigh located in Queensland during 1994 in recognition of the fossil assemblages present at both sites which are considered to be a “superb illustration of the key stages of evolution of Australia’s unique fauna”.
As a contracting party to the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (known as the Ramsar Convention), Australia is encouraged ‘to nominate sites containing representative, rare or unique wetlands, or that are important for conserving biological diversity, to the List of Wetlands of International Importance’.As of March 2014, the Australian Government has nominated the following Ramsar sites within South Australia:
An Indigenous Protected Area (IPA) is a voluntary agreement between owners of indigenous owned land (known as traditional owners) and the Australian government which is intended to ‘promote biodiversity and cultural resource conservation on indigenous owned land’.As of March 2014, there are six IPAs in existence within South Australia:
Two biosphere reserves belonging to the UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve program are located within South Australia - the Mamungari Conservation Park and the Riverland Biosphere Reserve.
The Mamungari Conservation Park in western South Australia which was formerly known as the Unnamed Conservation Park is co-managed by its traditional owners and DEW.
The Riverland Biosphere Reserve is located in the Riverland near Renmark. Two of its components are Calperum and Taylorville Stations which were respectively purchased by the Chicago Zoological Society in 1993 and the Australian Landscape Trust in 2000 with the ownership being deeded to the Director of National Parks. Both properties are managed by the Australian Landscape Trust.
Protected areas of Australia include Commonwealth and off-shore protected areas managed by the Australian government, as well as protected areas within each of the six states of Australia and two self-governing territories, the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory, which are managed by the eight state and territory governments.
Protected areas of New Zealand receive protection to preserve their environmental, historical or cultural value. The method and aims of protection vary according to the importance of the resource and whether it has public or private status.
Cape Gantheaume Conservation Park, formerly the Cape Gantheaume National Park, is a protected area in the Australian state of South Australia located on the south coast of Kangaroo Island. Attractions include Murray Lagoon and D'Estrees Bay. It also includes Pelorus Islet located about 7 kilometres southeast of Cape Gantheaume.
Seal Bay Conservation Park is a protected area located on the south coast of Kangaroo Island in the Australian state of South Australia. It is the home of the third largest Australian sea lion colony in Australia.
Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service is the government body responsible for protected areas of Tasmania on public land, such as national parks, historic sites and regional reserves. Historically it has also had responsibility for managing wildlife, including game.
Danggali Conservation Park is a protected area located about 65 kilometres north of Renmark in South Australia. The conservation park was proclaimed under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972 in 1976. In 2009, a portion of the conservation park was excised to create the Danggali Wilderness Protection Area. The conservation park is classified as an IUCN Category Ia protected area.
Nuyts Archipelago Conservation Park is a protected area in the Australian state of South Australia located on Eyre Island and St Peter Island in the Nuyts Archipelago located off the west coast of Eyre Peninsula about 10 kilometres south and 25 kilometres south-east respectively of Ceduna.
Sir Joseph Banks Group Conservation Park is a protected area in the Australian state of South Australia located on the Sir Joseph Banks Group in Spencer Gulf about 25 kilometres (16 mi) east-northeast of Port Lincoln. The conservation park of which specific islands had been previously declared as Flora and Fauna Reserves under statutes in force prior to 1972, was proclaimed in 1972 under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972. It was declared ‘primarily for the conservation of Cape Barren geese, and to protect marine mammal habitat’. As of 1996, the conservation park did not include Spilsby island which is privately owned and ‘lighthouse reserves’ on other islands while the following islands have been added post-declaration - Reevesby Island which was added in 1974 and Dangerous Reef which was added in 1989. The conservation park was subsequently extended to include the waters within 2 nautical miles (4 km) of the shoreline of all islands in the group and Dangerous Reef via a declaration under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972 for the purpose of regulating and managing great white shark berleying activities. The conservation park is classified as an IUCN Category Ia protected area.
