Para Wirra Conservation Park

Where is it?: This park is situated c. 12 km E of Elizabeth. It is bounded on the east by Bassnet Road, on the north-east by Para Wirra Road, Frank Barker Road in the south and private land on the west. The main entrance is off Humbug Scrub Road. A vehicle entrance fee applies.

Owner: Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources.

Property summary: Total area 1512 hectares. Hundred of Barossa – Sections 178-185, 199, 216, 217, 237, 238, 299, 311, 342 and Allotment 1; Hundred of Para Wirra – Sections 275, 277-280, 396, 423, 428, 429 and Allotments 2-6

Natural Resources Management Region: Natural Resources Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges Region

History: Section 311 and 423 were gazetted as Para Wirra National Park on 21 June 1962. On 27 April 1972 with the addition of other areas it was re-proclaimed as a Recreation Park. On the 19 May 2016 the park was re-proclaimed as a Conservation Park.  

Habitat: There are a variety of habitats within the park. The woodland formation is composed of River Red Gum (Eucalyptus camaldulensis) along the major water courses, with mixtures of South Australian Blue Gum (E. leucoxylon) and Pink Gum (E. fasciculosa) at the heads of gullies. The woodland understorey consists of scattered bushes of Golden Wattle (Acacia pycnantha), Sticky Hop-bush (Dodonaea viscosa) and Christmas-ush (Bursaria spinosa).

Open woodland formation covers large areas of the central section of the park which had been cleared for grazing or developed for recreation and contain the same eucalypt species plus the addition of Long-leaf Box (E. goniocalyx). Open forest formation covers the largest area with South Australian Blue Gum, Pink Gum and Long-leaf Box. Small patches and individual specimens of Southern Cypress-pine (Callitris preissii) occurs within both woodland and forest formations.

A very small area of closed scrub, dominated by tall and spreading plants of Slaty Sheoak (Allocasuarina muelleriana) occurs in the central-eastern section and also the northern sector of the park. There is also closed scrub dominated by Peppermint Gum (E. odorata) with a sparse understorey only of Round-leaved Wattle (Acacia acinacea) and Smooth Correa (Correa glabra var. schlechtendalii).

There are several small patches of open scrub in the park containing Narrow-leaved Red Mallee (E. leptophylla) and Red Mallee (E. socialis). Along the north-eastern boundary of the park there is open scrub and also closed heath formations dominated by Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata).

More information: DEWNR   Friends of Para Wirra

Total Species Recorded to Date: 138 (non-passerines 71, passerines 67)

Common Species: Laughing Kookaburra, Brown Treecreeper, Superb Fairywren, Eastern Spinebill, Crescent Honeyeater, Australian Magpie, Black-winged Currawong, White-winged Chough, Grey Shrikethrush 

Less Common Species: Rainbow Lorikeet, Southern Whiteface, Weebill, Dusky Woodswallow, Diamond Firetail

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