Kimberley tropical savanna

Australia

A subtropical – tropical savanna area at the northwestern edge of Australia extending from around Katherine in the Northern Territory to Port Hedland in Western Australia. The area is a remarkable wealth of biodiversity and endemism (full of species found nowhere else on earth). It is rugged terrain with an ancient sandstone past, and is covered today by savanna, woodlands, wetlands and even monsoon rainforest.

Kimberley

Status

Protection
0 %

Status

Size

335,299 km²

UNESCO World Heritage Sites​

Nil

 

Background – CC Attribution Share Alike 4.0 International – SuzyR54, 2015 / Map – CC Attribution Share Alike 4.0 International – Every-leaf-that-trembles, 2020

ACT
Help your Ecoregion
So what can you do to help your ecoregion? Below is a list to help you support your ecoregion, while also achieving life's everyday tasks. Don’t underestimate your power in doing good for nature!

PRODUCTS

Food and Homeware: Good Riddance

Services

Holidays: Mitchell Grass Retreat

At Home
Below is a list of actions you can easily take at home to minimise your impact on the ecoregion in which you live, and the rest of the planet too!
In your Garden
Below is a list of native plants and habitat creation tips you can use in your garden or on your property to give your ecoregion and its species a boost!

CANOPY LAYER

Plant the fantastic Boab (Adansonia gregorii) and Cluster Fig (Ficus racemosa) if you have space along with Wild Plum (Terminalia platyphylla), Cabbage Gum (Eucalyptus confertiflora) and Woollybutt (Eucalyptus miniata). To create habitat, consider installation of nestboxes for native birds and creating hollows in old, dead tree limbs.

SUB-CANOPY LAYER

Plant native sub-canopy trees and tall shrubs including Swamp Bloodwood (Corymbia ptychocarpa), Weeping Paperbark (Melaleuca leucadendra), the stunning palms Livistona eastonii and Livistona kimberleyana, Sticky Kurrajong (Brachychiton viscidulus), the Kapok Bush (Cochlospermum fraseri) and in wetter areas, the River Pandanus (Pandanus aquaticus). To create habitat, consider installation of nestboxes for native birds and creating tree hollows in old, dead tree limbs.

SHRUB LAYER

Plant native shrubs such as Silky-leaved Grevillea (Grevillea pteridifolia), Rock Grevillea (Grevillea heliosperma), Curly Wattle (Acacia wickhamii), Conkerberry (Carissa lanceolata) and Sickle-leaved Wattle (Acacia tumida) for bright flowering colours. These plants create dense shrubby refugia and provide plenty of nectar for birds and mammals. To create habitat, consider installing insect hotels, compost-heaps and bird-baths in this layer.

GROUND LAYER

Plant tall native herbaceous species like Native Cotton (Gossypium australe) and the structural Mangrove Fern (Acrostichum speciosum) in coastal areas, along with colourful, tufty herbs like Gomphorena flaccida, Tall Mulla Mulla (Ptilotus exaltatus) and lovely Lemon-grass (Cymbopogon procerus). To create habitat, consider installing a pond or bog-garden with native aquatic and riparian plants, log-piles for sheltering amphibians and reptiles and leave areas of leaf-litter for important insects.

Learn

In the northwest of Australia, the Kimberley is perhaps one of the most well-known of the country’s natural wonders. Despite its fame, it is a very remote area dominated by rugged sandstone fault blocks, valleys and dramatic gorges. Among the coastal regions, swathes of mangrove swamps and adorn coastal islets, while further inland open savanna, woodlands and even pockets of unique monsoon rainforest occur. These plant communities host over 2,000 species of native plants. The bird life in the area is particularly rich with over 295 recorded here, including many migratory shorebirds that use the Kimberley as an area to re-fuel during the dry season. Many endemic reptiles, frogs and mammals occur here including cliff-loving geckos, rainforest frogs and tiny rock-wallabies. The area has been spared much of the human destruction that has taken place elsewhere in mainland Australia and as such is a biodiversity stronghold for the nation.

Ecoregion Structure
The structure of the ecoregion is defined as the key living and non-living features characterising its ecosystems, and the differences between how these ecosystems are arranged. For example, layers of vegetation, geology, habitat features and landscapes.

Geology

A rugged expanse of largely sandstone ranges and weathered plains

Climate

Tropical - Subtropical

Iconic Landscapes

Native plant communities

Scenes by @blueringmedia
Ecoregion Composition
The composition of the ecoregion is defined as the biodiversity that inhabits its ecosystems, and the differences between this biodiversity. For example, communities, populations, species, subspecies and genetic traits.
Keystone Species​
Keystone species are those that have a disproportionately large effect on the ecosystems in which they live, relative to their natural abundance there. In other words, species with a really important role in the health of ecosystems.
Flagship Species
Flagship species are those that are chosen by people to represent a wider conservation message, usually for a given place or social context, and as such often carry conservation messages for wider biodiversity.
Recently Extinct Species
All around the world, biodiversity is declining at a concerning rate. For some species it's already too late, and they have disappeared from the ecoregions they once called home. These are some examples of those lost species.

Lord Howe Fantail
(Rhipidura cervina)

Lord Howe Thrush
(Turdus vinitinctus)

Ecoregion Function
The function of the ecoregion is defined as how its structural and compositional components all work together to form ecological relationships and processes which change over time through geological shifts and evolution by natural selection.

Keystone Relationships

Boab trees help keep soil conditions humid, promote nutrient recycling, and prevent soil erosion. They are also an important source of food, water, and shelter for many animals, especially as they mature in size.

Life-support Systems​

Biodiversity is fundamental to a healthy planet and thriving communities, but the world's species are under tremendous threat.