West Jerrabomberra Grassland Reserve

Images ©:
© Sarah Sharp
Area Data 

A majority of Jerrabomberra West Nature Reserve is generally flat, lowland native grassland with scattered box-gum woodland on gently rolling slopes in the south. The reserve is visible from the Monaro Highway and provides an example of the ‘treeless plains’ and woodland transition area that were typical of the Canberra region before European settlement. Jerrabomberra West (261 ha) and Jerrabomberra East (40 ha) are the two sites that form Jerrabomberra Grassland Nature Reserve; Woods Lane adjoins Jerrabomberra East Grassland Reserve.


Southern part of the Jerrabomberra Valley. It is bordered by rural land on the north, south and west and the Monaro Highway forms the eastern boundary.

261 ha
ACT Parks and Conservation Service

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


Jerrabomberra West has a long history of pastoral use. Past stock grazing was conservative and the grassland is dominated by native grasses and forbs and relatively undisturbed. The reserve is remote from suburban disturbance such as higher levels of recreational use, impacts from domestic pets or modification of vegetation to create fire asset protection zones.

Part of the reserve is enclosed within a kangaroo proof fence which is used in research on the impacts of kangaroo grazing.

There are very few access points and few management tracks in the reserve. This is consistent with the National Recovery Plan for the Grassland Earless Dragon which recommends restricted access and limited visitor use.


Jerrabomberra West protects a large 180 (ha) area of endangered Natural Temperate Grassland (NTG) which is contiguous with grassland on neighbouring rural land. It is a key area for NTG conservation in the ACT. It is one of three reserves nationally in which the ‘northern’ form of the endangered Grassland Earless Dragon (Tympanocryptis pinguicolla) is known to occur. It supports a diverse grassland reptile fauna and populations of three other threatened grassland species: Striped Legless Lizard (Delma impar), Golden Sun Moth (Synemon plana) and Perunga Grasshopper (Perunga ochracea). It contains a small area of endangered Yellow box-Blakely’s Red-gum Grassy Woodland, which is a component of one of the largest, best connected and most diverse areas remaining in Australia. It is one of the few known locations of the rare and locally endemic Canberra Raspy Cricket (Cooraboorama canberrae). Open rocky areas within the woodland are habitat of the vulnerable Pink-tailed Worm Lizard (Aprasia parachulla). Jerrabomberra West is one of just two recorded locations of Medusa Bogsedge (Schoenus latelaminatus) in the ACT. It supports relatively large populations of Austral Mudwort (Limosella australis) and Narrow Plantain (Plantago gaudichaudii).  Other rare plant species include Chamomile Burr Daisy (Calotis anthemoides), Pink Five Corners (Styphelia triflera), Notched Swansons-pea (Swainsona behriana), Swanson’s Silky Pea (Swainsona sericea) and Zornia (Zornia dactiocarpa).  

Vegetation Communities  

Natural Temperate Grassland of the South Eastern Highlands, exotic grassland and Southern Tableland Grassy Woodland. 

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. Walk across the grassland/woodland transition zone. Parts of the reserve are within Woden Homestead and Environs and adjacent to Callum Brae Heritage Precinct, an historic soldier settlement block

Management activities and priorities 

The long term management aim is to conserve and improve the condition and extent of NTG and habitat of the Grassland Earless Dragon
Management focus will:

  • maintain a variety of grass heights within the reserve i.e. by managing grazing pressure of both kangaroos and stock
  • maintain a grassland structure as Grassland Earless Dragon habitat i.e. create an open mid-height structure.
  • maintain open rocky area habitat for the Pink-tailed worm lizard
  • minimise physical disturbance
Local Requests 

No dogs are allowed in the Reserve Area. 

Flora Species 

Alternanthera sp., Arthropodium fimbriatum, Asplenium flabellifolium, Calotis anthemoides, Calotis lappulacea, Cymbonotus lawsonianus, Erodium crinitum, Eryngium ovinum, Galium gaudichaudii subsp. gaudichaudii, Geranium retrorsum, Glycine microphylla, Grevillea ramosissima, Isoetopsis graminifolia, Lactuca serriola, Leucochrysum albicans, Limosella australis, Montia fontana, Onopordum acanthium, Rutidosis leptorrhynchoides, Schoenus latelaminatus, Solanum nigrum, Sonchus oleraceus, Styphelia triflora, Swainsona behriana, Swainsona sericea, Thysanotus patersonii, Tripogon loliiformis, Zornia dyctiocarpa

Fauna Species 

Boulenger's Skink, Common Garden Skink, Cunningham's Skink, Delicate Skink, Eastern Brown Snake, Grassland Earless Dragon, Grey's Skink, Robust Striped-skink, Striped Legless Lizard, Three-toed Skink, Brown-striped Frog, Common Eastern Froglet, Eastern Banjo Frog, Plains Froglet, Smooth Toadlet, Spotted Burrowing Frog, Spotted Grass Frog, Diamond Firetail, Horsfield's Bronze-Cuckoo, Common Brown Butterfly, Golden Sun Moth, Canberra Raspy Cricket, Perunga Grasshopper