New areas for conservation in NSW

New national parks, koala reserves and some former state forests are to be managed for conservation outcomes in NSW.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Minister for the Environment Gabrielle Upton have launched the NSW Koala Strategy. This Strategy will promote a range of measures to protect Australia's iconic koala, including 24,000 hectares of new koala reserves for the much-loved marsupial.

In addition, Minister Upton has announced further new national park additions, totalling 5,400 hectares, and the transfer of 14,200 hectares of state forest to the care of the National Parks and Wildlife Service. These 8 new flora reserves will improve conservation management while maintaining community access for current forms of recreation.

In all, an additional 43,600 hectares will be managed for conservation outcomes in NSW. The following tables and maps provide a summary of respective areas, management arrangements and values to be protected.

Download Maps of the new conservation areas (PDF 2.1MB) announced in May 2018.




Proposed tenure


Part of Carrai


NW of Kempsey

National Park

Adjoining the Castles Nature Reserve, Oxley Wild Rivers National Park and Willi Willi National Park. Mix of high and low-quality koala habitat.

Part of Oakes


SW of Coffs H

National Park

Inholding of Gumbaynggirr National Park. Mostly moderate koala habitat with some areas of high quality habitat. Within an Area of Regional Koala Significance. 2 koala records within forest (last April 2013) and 20 records within 2 km.

Part of Mount Boss


W of Wauchope


Mixed quality koala habitat, koalas likely to occur in moderate to low density.




Flora Reserve

Adjoining Parr State Conservation Area. Moderate koala habitat. 1 record within forest (last September 2014) and 12 records within 2 km.



W of Mittagong

Flora Reserve

Adjoining Nattai National Park. Confirmed koala habitat. Important link in corridor between Blue Mountains and Morton national parks. 2 records within forest (last July 2016) and 20 records within 2 km.

Part of Barrington Tops


W of Gloucester

Flora Reserve

Near Barrington Tops National Park. Mixture of high and low-quality koala habitat. Within an Area of Regional Koala Significance. Low survey effort. 1 recent record (Feb 2016) and 12 records within 2 km.

Part of Belanglo

1,818 *

W of Moss Vale

Flora Reserve

Confirmed high quality koala habitat with more than 50 koala records. 2 koalas radio tracked within last 2 years. Important link in corridor between Blue Mountains and Morton national parks.

Part of Corrabare


SW of Cessnock

Flora Reserve

Adjoining Werakata National Park. Low to moderate koala habitat. Within an Area of Regional Koala Significance. 4 records within 2km and many within 5km (last March 2015).

Part of Meryla

4,084 *

S of Moss Vale

Flora Reserve

Adjoining Morton National Park. Mix of high and low-quality koala habitat.

Part of Olney & Watagan


SW of Cessnock

Flora Reserve

Olney contains moderate koala habitat. 5 records within forest and more than 20 within 2km. Watagan contains highly suitable habitat. 18 records in last 20 years. Within an Area of Regional Koala Significance.

Part of Mt Lindesay, Donaldson and Unumgar

5620 *

W of Kyogle

Flora Reserve

Within an Area of Regional Koala Significance.

  • Donaldson SF has some large areas of modelled high quality habitat. 13 records in last 10 years.
  • Mt Lindesay SF is modelled as mostly moderate quality habitat, with patches of high quality. There are over 30 records from the last 10 years.
  • Unumgar SF is mostly moderate quality habitat, with patches of high quality. Koala records mostly in western third, and provides important link for broader parks.

Note: * final hectares to be determined.




Proposed tenure


Inadequately Reserved Forest Ecosystems

Part of Billilimbra & Ewingbar


SW of Casino

Flora reserve

Adjacent to Washpool Wilderness Area

Key habitat and north -south subregional landscape corridor

Threatened species: stuttering frog, giant barred frog, Pugh’s sphagnum frog Philoria pughi, glossy black-cockatoo, wompoo fruit-dove, sooty owl, powerful owl, masked owl, little lorrikeet, yellow-bellied glider, spotted-tailed quoll, eastern bent-winged bat, southern myotis, red-legged pademelon.

