- 1.3 km circuit
- Suitable for
- Walking, Hiking
- Park (national park, conservation park, forest, reserve)
- Moorunde Wildlife Reserve
- Download maps & GPS files
- 2 GPS files
- 8 photosJump to Photos section
- Travel options
- Travel time from Adelaide
- 1-2 hours
About the Walking Trail
Explore the harsh and variable climate of the mallee which accommodates a tremendous diversity of plants and animals that have each developed characteristics and tactics to survive in this low-rainfall, semi-arid environment. It is an important habitat that is home of native birds and animals, that the Nganguraka people called Ngart’s (totems).
Start out early on the 1.3km Mallee Trail (sometimes called the Nature Trail) and watch out for Muyruyi (the Southern Hairy-nosed Wombat), who stay cool by sheltering from the sun during the day in underground burrows. You probably wont see the wombats during the day as they emerge at night to feed on a range of herbaceous plants. The Southern Hairy-nosed Wombat (Lasiorhinus latifrons), one of three living species of wombat, lives in semi-arid regions of South Australia.
All species of wombat have suffered population fragmentation since European settlement of Australia through hunting, culling, land clearing, introduction of toxic weeds and competition from other native and feral grazers. Since European settlement, around two-thirds of the mallee in south-eastern Australia has been cleared for agriculture. Remnants of this unique ecosystem remain in conversation parks and sanctuaries like this one.
Moorunde Wildlife Reserve, established in 1968, is managed by the Natural History Society of South Australia, and was the first sanctuary established specifically for the Southern Hairy-nosed Wombat. With a total area of 6,900ha, it is one of the largest wombat sanctuaries in the world. In 1973, the Chicago Zoo purchased land north of Moorunde and established Brookfield Conservation Park as a wombat sanctuary. In the 1990s, Earth Sanctuaries established Yookamurra to the south of Moorunde. These three large reserves, together with numerous smaller private properties now form a large contiguous area providing a protected habitat for wombats and many other native animals.
Access the Mallee Trail (Nature Trail) is via Moorundie Rd (an unsealed dirt road). Turn off Halfway House Rd, keep to the right (left fork is Frost Rd), then travel 7km to the Moorunde Wildlife Reserve sign and the trail. On the way, you will pass one of the Natural History Society of South Australia’s smaller reserves, Nardoo.
Explore the two hikes in the nearby Brookfield Conservation Park: