Lincoln National Park
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (January 2014)|
|Lincoln National Park
Limestone cliffs at Wanna
|Nearest town or city||Port Lincoln|
|Established||28 August 1941|
|Area||216.38 km2 (83.5 sq mi)|
|Managing authorities||Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources|
|Website||Lincoln National Park|
|See also||Protected areas of South Australia|
Lincoln National Park is a national park in South Australia, Australia, 249 kilometres (155 mi) west of Adelaide and 9.5 kilometres (5.9 mi) south of Port Lincoln. It consists of a mainland area on the Jussieu Peninsula on the south eastern tip of Eyre Peninsula and a number of nearby Islands. The park contains significant sites of natural, indigenous and early European heritage.
Lincoln National Park occupies the majority of Jussieu Peninsula, at the south eastern tip of Eyre Peninsula. The remainder of the Jussieu Peninsula is occupied by the Memory Cove Wilderness Protection Area. The western gateway to the park is via the isthmus which connects the Jussieu Peninsula to the mainland. The Sleaford Mere Conservation Park abuts the western border of the park. Land-based park entry is made by road at both the northern and southern sides of the isthmus. The south road is 4WD access only.
The northern coastline of the peninsula curls northward to Cape Donington, where the Cape Donington Lighthouse is situated. Cape Donington is the southern point at the mouth of Port Lincoln, the large, sheltered deep water harbor on which the township and wharf of Port Lincoln are located. The eastern coast of the national park which faces onto Spencer Gulf extends from Cape Donington to Taylor’s Landing (opposite Taylor Island).
The southern boundary of the national park curls southward from Mary Ellis Wreck Beach in the west to the east side of Jussieu Bay in the east. The coastline varies from extensive sand dunes behind Sleaford Bay to limestone cliffs on the east side of Jussieu Bay. The seas in this exposed area are very rough, with dangerous rips leading to numerous drownings.
Lincoln National Park includes the following islands which are located in the waters adjoining the Jussieu Peninsula:
- Bicker Isles and Horse Rock in the body of water known as Port Lincoln.
- Rabbit Island (in Louth Bay), Donington Island, Carcase Rock, an unnamed island in Shag Cove, Owen Island, and an unnamed islet south of Taylor Island in Spencer Gulf.
- Curta Rocks, Liguanea Island and Albatross Island (immediately south of Thistle Island) in the Great Australian Bight.
Flora and fauna
The national park is largely covered by coastal mallee eucalypts around outcrops of granite. The sand dunes on the southern coastline have smaller shrub coverage.
The park is home to a number of resident as well as migratory bird and animal species. Numerous kangaroos, wallabies and emus reside in the park. Feral foxes were once common in the national park, endangering the existence of many native animals, however after an extensive baiting and culling program, their numbers have diminished. With the reduction in fox numbers, a rebound in goanna and bush stone curlew populations have been recorded. Brush-tailed bettongs and malleefowl have been reintroduced in the park and are now becoming common.
Migratory birds such as stints and sandpipers spend summer in the national park as part of their seasonal migrations from places as distant as the Arctic Circle and Siberia. Southern right whales are visible in the water surrounding the park during their seasonal migrations between July and November and Australian sea lions can be seen on rocks and small islands off the coast.
In 1941, an area of land on the Jussieu Peninsula was dedicated as a Flora and Fauna Reserve in order "to conserve the natural environment and historic values of the area". In 1972, the reserve was renamed as the Lincoln National Park following the passing of the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972 (SA). In the years 1972-1992, the park increased in size by the addition of land at Stamford Hill, Cape Donington, Wanna and many of the islands adjoining the coast of the Jussieu Peninsula. The Lincoln Conservation Reserve which was proclaimed in 1993 under the Crown Lands Act 1929, was added to the park’s management regime and subsequently removed after the declaration of the reserve as the Lincoln Conservation Park. In June 1999, the boundary of the park was extended down to Mean Low Water Mark. In 2004, a parcel of land consisting of land around Memory Cove and the following islands - Hopkins, Lewis, Little, Smith and Williams, was excised from the park and established as a separate protected area under the Wilderness Protection Act 1992 (SA). This area was named the Memory Cove Wilderness Protection Area.
Prior use of the land
The Aboriginal tribes of Barngala and Nauo were the first people to have lived in the region. Archaeological digs have found sites of stone working, including fish traps, and middens throughout the park.
Matthew Flinders was the first European to arrive in the region, whilst circumnavigating the Australian continent on HMS Investigator in 1802. He climbed Stamford Hill where he surveyed the Lower Eyre Peninsula. A stone obelisk monument was erected there in 1844 by Sir John Franklin in tribute to Flinders' achievements. Eight crew members of the Investigator, including two officers drowned in the dangerous waters at the southern end of Jussieu Peninsula, whilst in search of fresh water. Numerous geographical names in the area are associated with this event. They include Cape Catastrophe and numerous islands named after deceased crew members. At Memory Cove, a stone tablet was erected by Flinders in their honour. The coastline was also charted by French explorer Nicolas Baudin in the same year. Geographical features still bearing French names include Cape Colbert, Cape Tournefort, Jussieu Bay and the Jussieu Peninsula itself.
Early European settlement
Subsequent to the survey by Flinders, the land was settled by a small number of Europeans, mainly along Cape Donington (named after the birthplace of Flinders), where the first grain crop was sewn in 1875. Other industries that occurred in the early parts of European settlement were woodcutting, grazing and guano mining. Donington cottage, which still stands and is accessible to the public, is a relic of that era. The Cape Donington Lighthouse was built in 1905. A hexagonal concrete tower, it stands 32 m high and is still in operation. On 5 April 1907 the ketch Mary Ellis, on its way from Port Adelaide to Venus Bay, got caught in a gale and was wrecked on a beach along Sleaford Bay, now named Mary Ellis Wreck Beach. Despite total destruction of the ship, no casualties were recorded.
The park hosts a range of activities including bushwalking, four-wheel driving, camping, snorkeling, scuba diving, swimming and fishing. Numerous bushwalking trails are available throughout the park, including the 93 km Investigator Trail along the coast of the national park, and the Stamford Hill Hike to the highest point in the national park where the Matthew Flinders monument is present. Much of the park is only accessible via four wheel drive tracks. The park is home to the Sleaford to Wanna sand dune track, one of the few sand four wheel drive tracks in the state. There are many camping sites throughout the park and Donington cottage can be rented. The coastline is rich with fish and fishing is allowed.
- "CAPAD 2012 South Australia Summary (see 'DETAIL' tab)". CAPAD 2012. Australian Government - Department of the Environment. 6 February 2014. Retrieved 6 February 2014.
- "Lincoln National Park Management Plan" (PDF). Department of Environment Water and Natural Resources. 2004. p. 2. Retrieved 26 January 2014.
- "Lincoln National Park Management Plan" (PDF). Department of Environment Water and Natural Resources. 2004. p. 7. Retrieved 26 January 2014.
- "Conservation Parks of Lower Eyre Peninsula Management Plan" (PDF). Department for Environment and Heritage. 2007. pp. 1–2. Retrieved 21 October 2014.
- Lincoln National Park brochure Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, Government of South Australia (2013). Retrieved 2014-01-23.
- "Stone Obelisk commemorates explorer Matthew Flinders". Monument Australia. Retrieved 1 June 2014.
- Property Location Browser V2 Government of South Australia. Accessed 2014-01-23.
- "The Mary Ellis Report - team 2" (PDF). Flinders University, Department of Archaeology. Retrieved 1 June 2014.