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Location Australia, Tasmania
Central coordinates 145o 56.39' East  43o 21.88' South
IBA criteria A4i, A4ii
Area 163 ha
Altitude 0 - 30m
Year of IBA assessment 2009

BirdLife Australia

Summary These small islands together support more than 1% of the world population of Short-tailed Shearwater, Fairy Prion, Little Penguin and Black-faced Cormorant.

Site description The Port Davey IBA consists of selected islands in the Breaksea Island, Swainson Island, Mutton Bird Island and Trumpeter Islets Groups off the south-west coast of Tasmania. These four island groups collectively comprise a string of small inshore islands of Southwest National Park, extending from Hobbs Island, about 10 km north of Port Davey, to Mutton Bird Island, about 10 km south of Port Davey. The IBA includes the following islands which are important for breeding seabirds: Breaksea Islands, Kathleen Island and Mavourneen Rocks in the Breaksea Island Group; Big Caroline Rock, Swainson Island, Hay Island, Shanks Islands and Lourah Island in the Swainson Island Group; South East Mutton Bird Islet, South West Mutton Bird Islet, Mutton Bird Island, Sugarmouse Island, East Pyramids, Sugarloaf Rock, Wendar Island and Wild Wind Islets in the Mutton Bird Island Group; and The Coffee Pot, West Pyramid, Trumpeter Islets and Hobbs Island in the Trumpeter Islets Group. With the exception of Lourah Island, all islands captured by the IBA are small and rocky with sparse grass and annual herb cover, and sometimes with low shrubs on larger or sheltered islands. The western coast of Lourah Island is mostly devoid of vegetation, but the eastern shore has dense vegetation typical of the nearby mainland.

Key Biodiversity Pacific Gull and Sooty Oystercatcher also breed on islands around Port Davey; Brothers et al. (2001) recorded a total of 18 pairs and three nests of Pacific Gull and 33 pairs and one nest of Sooty Oystercatcher across the islands captured by this IBA.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Little Penguin Eudyptula minor breeding  1978-1997  16,522 breeding pairs  poor  A4ii  Least Concern 
Fairy Prion Pachyptila turtur breeding  1978-1997  27,020 breeding pairs  poor  A4ii  Least Concern 
Short-tailed Shearwater Ardenna tenuirostris breeding  1978-1997  956,686 breeding pairs  medium  A4ii  Least Concern 
Black-faced Cormorant Phalacrocorax fuscescens breeding  1978-1998  230 breeding pairs  medium  A4i  Least Concern 

IBA Monitoring

2008 low not assessed not assessed
Medium - based upon reliable but incomplete / partially representative data

Invasive & other problematic species, genes & diseases invasive non-native/alien species/diseases - unspecified species happening now some of area/population (10-49%) no or imperceptible deterioration low

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Southwest National Park 618,267 protected area contains site 128  
Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Site 1,407,513 protected area contains site 163  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Coastline Sea cliffs, rocky shores & rocky islets  100%

Land ownership Managed by the Parks and Wildlife Service.

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
nature conservation and research 100%

Protection status All islands are contained within Southwest National Park.

Acknowledgements Mark Holdsworth contributed data.

References Brothers, N., Pemberton, D., Pryor, H. and Halley, V. (2001) Tasmania's Offshore Islands: seabirds and other natural features. Tasmanian Museum and Art gallery: Hobart.

Skira, I.J., Brothers, N.P. and Pemberton, D. (1996) Distribution, abundance and conservation status of Short-tailed Shearwaters Puffinus tenuirostris in Tasmania, Australia. Marine Ornithology 24: 1-14.

Parks and Wildlife Service (1999) Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area Management Plan. Parks and Wildlife Service: Hobart.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Port Davey Islands. Downloaded from on 26/10/2016

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