Find a Park > Adelaide

Torrens Island Conservation Park

About

Torrens Island Conservation Park is located about 15km north-west of Adelaide. The island is located within the Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary between the Port River, Barker Inlet and Section Bank mudflats.

This important natural area supports mangroves, samphire and coastal dunes, which provide important habitat for a range of native fauna species, including 69 bird species of conservation significance.

There is no public vehicle access to this park. The public can access some partsof the park via small watercraft. There are no jetties or mooring facilitiesfor boats.

Recreation opportunities in the adjacent Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary include dolphin watching, kayaking and boating.

The conservation park covers about 3 quarters of the island, with the remaining land including the state-heritage listed Torrens Island Quarantine Station and two power stations.

Opening hours

There is no public vehicle access to this park. The public can access some parts of the park via small watercraft. There are no jetties or mooring facilities for boats.

Recreation opportunities in the adjacent Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary include dolphin watching, kayaking and boating.

Contact

Park management:

Black Hill National Park and Wildlife Service Office
Phone: (+61 8) 8336 0901
Email: DEW.NPWSNorthLofty@sa.gov.au

Plants and animals

Torrens Island is within an important natural area that extends from Light River to the Port River Estuary. The island is part of an 822ha ecosystem-unit which includes the Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary and the Barker Inlet/St Kilda Aquatic Reserve (listed as a wetland of national importance). It supports a number of vegetation communities, most notably mangroves, samphire and coastal dunes, which provide important habitat for a range of native fauna species, including 69 bird species of conservation significance.

Torrens Island provides one of the very few areas of undeveloped coastline in the Port River estuary, and its dense fringe of mangroves, comprising approximately 60% of the island, are important nursery habitat for fish species, assist movement of fish at high tide, provide shelter and nesting sites for birds, provide a major role in the balance between erosion and deposition of sediments along the coast and create clearer water. This environment supports the Indo-Pacific Bottlenose Dolphin population, which also uses this area for habitat.

Torrens Island also supports large areas of samphire saltmarshes which provide high-tide feeding and roosting areas for a wide range of bird species, including migratory species, as well as important breeding habitat for resident shorebird species.

Pests and diseases

Caulerpa taxifolia

Caulerpa taxifolia has been identified throughout the Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary. This is a highly invasive pest algae species with the potential to spread through to Gulf St Vincent.

There are a number of ways you can help stop the spread.

Traditional owners

The Kaurna People have lived in the Torrens Island area for thousands of years. The area continues to hold important values for the Kaurna People. Historical and current associations are still in place and need to be protected. Several traditional stories are connected with this area, including The Wanderings of Tjirbruke.

Volunteering

Friends of Torrens Island

Friends of Torrens Island’s aim is to preserve, conserve, promote and enhance the environmental, historical and cultural heritage of Torrens Island.

This group runs working bees and tours of the Torrens Island Quarantine Station, which is located adjacent to Torrens Island Conservation Park. Follow them on Facebook.

Estuary Care Foundation

Estuary Care Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation that aims promote the protection of the ecology and shorelines of South Australia’s Port River and Barker Inlet.

On their website you can find information about the foundation, their projects and how to get involved.

Estuary Care Foundation