|Location||Australia, South Australia|
|Central coordinates||138o 15.30' East 34o 26.62' South|
|IBA criteria||A1, A4i|
|Altitude||0 - 10m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2009|
Summary This IBA regularly supports more than 1% of the world populations of Black-faced Cormorant, Red-necked Stint, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, Banded Stilt, Red-capped Plover, Sooty Oystercatcher, Pied Oystercatcher and Silver Gull. The IBA also supports populations of the endangered Australasian Bittern and vulnerable Fairy Tern.
Site description This IBA consists of the continuous mudflats along the north and east of Gulf of St Vincent north of Adelaide. It extends from Ardrossan in the north-west, past the Price saltworks to the mouth of the Port River and Outer Harbour at Adelaide. The main habitats are two large salt works used by salt-tolerant shorebirds and as high-tide roosts for other shorebirds, intertidal mudflats and mangroves, and some other small coastal wetlands. Much of the IBA abuts residential and industrial development, especially to the north of Adelaide. Key sites within the IBA are Price saltworks (has supported threshold numbers of eight species), Clifton Conservation Park (six species), Parham (two species), Port Prime (one species), Dry Creek (=ICI, St Kilda, Penrice) saltfields, Salisbury wetlands especially Greenfields, Barker Inlet wetlands, Bolivar sewage works and Buckland Park Lake (seven species), Port River mouth (one species), Torrens island complex (one species) and Outer Harbour (two species). Many birds move between these sites and the area is best treated as a single IBA. Management of the IBA varies from unmanaged access to off-road vehicles in parts of Pt Gawler CP to well-managed access in the defence land south of Port Wakefield. Greenfields Wetlands and most of the freshwater part of Barker Inlet Wetlands are artificial wetlands created in the last 30 years; these have high bird conservation values but support different species to the natural habitats. The number of shorebirds using this IBA has declined since the 1970s and 1980s, and it no longer supports threshold numbers of several species.
Key Biodiversity A single high count of 200 Blue-billed Duck at Bolivar Sewage Ponds in 2001 (Atlas of Australian Birds database); this species may be regular in significant numbers but data are lacking. A single high count of 15,000 Whiskered Tern in 1993 at Dry Creek Saltfields, where thousands in 1985 (Carpenter et al. 2003). Other high counts in 2000 include 805 Greenshank, 743 Bar-tailed Godwit, 2019 Red Knot, 702 Great Knot and 1796 Curlew Sandpiper (Wilson 2000). Counts of 1300 Banded Lapwing in Clinton CP in 1985 and 500 in 1983 (Carpenter et al. 2003). One record of critically endangered Orange-bellied Parrot in October 2006 (Orange-bellied Parrot Winter Count and Re-sights Database). Several records of the vulnerable Australian Painted Snipe (C. Rogers in litt. 2007; Atlas of Australian Birds database) and at least one record of Australian Little Bittern (Atlas of Australian Birds database). Slender-billed Thornbill breeds in some saltmarsh areas and Rock Parrot was frequently reported in Atlas of Australian Birds surveys undertaken from 1998 to 2008 (Atlas of Australian Birds database).
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Australasian Bittern Botaurus poiciloptilus||unknown||2008||1-2 individuals||medium||A1||Endangered|
|Black-faced Cormorant Phalacrocorax fuscescens||resident||1966-1993||2,000 nests||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Pied Oystercatcher Haematopus longirostris||unknown||1979-2008||21-130 individuals||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Sooty Oystercatcher Haematopus fuliginosus||unknown||1979-2008||119-146 individuals||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Banded Stilt Cladorhynchus leucocephalus||non-breeding||1979-2008||12,592-13,936 individuals||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Red-capped Plover Charadrius ruficapillus||unknown||1979-2008||1,731-3,810 individuals||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Red-necked Stint Calidris ruficollis||non-breeding||1979-2008||18,382-28,912 individuals||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Sharp-tailed Sandpiper Calidris acuminata||non-breeding||1979-2008||4,864-16,864 individuals||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Larus novaehollandiae||resident||1987||80,000 individuals||-||A4i||Not Recognised|
|Fairy Tern Sternula nereis||unknown||1998-2008||200 individuals||-||A1, A4i||Vulnerable|
|2008||medium||not assessed||not assessed|
|Medium - based upon reliable but incomplete / partially representative data|
|Natural system modifications||dams & water management/use - abstraction of surface water (unknown use)||likely in long term (beyond 4 years)||some of area/population (10-49%)||slow but significant deterioration||medium|
|Residential and commercial development||housing and urban areas||likely in long term (beyond 4 years)||small area/few individuals (<10%)||very rapid to severe deterioration||low|
|Protected area||Designation||Area (ha)||Relationship with IBA||Overlap with IBA (ha)|
|Barker Inlet-St. Kilda||Aquatic Reserve||2,669||protected area overlaps with site||61|
|Clinton||Conservation Park||1,915||protected area contained by site||1,922|
|Port Gawler||Conservation Park||418||protected area contained by site||419|
|St. Kilda-Chapman Creek||Aquatic Reserve||1,270||protected area overlaps with site||574|
|Torrens Island||Conservation Park||604||protected area contained by site||80|
|Wills Creek||Conservation Park||2,298||protected area overlaps with site||1,661|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Shrubland||Chenopod shrubs, samphire shrubs and forblands; Other shrublands||minor|
|Coastline||Intertidal mud, sand & salt flats; Mangrove wetlands; Salt marshes||major|
Land ownership Commonwealth/Federal (Department of Defence); South Australian state government (Department for Environment and Heritage); private (salt works).
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|Notes: Commercial and recreational fishing.|
|nature conservation and research||minor|
|Notes: Salt works; residential and industrial development abuts IBA.|
Protection status Several - see separate section.
Access/Land-Owner requests Public access is prohibited on Department of Defence land at Proof Range.
Acknowledgements David Close, John Cox and Rodney Attwood commented on the nomination.
References Birds SA (2008) Shorebirds and saltfields. Wingspan 18: 12-15. Carpenter, G., Black, A., Harper, D. and Horton, P. (2003) Bird Report 1982-1999. South Australian Ornithologist 34: 93-151.
Close, D.H. (2008) Changes in wader numbers in the Gulf St Vincent, South Australia, 1979-2008. The Stilt 54: 24-27.
Copley, P.B. (1995) The status of seabirds in South Australia. Pp.139-180 in Ross, G.J.B., Weaver, K. and Greig, J.C. (eds) The status of Australia's seabirds. Canberra: Environment Australia.
Waterman, M. (1968) The Black-faced Cormorant breeding at Outer Harbor. South Australian Ornithologist 25: 23.
Wilson, J.R. (2000) South Australia wader surveys. January and February 2000. Unpublished report. Melbourne: Australian Wader Studies Group.
City of Salisbury (2008) Salisbury City Plan 2020: Sustainable Futures. Downloaded from http://cweb.salisbury.sa.gov.au/manifest/servlet/binaries?img=7580&stypen=html in November 2008.
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Gulf St Vincent. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 31/01/2015
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