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Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage
9 October 2001
The new Bunkers Conservation Reserve in the magnificent Flinders Ranges is now open to the public.
Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill officially launched the new reserve last week, saying the property was purchased for conservation with funding from the Federal Government's National Reserve System Program, under the Natural Heritage Trust, and the Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby Preservation Association Inc.
Senator Hill said the site boasts three listed geological monuments including a significant fossil site of nationally and regionally extinct species.
The new reserve, with an area of 144km2, is located 70km north of Hawker and 25km east of Wilpena Pound. Adjoining the Flinders Ranges National Park, the reserve was formerly part of the Willow Springs Station and contains the majority of Loves Mine Range and the range of hills known as The Bunkers
Senator Hill acknowledged the invaluable contribution of volunteer organisations to conservation projects in the Flinders Ranges.
"The Bunkers Conservation Reserve provides an excellent example of governments working together with community groups to further national biodiversity conservation objectives," Senator Hill said.
"The Hunting and Conservation Branch (SA) of the Sporting Shooters Association of Australia, of which the Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby Preservation Association is a part, has been involved in feral animal control projects in various national parks and private properties in the Flinders Ranges since 1992.
"The involvement of the Sporting Shooters Association and a range of other community groups and individuals over the years has been integral to the success of Operation Bounceback, a multi-award winning ecological restoration program operating in the Flinders Ranges.
"The reserve has spectacular arid mountain scenery, rocky hills and ridges, and undulating valleys. Importantly, the reserve is home to two colonies of the Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby which is nationally listed as a vulnerable species - the Flinders Ranges form the core of this species' range in South Australia."
Bunkers Conservation Reserve is to be managed for biodiversity conservation and the protection of geographical, geological and scenic features.
A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between the Yellow-Footed Rock-Wallaby Preservation Association Inc. and the South Australian Minister for Environment and Heritage.
This will ensure that management of the reserve is substantially integrated with all appropriate and relevant National Parks and Wildlife Service (SA) programs and activities in the adjoining Flinders Ranges National Park.
9 October 2001
Belinda Huppatz (Senator Hill's Office) 08 8237 7920 or 0419 258 364