SA’s new internationally significant fossil national park opens today

Press Releases Environment General

SA’s new internationally significant fossil national park opens today

Susan Close MP
Deputy Premier
Minister for Climate, Environment and Water

Blair Boyer MP
Minister for Education, Training and Skills

Geoff Brock MP
Member for Stuart

Nilpena Ediacara National Park – the internationally-significant fossil site dating back to the dawn of animal life on Earth – will officially open today.

South Australia’s newest national park is located 500km north of Adelaide, near Parachilna, and provides a unique insight into life on Earth 550 million years ago.

It is home to the world’s most comprehensive record of Ediacara fossils and the first multi-cellular creatures that ate, moved and sexually reproduced.

The new park includes an audio-visual experience that recreates the ancient ocean floor, bringing the fossils to life with the latest 3D animation technology and located within the former blacksmiths shop.

The park takes in the Ediacara Hills and 60,000 hectares of the former Nilpena Pastoral lease. It holds an important place within the state’s pastoral heritage and the stone shearing shed, shearers’ quarters and blacksmiths have been restored.

The area is culturally significance to the Adnyamathanha people with traditional ceremonial sites, meeting places and middens located along its creek beds.

To preserve the integrity of the fossils, access to the site is via pre-booked guided tours.

Nilpena has gained significant international attention from researchers, palaeontologists and conservationists, including from NASA and Sir David Attenborough, and featured in a recent ABC TV and online profile – Set in Stone.

The park is a vital component of the current bid in the pursuit of World Heritage listing for areas of the Flinders Ranges.

Nilpena Ediacara National Park has been delivered by the South Australian Government with funding support from the Australian Government and the Flinders Ranges Ediacara Foundation.

For more information visit the Nilpena Ediacara National Park website.

Quotes attributable Susan Close

To think this area was once a shallow seabed and that it gave rise to the first evidence of animal life is truly amazing and incredibly special.

This is a journey 550 million years in the making, a region that has attracted significant international attention. This is not only a place of amazement but a place of learning.

It is yet another example of the wonder of the Flinders Ranges and adds further legitimacy to the pursuit of World Heritage listing.

Quotes attributable to Blair Boyer

This new park and visual experience provide an opportunity for students wanting to learn about fossils and the Earth’s history.

I’m sure this remarkable park will become an annual event for many schools in Adelaide and beyond.

It is just incredible to a site of such palaeontological importance be opened to students, scientist and tourists wanting to discover what ancient life on earth was like.

Quotes attributable to Geoff Brock

I’m absolutely delighted to have this new, internationally significant park within my electorate of Stuart.

The Northern Flinders Ranges is an amazing place to visit, and this new park and interpretation centre will give locals, as well as people from interstate and overseas, another reason to visit this remarkable part of the world.

The addition of Nilpena Ediacara National Park is set to provide a major boost to tourism in the area.

Quotes attributable National Parks and Wildlife Service Executive Director Mike Williams

Nilpena is a dynamic new addition to the already diverse and unique list of national parks in South Australia.

From day one of this project, NPWS has taken a lead role in ensuring the preservation of the region for all future generations.

It will lead to new levels of understanding of the world in which we live, highlighting the importance of our efforts in conservation and environmental care.