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Wildflowers at Eurardy Photo: Ben Parkhurst
Wildflowers at Eurardy Photo: Ben Parkhurst

Eurardy

Established:

2005

Area:

30,050 ha

Location:

145km North of Geraldton

Traditional Custodians:

Nanda people

The diversity of plant species in the Southwest Botanical Province outranks Australia’s tropical rainforests, and its annual wildflower displays attract people from all over the world. 

When Bush Heritage bought Eurardy Reserve in 2005, it had an immediate impact on Western Australian conservation. Overnight, the amount of jam and york gum woodlands protected in the Geraldton Sandplain bioregion jumped from less than 1% to 22%.

The decision to buy Eurardy had many other benefits, including cementing protection for part of the Southwest Botanical Province.

One of only 34 biodiversity hotspots recognised globally, the province makes up just 0.23% of the Earth’s land surface and yet supports 12.6% of its rare and threatened flora.

York Gum on Eurardy Reserve. Photo Leanne Hales.

Eurardy Reserve itself, tucked into the northern edge of this biodiversity hotspot, protects over 500 plant species, including at least five that are nationally endangered or vulnerable. It forms a critical habitat link between Kalbarri National Park and Toolonga Nature Reserve to the north.

Land clearing and the spread of salinity have devastated much of this region, making the remaining bushland exceptionally important for species such as the nationally vulnerable Malleefowl. Eurardy is also home to the endangered Small-petalled Beyeria – presumed extinct until rediscovered in 2005.

All this is protected thanks to generous supporters.

Malleefowl. Photo Sharon Gillam.

What Eurardy Reserve protects

Animals: Red-tailed Black Cockatoo, Spinifex Hopping-mouse, Hairy-footed Dunnart, Ash-grey mouse.

Plants: Northern Dwarf Spider-orchid, Feather-flowers, Kalbarri Spider-orchid, Beard’s mallee, Wreath flower.

Vegetation communities: York gum woodland, Scrub-heath, Shrublands of acacia, casuarina, Eucalyptus eudesmoides (mallalie), Ashby’s banksia and other species, Sceptre banksia and sandplain cypress woodland, Acacia rostellifera (summer-scented wattle) thicket.

What we’re doing

A massive project is underway to plant a million trees and shrubs in the red soils of a 1350 hectare cleared area. We were able to start thanks to a partnership with Perth’s Carbon Positive Australia, and the generosity of supporters will help us give the new seedlings the best chance of survival in the months and years ahead. 

Eurardy has benefited enormously from the generous support of volunteers. Volunteers joined forces with our Reserve Managers to survey Malleefowl activity, making an important contribution to what we know about this nationally vulnerable species on Eurardy.

It was a special day when an active mound was found, but even better when some broken eggshell and downy feathers on the mound’s edge indicated a successful hatching.

Juvenile Thorny Devil. Photo Ben Parkhurst.

The Bungabandi Creek Restoration Project has also benefited from volunteer contributions. Brush has been laid in key sections of the disturbed creekbed and, together with closing a track through the creek, will slow water erosion and re-establish a more natural flow.

We’ve also had great success with rabbit control. Numbers are now so low that many plants have been seen starting to naturally regenerate. In addition to rabbits, foxes and feral goats are also controlled at Eurardy.

Blooming marvellous

When the big reds and yellows of Eurardy Reserve come out to play, they draw an abundance of local birds and insects.

The big reds are Feather-flowers, Claw-flowers and Grevilleas, and when in bloom they cast flushes of palest coral, rosy red and vivid scarlet across the landscape.

The big yellows are Acacias and ground-hugging Everlastings, which stand in gorgeous contrast to the blue sky above. And that’s just the beginning – with flowers in pinks, purples, blues and whites all adding to the heady mix.

Calytrix and Pileanthus wildflowers on Eurardy. Photo Ben Parkhurst.

No wonder Eurardy is one of the most outstanding wildflower destinations along WA’s Batavia Coast.

