Dunlop Nature Reserve

Images ©:
© Michael Mulvaney
Area Data

Dunlop Grassland Nature Reserve, part of Canberra Nature Park, is a 105 hectare reserve located in north-west Belconnen on the ACT/NSW border. The reserve is gently sloping above the narrow flood plains of Gooramon Creek and is largely natural grassland. The reserve contains endangered natural temperate grassland and yellow box- Blakely’s red gum grassy woodland. It supports the endangered golden sun moth and is one of a few known habitats of the rare and locally endemic Canberra raspy cricket.


On the north western boundary of the ACT, north of the suburb of Dunlop.


A number of grassy tracks cross the reserve and the Bicentennial National Trail also passes through the reserve.

105 ha.
ACT Parks and Conservation Service

Environment and Planning Directorate,
GPO Box 158
Canberra City
ACT 2601
Ph 13 22 81 


A long history of sheep, cattle and/or horse grazing. This is now a conservation reserve within the Canberra Nature Park network.


Dunlop Nature Reserve conserves a large area of endangered Natural Temperate Grassland of the South Eastern Highlands and Golden Sun Moth (Synemon plana) habitat.The Reserve also includes the threatened ecological community, Yellow Box - Red Gum Grassy Woodland. Another significant species is the native pea Emu-foot (Cullen tenax). The site also includes White-winged Triller and several plants species rare in the ACT including Alisma plantago-aquatica, Hydrocotyle sibthorpioides, Lotus australis, Zornia dyctiocarpa, Caesia calliantha and Burchardia umbellata

Vegetation Communities  

Natural Temperate Grassland of the South Eastern Highlands, White Box - Yellow Box - Blakely's Red Gum Grassy Woodland, Exotic pasture

What to look for 

Look out for the better areas of native grasslands with their variety of native grasses and wild flowers best seen in spring. Likely to see kangaroos. In the weeks before Christmas look out for male Golden Sun Moth seeking flightless female moths. One of two remaining pairs of the Little Eagle, within the ACT, hunt rabbits and small birds within the reserve, and can be observed gliding across the skies.

Management activities and priorities 

Management includes fire fuel reduction, conservation oriented biomass control and weed control. The main threats are overgrazing by a combination of kangaroos, rabbits and stock, which is a particular issue during dry periods. The reserve has a long boundary interface with Dunlop and fire fuel reduction zones occupy a fair proportion of the reserve. There is monitoring of the condition of grassland and biomass levels.

Local Requests 

Dogs not allowed.

Flora Species 

Acacia alpina, Acaena ovina, Alisma plantago-aquatica, Amphibromus nervosus, Aphanes australiana, Aristida ramosa, Arthropodium fimbriatum, Asperula conferta, Austrostipa bigeniculata, Bothriochloa macra, Bulbine bulbosa, Burchardia umbellata, Caesia calliantha, Calocephalus citreus, Carex appressa, Carex breviculmis, Carex inversa, Cheilanthes austrotenuifolia, Chloris truncata, Chrysocephalum apiculatum, Convolvulus angustissimus subsp. angustissimus, Crassula sieberiana, Cymbonotus lawsonianus, Cynodon dactylon, Desmodium varians, Dichelachne micrantha, Dichondra repens, Drosera peltata, Eleocharis acuta, Eleocharis plana, Eleocharis pusilla, Elymus scaber, Enneapogon nigricans, Eragrostis brownii, Erodium crinitum, Eryngium ovinum, Euchiton involucratus, Euchiton sphaericus, Euphorbia drummondii, Geranium aff. retrorsum, Geranium solanderi, Glycine clandestina, Glycine tabacina, Gonocarpus tetragynus, Goodenia pinnatifida, Gypsophila tubulosa, Haloragis heterophylla, Hydrocotyle laxiflora, Hydrocotyle sibthorpioides, Hypericum gramineum, Hypoxis hygrometrica, Isolepis hookeriana, Juncus filicaulis, Juncus homalocaulis, Juncus subsecundus, Lepidosperma laterale, Leptorhynchos squamatus, Lomandra bracteata, Lomandra filiformis subsp. coriacea, Lomandra filiformis, Lomandra multiflora, Lotus australis, Luzula densiflora, Lythrum hyssopifolia, Microlaena stipoides, Microtis sp., Microtis unifolia, Oxalis perennans, Panicum effusum, Pentapogon quadrifidus, Persicaria prostrata, Plantago varia, Poa labillardierei, Poa sieberiana, Potamogeton tricarinatus, Ranunculus papulentus, Rumex brownii, Rumex dumosus, Rytidosperma auriculatum, Rytidosperma caespitosum, Rytidosperma carphoides, Rytidosperma laeve, Rytidosperma racemosum, Schoenoplectus validus, Schoenus apogon, Sebaea ovata, Solenogyne dominii, Thelymitra pauciflora, Tricoryne elatior, Triptilodiscus pygmaeus, Vittadinia gracilis, Vittadinia muelleri, Wahlenbergia communis, Wahlenbergia luteola, Wahlenbergia multicaulis, Wahlenbergia stricta subsp. stricta, Wurmbea dioica subsp. dioica

Fauna Species 

Olive Legless-lizard, Three-toed Skink, Brown-striped Frog, Common Eastern Froglet, Eastern Banjo Frog, Peron's Tree-frog, Plains Froglet, Smooth Toadlet, Spotted Grass Frog, Whistling Tree-frog, Australasian Grebe, Australasian Shoveler, Australian King-Parrot, Australian Magpie, Australian Pipit, Australian Raven, Australian Reed-Warbler, Australian Wood Duck, Black Swan, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Brown Falcon, Brown Goshawk, Brown Quail, Brown Songlark, Collared Sparrowhawk, Common Blackbird, Common Bronzewing, Common Myna, Common Starling, Crested Pigeon, Crimson Rosella, Diamond Firetail, Dollarbird, Double-barred Finch, Dusky Woodswallow, Eastern Rosella, Eurasian Coot, Eurasian Skylark, European Goldfinch, Fairy Martin, Flame Robin, Freckled Duck, Galah, Golden Whistler, Golden-headed Cisticola, Great Cormorant, Grey Fantail, Grey Shrike-thrush, Grey Teal, Hardhead, Hoary-headed Grebe, Horsfield's Bronze-Cuckoo, House Sparrow, Latham's Snipe, Laughing Kookaburra, Little Black Cormorant, Little Grassbird, Little Pied Cormorant, Magpie-lark, Nankeen Kestrel, Noisy Friarbird, Noisy Miner, Pacific Black Duck, Pallid Cuckoo, Pied Currawong, Purple Swamphen, Red Wattlebird, Red-rumped Parrot, Rufous Songlark, Rufous Whistler, Sacred Kingfisher, Spotted Dove, Spotted Pardalote, Striated Pardalote, Stubble Quail, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Superb Fairy-wren, Superb Parrot, Tree Martin, Wedge-tailed Eagle, Weebill, Welcome Swallow, White-faced Heron, White-necked Heron, White-plumed Honeyeater, White-winged Chough, White-winged Triller, Willie Wagtail, Yellow-rumped Thornbill