Busby Islet Conservation Park is a protected area located on Busby Islet in Nepean Bay on the north coast of Kangaroo Island in South Australia. The conservation park is located about 2 kilometres north of the town of Kingscote and occupies an area of 17 hectares on Busby Islet. It was dedicated in 1967 for 'the conservation of wildlife habitat' replacing previous statutory protection dating back to 1909. A management philosophy for the park published in 1987 supports the need to 'ensure the conservation, in perpetuity, of the natural environment, in particular the breeding habitat for birds of the ocean and seashore'. The conservation park is reported as supporting breeding populations of Australian pelicans, black-faced and pied cormorants, pied and sooty oystercatchers, and silver and Pacific gulls, serving as a roost site for migratory waders and being a place visited by Rock parrots and little grassbirds. The conservation park was declared as a 'no entry' area in October 2014. The conservation park is classified as an IUCN Category Ia protected area.
Western River Wilderness Protection Area, formerly the Western River Conservation Park and the Western River National Park, is a protected area in the Australian state of South Australia located on the north coast of Kangaroo Island about 30 kilometres (19 mi) west of Parndana in the gazetted locality of Western River. Waterfall Creek, with its scenic Billy Goat Waterfall, are within the area.
Arkaroola Protection Area is a protected area located about 600 km (370 mi) north of the Adelaide city centre in the Australian state of South Australia. It was established in 2012 by the Arkaroola Protection Act 2012 "to provide for the proper management and care of the area; and to prohibit mining activities in the area". The protection area is reported as satisfying the definition of a "category II National Park".
Penguin Island Conservation Park is a protected area occupying Penguin Island and part of Cape Martin on the mainland in Rivoli Bay on the south east coast of South Australia about 1 kilometre south of Beachport.
Baudin Rocks Conservation Park is a protected area occupying Baudin Rocks on the south east coast of South Australia about 8.3 kilometres North-northwest of Robe. In 1965, the island was declared as a Fauna Reserve under the Fauna Conservation Act 1964 following a request from the Kingston Branch of the National Trust of South Australia to declare ‘a reserve to afford protection to the wildlife population’. The protected area status was retained following the enactment of the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972 in 1972 when it was renamed as the Baudin Rocks Conservation Park.
Nuyts Archipelago Wilderness Protection Area is a protected area in the Australian state of South Australia located in the Nuyts Archipelago off the west coast of Eyre Peninsula within 10 kilometres to 75 kilometres south-west of Ceduna.
Gambier Islands Conservation Park is a protected area associated with the Gambier Islands Group which is located in the middle of the mouth of Spencer Gulf in South Australia about 71 kilometres south east of Port Lincoln. The conservation park consists of the following islands from within the group - North Island, South West Rock and Peaked Rocks. Wedge Island is not included in the conservation park. The land which now comprises the conservation park was previously declared as Fauna Reserves in March 1967 under the Fauna Conservation Act 1964 and was re-proclaimed in 1972 under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972. The area under protection is considered significant for the following reasons: 'a group of small islands utilised by seabirds and the Australian sea lion' and the 'North Island supports a population of the southern bush rat .' The conservation park is classified as an IUCN Category Ia protected area.
Lipson Island Conservation Park is a protected area in the Australian state of South Australia associated with Lipson Island in Spencer Gulf about 12 kilometres north northeast of Lipson.
Mount Dutton Bay Conservation Park is a protected area in the Australian state of South Australia located on the west coast of Eyre Peninsula on islands located on waters in the sector between the north west to the east of the town of Coffin Bay.
Beachport Conservation Park, formerly the Beachport National Park, is a protected area located in the Limestone Coast of South Australia about 80 kilometres north-west of Mount Gambier and immediately north of the township of Beachport.
Elliot Price Conservation Park, formerly the Elliot Price Wilderness National Park, is a protected area in the Australian state of South Australia located in the gazetted locality of Lake Eyre with its southern boundary being located about 90 kilometres north west of Marree.
Nullarbor Wilderness Protection Area is a protected area in the Australian state of South Australia located about 270 kilometres west of Ceduna in the locality of Nullarbor.
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