In 2003 the Wildflower Society of Western Australia began to help with surveys on the reserve, which they still help with today. On their first survey 481 native plant species were identified, and many were pressed and mounted in a field herbarium that’s now regularly updated.

Threatened orchids

Australia has a wide range of native orchids and Eurardy has recorded more than 25 species.

Several orchids found on Eurardy are rare and threatened such as the Northern Dwarf Spider Orchid (Caladenia bryceana subsp. cracens), Small Dragon Orchid (Caladenia barbarella) and the Kalbarri Spider Orchid (Caladenia wanosa).

As well as protecting their habitat, orchid populations are monitored annually. We measure their exact location on permanent transects, record whether they’re flowering and producing seed. This helps us understand their ecology.

Kalbarri spider orchid flowers. Photo Ben Parkhurst.

Cultural values

Eurardy Reserve and the area surrounding it is the traditional country of the Nanda people. This area is of strong cultural significance, particularly Bungabandi Creek, where camping areas and artefacts have been identified. 

Species at Eurardy

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Stories from Eurardy

An everlasting flower in sandy soil.

31/10/2023 31/10/2023

The trials and tribulations of mid-west wildflowers

Our team at Eurardy, in mid-north Western Australia, Nanda Country, are leading an innovative project to demonstrate how we restore the iconic understory of annual wildflowers. This pilot project ‘Re-wilding the mid-west: Bringing wildflowers back to country’ is supported by funding from the Western Australian Government's State NRM Program.

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Seedlings for revegetation work.

16/08/2023 16/08/2023

An update on Eurardy's 1 million tree project

On Eurardy Reserve, Nanda Country, Western Australia, a project began four years ago to plant one million trees and shrubs. In 2019 we partnered with Carbon Positive Australia, a WA-based charity, to create the largest revegetation project in Bush Heritage's history.

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BLOG 11/11/2022

Recycling provides new homes for native animals

Tenaya Duncan, Conservation and Wildlife Biology PhD student at Murdoch University, is using salvaged pallets, fence posts and corrugated iron in a unique way – as homes for native wildlife on our reserves!

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BLOG 12/10/2022

Southern Sandhill Frog calls recorded for the first time at Eurardy!

While most people wouldn’t want to hear squelchy farts while they relax with a glass of wine, Sam was thrilled. He suspected that it could be the sound of a Southern Sandhill Frog (Arenophryne xiphorhyncha).

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BLOG 01/06/2022

Bat monitoring in revegetation

An extensive revegetation project has been underway for the three years at Eurardy Reserve (mid-west WA). We want to know if bats are present in this new planting. Our volunteer assignment was primarily to set everything up to start recording bat activity over the coming months (and maybe years).

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BLOG 06/01/2022

Restoration improves biodiversity & soil

Vegetation clearing for new agricultural land continues to cause environmental degradation, biodiversity loss and increased carbon emissions. But there are also large swathes of land no longer used for agriculture with potential to be remediated.

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BLOG 28/09/2021

Playing the restoration long game

Scientific research into ecological restoration has traditionally focused on plants and animals. But what about what’s in the soil?

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BLOG 13/07/2021

Quoll patrol 🐾

When it rains, it pours! We recently discovered four Western Quolls (Dasyurus geoffroii) on monitoring cameras at two of our midwest Western Australian reserves over the space of two weeks.

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ichard McLellan is monitoring Sandalwood at Hamelin Reserve. Photo Shayne Thomson.

BUSHTRACKS 18/06/2021

The Great Sandalwood Transect

Across a 1500km arc from the Gibson Desert to Shark Bay, researcher Richard McLellan is uncovering the ecological and cultural value of sandalwood.

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BLOG 28/05/2021

Ecosystem restoration focus of $500,000 Volkswagen donation

The funding will be directed to our on-ground conservation work in three states.

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BLOG 10/05/2021

Chuditch cam!

A Western Quoll has been picked up on monitoring cameras at Eurardy Reserve on Nhanda country in WA for the very first time.

