About the program

The Recovery Program is all about protecting and looking after the Mount Lofty Ranges Southern Emu-wren (MLRSEW) and the Fleurieu Peninsula Swamps (known as the Fleurieu Swamps).

We do this by:

  • raising awareness and education
  • discussing land management with farmers and other stakeholders
  • on-ground works and population management of the MLR Southern emu-wren and its habitat
  • Supporting conservation of Swamps by encouraging Heritage Agreements, grazing management, weed and pest control and revegetation
  • research and monitoring
  • advocacy and contributing to natural resources management and planning processes.

These activities are undertaken by the Conservation SA Fleurieu Swamps and Emu-wren Project staff – a small group that are just one part of the overall Recovery Program. Coordination of the Recovery Team is also undertaken by these Conservation SA staff members. Landholders play a crucial role in the Program by doing things such as fencing off swamps and managing weeds and observing changes.

Other organisations are also part of the bigger picture Recovery Team.  

When the Recovery Program started in 1993/94 the main focus was actually just to protect the MLR Southern Emu-wren. However, this work led to a better understanding of the habitat of these birds, specifically the Fleurieu Swamps. As a result, in 2003 the Fleurieu Swamps were listed as critically endangered under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Act 1999 (EPBC Act) and became a key focus of the program. Critically endangered is the highest threat category under the EPBC act.

The main funding for this project comes from Natural Resources Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges with supplementary support from Natural Resources South Australian Murray Darling Basin and other grant bodies. Other financial support has come from the state and federal government, with some smaller grants from non-government organisations and public donations.

'It’s worth continuing on and doing the best we can with the available funds to keep the weeds under control.'
- Geoff, beef farmer and part of the Recovery Program since around 2008.


2011 State and Territory Landcare Awards, SA – Toshiba Community Group Award Finalist
2009 South Australian Landcare Awards and Premier’s Natural Resources Management Awards – Certificate of Recognition
2007 Australian Civic Trust Award of Merit  

Support us and get involved

Contact Conservation SA on (08) 8223 5155, [email protected], or at our offices at the Joinery at 111 Franklin Street, Adelaide.

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