Aroona Sanctuary, Leigh Creek

Where is it?: Aroona Sanctuary is an irregular crescent shaped block of land surrounding Leigh Creek to the southeast, west and northwest including Aroona Dam. The main Port Augusta – Copley road bisects the area.

Owner: Crown Land managed by National Parks and Wildlife Service South Australia (NPWSSA).

Property summary: Total area c. 2948 hectares. Out of Hundreds (Copley) Part Sections 373, 1290 and Part Piece 106 (previously part Allotment 641).

Landscape SA Management Region: South Australian Arid Lands

History: Aroona Dam was constructed between 1952 and 1957 to provide water supplies for the township of Leigh Creek and the coalfields1. Part Sections 373, 1290 and Part Allotment 641 were proclaimed the Aroona Sanctuary on 26 October 19952. Following the closure of the Leigh Creek coal mine management of the area passed to NPWSSA.

Habitat: Main habitats within the sanctuary include:
  – Red Mallee (Eucalyptus socialis) with Bullock Bush (Alectryon oleifolius)
  – Black Oak (Casuarina pauper) lower open shrubland over Oblique-spined Bindyi (Sclerolaena obliquicuspis) and Erect Mallee Bluebush
    (Maireana pentatropis)
  – River Red Gum ((E. camaldulensis) woodland with Inland Paperbark (Melaleuca glomerata)
  – Elegant Wattle (Acacia Victoria) over Blackbush (Maireana pyramidata)
  – Bladder Saltbush (Atriplex vesicaria, Pearl Bluebush (M. sedifolia) and Blackbush shrubland

Total Species Recorded to Date: 103 (non-passerines 56, passerines 47).

Common Species: Musk Duck, Hoary-headed Grebe, White-plumed Honeyeater, Australian Magpie, Striated Pardalote, Chestnut-rumped Thornbill

Less Common Species: Rainbow Bee-eater,Peaceful Dove, Hooded Robin, Red-capped Robin, Southern Whiteface

1 Department of Environment and Natural Resources (1995). Flinders Ranges Heritage Survey. Volume 6. Towns. pp. 6-69 – 6-71.

2 Government of South Australia (1995). National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972. Declaration of Aroona Sanctuary. The South Australian Government Gazette, No. 118, 26 October 1995. p. 1195.

Updated: 9/01/2022

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