Mostly rainforest

Part of Chaelundi



Flora reserve

Part inholding in Chaelundi National Park and part adjoins Guy Fawkes River National Park

Threatened species: stuttering frog, glandular frog, sphagnum frog, glossy black-cockatoo, powerful owl, masked owl, sooty owl

Part of regional east-west habitat corridor

Part adjoins Chaelundi Wilderness Area

Contains small areas of Stringybark-Apple and Escarpment Redgum




West of Dorrigo

Lease to be administered by NPWS

Connects disparate sections of Bagul Waajaarr Nature Reserve. Approx 5km frontage to the Nymboida River

Identified as key habitat contains moist forest ecosystems. Threatened species: koala, masked owl, Hastings river mouse; glossy black cockatoo, spotted tail quoll

Part of north-south regional habitat corridors between New England NP and Nymboi-Binderay NP; and Hyland SF - important because landscape is largely cleared.

Current lease.

Contains significant areas of Dorrigo White Gum and Central Mid Elevation Sydney Blue Gum and small areas of Dry Grassy Stringybark, Rainforest and Mixed Tableland Stringybark-Gum Open Forest

Part of Putty



Flora reserve

Threatened Species: Glossy Black Cockatoo; Red-crowned Toadlet; Gang-gang Cockatoo; Little Lorikeet; Powerful Owl; Sooty Owl; Scarlet Robin; Spotted-tailed Quoll; Yellow-bellied Glider; Squirrel Glider; Brush-tailed Rock Wallaby; Large eared Pied Bat; Eastern False Pipistrelle; Eastern Bentwing Bat; Great Broad-nosed Bat.

Endangered Ecological Community: Lowland Rainforest.

Approx 15km common boundary with Wollemi National Park.

Contains a significant area of Heath and small area of White Box-Ironbark-Red Gum


Part of Dampier


SW of Tuross Head

Flora reserve

Adjoins Deua National Park

Some improvements to park boundary and protects an area of old growth forest (40% of area)

Contains a significant area of Southern Coastal Foothills Dry Shrub Forest and small areas of Southern Coastal Hinterland Moist Shrub/Vine/Grass Forest, Coastal Escarpment and Hinterland Dry Shrub/Fern Forest and Southern Coastal Hinterland Dry Gully Rainforest




National Park

Part adjoins Morton National Park and Part Budderoo National Park

Intact vegetation on the plateau of the Upper Kangaroo Valley including 'upland swamp' threatened ecological communities

Forms part of the scenic vista from the Belmore Falls and Belmore lookout in Morton NP

Improves connectivity between existing reserves and protects and endangered ecological community (Blue Mountains Shale Cap Forest)

Threatened species - potoroo and potoroo habitat; Morton-Budderoo site managed species area for Deane's Boronia

Contains a significant area of Coastal Escarpment Moist Shrub/Fern Forest and small areas of Tableland and Escarpment Wet Layered Shrub Forest and Tableland and Escarpment Wet Layered Shrub Forest

Part of McPherson


NW of Gosford

Flora reserve

Adjoins Yengo National Park

Contains threatened species - red-crowned toadlet, gang-gang cockatoo, glossy black cockatoo. Many other threatened species listed in adjoining SF expected.

Significant Aboriginal cultural heritage - opportunity for Aboriginal joint management - Aboriginal cultural use, culture camps.


Part of Nulla-Five Day


West of Macksville

Flora reserve

Adjoins New England National Park and Gumbaynggirr National Park; Some improvements to park boundary.

