Mantung Conservation Park protected now and for the future

Posted 25 November 2014.

The newly protected Murraylands Mantung Conservation Park is approximately 45 kilometres west of Loxton and covers about 1,695 hectares. It is part of an extensive environment of native vegetation containing the largest intact remnants of deep sand habitat in the Northern Murray Mallee, which supports numerous rare plant species including the rasp daisy bush.

Natural Resources South Australian Murray-Darling Basin District Manager, Mallee and Coorong, Paul Gillen said while the vegetation is in reasonable condition now, it is starting to show signs of decline.

“Proclaiming the Mantung area as a Conservation Park complements a large network of adjoining Vegetation Heritage Agreements in the area which are well-managed by local farmers and the Mantung-Maggea Land Management Group (MMLMG) with support from the Murray Mallee Local Action Planning (MMLAP) group and Natural Resources SA Murray-Darling Basin (SAMDB).

“The local community has really taken Mantung under its wing, taking part in extensive native habitat restoration work in recent years.

“This work represents part of one of the most significant habitat restoration programs conducted in South Australia,” Mr Gillen said.

The newly protected Mantung Conservation Park, links the surrounding Heritage Agreements with Bakara Conservation Park, helping to conserve this landscape.

“These two parks are important for the conservation of malleefowl, southern scrub-robin, shy heathwren, inland thornbill, white-browed babbler and purple-gaped honeyeater, which are dependent upon mallee woodland and patchily dense shrubby understorey,” Mr Gillen said.

“In recent years, the MMLMG and MMLAP and Natural Resources SAMDB have undertaken hundreds of hectares of revegetation and restoration works in the deep sand habitats of the newly proclaimed park.

“The revegetation has helped address the vegetation decline, much of which has taken place within the boundaries of the new Mantung Conservation Park, and involved many innovative restoration techniques,” Mr Gillen said.

The restoration works used scientific trials, involving grazing reduction and the use of fire in a range of habitats.

Half of the experimental plots for the scientific trial are located in Mantung Conservation Park.

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