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BLOG 31/10/2019

Birds and burrs at Eurardy Reserve

Volunteer Jan describes her time at Eurardy Reserve this spring. From tackling the double gees and cape weed, to hearing a juvenile Pied Butcher Bird learning its song, read on for a week in the life of a Bush Heritage Australia volunteer.

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BUSHTRACKS 17/09/2019

The one million tree project

As Bush Heritage ecologist Ben Parkhurst, his wife Tina Schroeder and their 10-month-old son Liam look on, the first of over 36,000 native seedlings are planted in the loamy, moist soil as part of the first phase of an ambitious project that will eventually see over 1350 hectares of cleared land on Eurardy restored.

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BLOG 01/07/2019

Swept away by Santalaceae

Ecologist Georgina Gould-Hardwick writes about her time spent submersing herself into Santalaceae science at our Eurardy and Charles Darwin Reserves.

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BLOG 25/03/2019

Mad for Malleefowl

There are around 30 known Malleefowl mounds dotted across Eurardy Reserve's 30,000 hectares, but no active mounds recorded in the past decade - until now.

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BLOG 07/09/2018

Eurardy orchids

What pops into your head when you think of orchids? Large tropical ornamental house plants? Did you know that there are a wide range of orchids native to Australia? Even here at Eurardy Reserve, in this semi-arid country we have recorded more than 25 species. As it's threatened species week we're going to highlight 3 that call Eurardy home.

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BLOG 16/08/2018

Frogs galore (and mice) at Eurardy

With small animal monitoring currently happening at Eurardy Reserve in cooler weather than previous years, we've seen a shift in the species we might normally expect to catch.

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BUSHTRACKS 27/03/2018

Eye in the sky

On Charles Darwin and Eurardy reserves in Western Australia, the innovative use of a remote sensing technology is marking the start of a new era in Malleefowl monitoring.

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BLOG 22/09/2017

Lots of life in the Eurardy surveys

Never one to let a chance go by (well, not if I can help it), I recently took a few days of annual leave from my 'day job' to volunteer for this year's Ecological Outcomes Monitoring surveys on Eurardy Reserve.

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BLOG 04/09/2017

National monitoring at Eurardy Reserve

When Australia's national environmental monitoring agency, the Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network (TERN), expanded their WA AusPlots network, Bush Heritage ecologists seized the opportunity to include Eurardy Reserve.

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BLOG 19/02/2017

Restoring York gum woodlands

When my husband, Ben, and I decided to make the move to Eurardy Reserve in WA I was in the middle of searching for a research topic so I could start a PhD. I've landed on a project investigating the recovery of York Gum Woodlands in the mid-west.

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BLOG 22/07/2016

Restoration & revegetation planning

Eurardy Reserve is a special place, with some 700 plant species on the reserve, including a number of threatened, priority-listed and locally endemic species. However there are also cleared patches, a legacy of Eurardy's agricultural history, that have seen little to no natural regeneration for decades. This week we took the first steps towards restoring those patches back to the biodiverse areas they once were.

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BLOG 10/08/2015

Moving to the Western Rangelands

After moving to Eurardy Reserve to work as an ecologist on the Bush Heritage reserves in the Western Rangelands, my wife and I have been settling in and making it our new home. We've spent our time getting to know the landscape and its spectacular array of wildlife and plants. From the stunning Red-tailed Black Cockatoos that welcome you home as you drive through the gate to the gorgeous Splendid Fairy Wrens as you wander near the homestead.

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BLOG 08/12/2014

Burrowing bees

Spring has run its course in the mid-west of Western Australia. Flowers have bloomed and bees have played their role as pollinators. Find out more about some fascinating burrowing bees spotted at Eurardy and Charles Darwin Reserve.

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BLOG 16/06/2014

Trapdoor spiders

Last weekend at Eurardy Reserve (WA) ecologist Vanessa Westcott was working with the Citizen Science volunteers when they spotted the home of a trapdoor spider. The twigs and leaf litter radiating out from the burrow are fastened with web to the rim of the hole. They're used as 'trip lines' so insects walking by can be detected!

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