Adjacent to New England Wilderness Area, Part is identified wilderness

Adjacent to New England Key Biodiversity Area

Contains key habitat and forms part of subregional corridor for Yellow-bellied Glider/Golden-tipped Bat

Conservation value identified through Regional Forest Agreement process

Contains a significant area of Rainforest and small areas of Open Coastal Brushbox and Dry Grassy Tallowwood-Grey Gum


Part of Forest Land



Flora reserve

Part lies wholly within Washpool National Park

Key habitat and part of regional corridor between Washpool National Park and Malara State Forest

Threatened species: Pugh’s sphagnum frog Philoria pughi, powerful owl, masked owl. Many other threatened species recorded from within the adjacent national park

Contains small areas of Rainforest, Messmate and Northern Grassy Sydney Blue Gum


Part of Oakwood


Northern Tablelands

Flora reserve

Perimeter of Guy Fawkes River National Park

Key habitat and part north-east corridor Brush-tailed Rock Wallaby/Yellow-bellied glider

Contains small areas of Swamp and Roundleaved Gum


Part of Mernot


Upper Hunter

State Conservation Area

Links Watchimbark Nature Reserve and Curracabundi National Park

Adjacent to Curracabundi Wilderness Area

Unique spinifex grassland and open mallee shrubland on serpentinite geology, including rare plants with high level endemism

sooty owl, spotted tail quoll; habitat for many other species recorded in adjacent national park - glossy black cockatoo, masked owl, powerful owl, koala, parma wallaby

Regional corridor - Mernot- Tuggolo important for brush-tailed rock wallaby and new holland mouse.

May contain River-flat Eucalypt Forest on Coastal Floodplains of the NSW North Coast, Sydney Basin and South East Corner; dry and subtropical rainforest

Contains significant areas of Rainforest, Stringybark-Apple, Barrington Wet New England Blackbutt-Blue Gum and Central Mid Elevation Sydney Blue Gum



Central Region NSW

State Conservation Area

Threatened species - Yellow-bellied glider; glossy black cockatoo (on boundary); Grove’s paperbark (Melaleuca groveana)

Forms part of two regional corridors from Yengo NP to Corrabare SF targeting the yellow-bellied glider and brush-tailed rock wallaby

Adjacent to Greater Blue Mountains Key Biodiversity Area

Significant cultural heritage.





Proposed tenure


Willi Willi National Park




Addition to existing reserve

Area known as Mount Sebastopol contains outstanding geodiversity and biodiversity including unique cave environments which are home to various threatened species including little bent-wing, large bent-wing and eastern bent-wing bats

Previously cleared area is being re-planted with 27,000 trees and shrubs under the Commonwealth Government’s Emissions Reduction Fund.

Limeburners Creek National Park


Port Macquarie


Addition to existing reserve

Contains a mosaic of forested wetlands, dry sclerophyll forest, wet heaths and freshwater wetlands, including three endangered ecological communities: swamp sclerophyll forest; swamp oak forest and freshwater wetlands.

Provides coastal habitat to support local populations of koala, the green and golden bell frog, wallum froglet, the spotted-tailed quoll and several threatened bird species including swift and turquoise parrots.

Land will also enhance the protection of the endangered dwarf heath casuarina –which is only found between Forster and Byron Bay

Lane Cove National Park


North Ryde


Addition to existing reserve

Secure habitat for a diversity of flora and fauna which is critical in an urban landscape.

Importantly bushland is being retained in public ownership which maintains open space for the community.

Kanangra Boyd National Park and Kanangra Boyd Wilderness




Addition to existing reserve

Reducing the number of private holdings in the park will help minimise potential pollutants entering watercourses, while also improving the wilderness value of the park.

Yabbra National Park




Addition to existing reserve

Forms part of an important wildlife corridor that links the Border Ranges to forests south of the Clarence River.

Contains endangered rainforest communities including nationally listed and critically endangered lowland rainforest of subtropical Australia.

Supports habitat for a wide range of plants and animals including 12 threatened species such as the yellow-bellied glider, marbled frogmouth and the wompoo fruit-dove.

