South Coast shorebird recovery program

Conjola National Park

Join up

Overview

The pied oystercatcher, little tern and hooded plover are among NSW’s endangered shorebirds. If you're a beach-loving local on the South Coast, volunteer for the shorebird recovery program.

Work
Specific threatened species (plants or animals)
When

From August to April (shorebird breeding season).

Where
Conjola National Park
Grade
Medium
Price
Free
Join up

This volunteering program covers various beaches and lakes south of Wollongong. An activity may take place near Conjola National Park, Murramarang National Park, Meroo National Park or Narrawallee Creek Nature Reserve. As a volunteer, you’ll undertake activities such as:

•    Bird watching
•    Locating nests and chicks
•    Surveying beaches for shorebirds
•    Installing nest protection (temporary fencing and signage)
•    Monitoring nest progress and recording data
•    Identifying threats
•    Educating beach-goers

Programs run during breeding season from August to April, and training courses are frequently offered. So if you live near the beach on the NSW South Coast, find out about volunteering at a nearby national park or reserve. We look forward to hearing from you.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Current alerts in this area

There are no current alerts in this area.

Local alerts

For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/volunteer-activities/south-coast-shorebird-recovery-program/local-alerts

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about South Coast shorebird recovery program.

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    Conjola National Park is accessible via a number of points along the Princes Highway – look for the signposts to particular areas.

    • From Sussex Inlet, take The Springs Road to Goonawarra Drive and other park roads.
    • From Ulladulla or Bendalong, turn north from Bendalong Road onto Cedar Road to reach the Monument Beach picnic area.

    Park entry points

    Road quality

    • Unsealed roads

    Vehicle access

    • 2WD vehicles

    Weather restrictions

    • Dry weather only

    By bike

    Check out the Bicycle information for NSW website for more information.

    By public transport

    For information about public transport options, visit the NSW country transport info website.

    Maps and downloads

    Learn more

    South Coast shorebird recovery program is in Conjola National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

    Aboriginal influence

    Swan Lake, Conjola National Park. Photo: Michael Van Ewijk

    The land around Conjola National Park has been home for the Budawang and Yuin people for about 6000 years. There are many Aboriginal sites in the area, including middens, campsites and rock shelters. At Fishermans Rock, the midden contains fragments of mussels and mud oysters that were once meals for the local Aboriginal people. You'll also see some axe-grinding grooves in the sandstone.

    • Berrara Creek Popular with families, Berrara Creek becomes a beautiful lagoon that leads to the beach. Put your canoe in and paddle upstream, go swimming or fishing.

    Animal planet

    Banksia (Banksia ericifolia) Conjola National Park. Photo: Michael Van Ewijk

    With open forests and scrubland, there are plenty of places to find Conjola's wildlife. Keep your eyes peeled for eastern grey kangaroos, wombats, echidnas, brushtail possums and gliders, along with a huge range of cockatoos and parrots, black swans and herons. As well as providing the perfect place for swimming, canoeing, fishing and water sports, the three lakes adjacent to the park - Conjola, Berringer and Swan - are a significant habitat for many birds, such as little terns, the endangered hooded plover and pied oystercatchers.

    • Berrara Creek Popular with families, Berrara Creek becomes a beautiful lagoon that leads to the beach. Put your canoe in and paddle upstream, go swimming or fishing.
    • Heath Circuit Get close to nature on Heath Circuit, a 24km loop bike ride along signposted trails.

    Driving force

    Couple walking on Monument Beach, Conjola National Park. Photo: Michael Jarman

    You can easily explore Conjola from the comfort of your car. Some of the tracks and trails that take you through forests, past the lakes and to the ocean are even accessible for 2WD vehicles in dry weather. One of the most popular drives is from Cudmirrah to Monument Beach picnic ground, following Goonawarra Drive, Blackbutt Road and Cedar Road. Just take care as you're driving along, because you'll be sharing the trails with cyclists, walkers and horse-riders as well as wildlife, which also cross the tracks mainly in the early morning and late afternoon.

    • Berrara Creek Popular with families, Berrara Creek becomes a beautiful lagoon that leads to the beach. Put your canoe in and paddle upstream, go swimming or fishing.
    • Monument Beach picnic area Set in a forest behind the beach, Monument Beach picnic area is a quiet base from which to take a short walk and learn about the history of the area.

    Maritime monument

    Monument Beach ride from Bendalong, Conjola National Park. Photo: Michael Van Ewijk

    In 1870, 12 men lost their lives when the clipper Walter Hood struck rocks off the coast between Bendalong and Berrara. A monument, erected in 1927, marks the burial site of the drowned captain and crew. it is a short walk from the Monument Beach picnic area.

    • Monument Beach picnic area Set in a forest behind the beach, Monument Beach picnic area is a quiet base from which to take a short walk and learn about the history of the area.
    • Nerindillah Lagoon walking track The short and easy Nerindillah Lagoon walking track takes in Monument Beach, historic heritage including the Walter Hood monument, and is great for birdwatching.

    Education resources (1)

    Bournda Lagoon, Bournda National Park. Photo: John Spencer