26 September 2023

Fire-closed Conservation Park reopens

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More than a full year after it closed, Scott Creek Conservation Park has finally reopened to the public.

Executive Director of the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS), Mike Williams said it was very pleasing to see the park reopen since more than two thirds of it had been burnt in January 2021’s Cherry Gardens fire.

“Following the fire, the park was closed for public safety with recovery actions beginning soon afterwards,” Mr Williams said.

“There’s been a number of people who have helped us get to this stage and I’d like to thank them all for their help, in particular the Friends of Scott Creek Conservation Park, who have worked closely together with NPWS staff to undertake recovery works in the reserve,” he said.

He said the park, a 45-minute drive from the Adelaide CBD, was a biodiversity hotspot, with its heath vegetation providing core habitat for the nationally endangered southern brown bandicoot (pictured) and chestnut-rumped heathwren, nationally vulnerable bassian thrush, 10 species of nationally-listed plants and many other threatened flora and fauna.

“While the park is now reopen there’s still a lot of work which continues in helping vulnerable and threatened species of animals and plants within the park to recover and recolonise the fire scar,” he said.

The Executive Director said as part of this recovery process, a new monitoring program was launched last year to monitor threatened species such as the southern brown bandicoot, the chestnut-rumped heathwren and bassian thrush.

“Weed management also remains a key focus on-park, with extensive areas of the park being restored to excellent condition,” he said.

“However weed seed banks remain in the soil and will have been triggered by the fire, so this will remain an ongoing focus,” Mr Williams said.

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