Rawdon Creek Nature Reserve


Port Macquarie

Port Macquarie

Addition to existing reserve

Helps to consolidate the reserve boundary thus improving access for fire management.

The Nature Reserve contains low relief coastal blackbutt forest and dry grassy tallowwood-grey gum forest. Tallowwood-grey gum forests are important food trees for koalas which are known to occur in the reserve.

Horton Falls National Park and Crawney Pass National Park within the Brigalow and Nandewar Community Conservation Area


Narrabri & Murrurundi


Addition to existing reserve

Horton Falls National Park is home to a dramatic 83 metre waterfall and this land provides the gateway to the popular Horton Falls picnic area.

Crawney Pass National Park forms part of an important corridor providing habitat connectivity along the Liverpool Range. This land improves the shape of the park, which increases its manageability and viability and the additional habitat will boosts the park’s role as a corridor for plant and animal movement.

Gardens of Stone NP




Addition to existing reserve

Contains several important threatened species and endangered ecological communities that will benefit from increased protection in the park including the grassy white box woodland that is expected to recover from effects of being grazed

NPWS has been restoring habitat on this land for the critically endangered regent honeyeater, under a Saving our Species project.

Adds habitat to the park that supports threatened flora -Capertee stringybark and fauna species including the scarlet robin, brown treecreeper, turquoise parrot and black chinned honeyeater.

Goulburn River National Park and State Conservation Area



Upper Hunter

Addition to existing reserve

Secures public access to the popular spot known as the Drip. Includes habitat for the nationally endangered Regent Honeyeater

Barwon Nature Reserve and State Conservation Area




Addition to existing reserve

Helps consolidate the park’s boundaries which in turn will help improve management.

These reserves conserve endangered Coolibah-Blackbox Woodland, Mitchell grass grassland as well as riparian vegetation along the Barwon River

Bagul Waajaarr Nature Reserve




Addition to existing reserve

Contains grassy tall open forest and wet sclerophyll forest which provides important habitat for species such as microbats, yellow-bellied gliders and glossy black-cockatoos.

Several owl species including the threatened powerful owl and the masked and sooty species also rely on hollows found in old growth forests for nesting or roosting.

Help protect a small population of the nationally endangered Dorrigo Daisy which is being managed under the Saving our Species program and only occurs on the Dorrigo Plateau

South West Woodland Nature Reserve


West Wyalong


Addition to existing reserve

Contains habitat for a number of threatened species including the endangered Malleefowl, which is one of NSW’s iconic threatened species and listed as vulnerable nationally.

Land supports a wide range of plants and animals including the Brown Treecreeper, Flame Robin, Grey-Crowned Babbler, Shy Heath wren, Superb Parrot, Varied Sittella and White-Fronted Chat

Worimi National Park


Nelson Bay

Port Stephens

Addition to existing reserve

Worimi National Park is an Aboriginal owned, leased-back park. The land was acquired, on behalf of the Worimi Conservation Lands Board of Management to improve park management.

Murramarang National Park


Batemans Bay


Addition to existing reserve

Surrounded by national park and has high quality natural vegetation containing a large number of hollow bearing trees that are home to a variety of marsupials and owls.

Acquired under the Coastal Lands Protection Scheme to bring the important coastal land into public ownership.

Flora reserves

Koala at Wapengo in an area adjoining the Murrah Flora ReservesFlora Reserves are dedicated under the Forestry Act 2012 “for the preservation of native flora”. The flora reserve category offers protection similar to reserves established under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974. They meet reserve standards under the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Protected Areas Categories System and are included in the Commonwealth’s definition of the National Reserve System.

National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has previous experience managing flora reserves for koala conservation, gained through management of the Murrah Flora Reserves on the south coast.

A working plan is required to direct the management of each new flora reserve and these will be prepared in consultation with key stakeholders, including Aboriginal communities, recreational users and other agencies. Commercial timber harvesting, logging and grazing are not permitted in flora reserves. 

The transfers will take place in stages and the first transfers commenced July 2018.