Wolli Creek Reserve

Location: Turella
The Wolli Creek Valley contains the only bushland of any size and the only large high-quality open space left in the heavily populated and industrialised suburbs of inner southern Sydney. Mangrove and saltmarsh flats were once common in the estuary of the Cooks River, downstream of Tempe. These have now been filled, leaving those along the Wolli Creek and Muddy Creek among the few remaining saltmarsh remnants in the Cooks River system. Today the creek is a lined channel upstream however the lower reaches to the Cooks River is largely in a "natural" state forming a defined but winding watercourse through the Wolli Valley.

A path alongside the creek makes for an enjoyable, easy walk. The park is a nature reserve with scattered grassed areas serviced by toilets, picnic and barbecue facilities. The most interesting part of the valley is the northern bank of the central section, which can be reached via a pathway leading east from the grassed area. The roofs of the valley's rocky overhangs have been blackened by the smoke of thousands of campfires and are the last remaining evidence that Aborigines who once lived here.

The diversity of habitat and strategic location of the Wolli Creek Valley are reflected in the wide range of bird species to be found adjacent to the creek. Approximately 175 species of birds have been recorded in the area. Several species of freshwater and saltwater fish can be found in the Wolli Creek in areas above and below the fish ladder. The fish ladder, or "rock-ramp fishway" was constructed to enable fish to bypass the weir at Henderson St, Turrella, allowing migration to other areas of the creek.

The lower, tidal reaches of Wolli Creek are home to a plant community known as saltmarsh, or coastal saltmarsh. The plant community includes various salinity-tolerant species such as Knobby Club-rush (Ficinia nodosa), Samphire (Sarcocornia quinqueflora), Sea Rush (Juncus kraussii), Seablite (Suaeda australis), Streaked Arrowgrass (Triglochin striata) and others. Coastal saltmarsh has been recognised as a carbon sink as well as a filter of nutrients maintaining water quality and is listed as an Endangered Ecological Community under the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995.

How to get there:
train to Turrella, cross railway and creek via Henderson Street; or train to Bardwell Park; or by car to Girrawheen Park, View St., Earlwood.

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