Site description (2008 baseline):

Site location and context
The Douglas-Apsley IBA is identical to Douglas-Apsley National Park, which is located on the eastern coast of Tasmania between Bicheno and St Marys. It comprises the largest area of protected dry sclerophyll forest in Tasmania, spanning 25 km from north to south and up to 8 km from west to east. The forest is situated on a dolerite-capped plateau intersected by river gorges, including the catchments of the Douglas and Apsley Rivers and Denison Rivulet. The climate is relatively dry and mild with more rainfall falling in higher-altitude areas to the north of the IBA. The mean rainfall declines from 1279 mm per annum in the north-east to 760 mm per annum at Bicheno in the south.

Key biodiversity
The IBA supports more than 65 species of birds and provides important habitat for the Tasmanian subspecies of the Wedge-tailed Eagle, which is listed as threatened under federal and Tasmanian state government legislation, Spotted Quail-thrush and Painted Button-quail (Parks and Wildlife Service 1993). The endangered Swift Parrot passes through the IBA on migration between Tasmania and mainland Australia, and is likely to be an occasional breeding visitor depending on flowering conditions in the core breeding range to the south of the IBA.

Non-bird biodiversity: Some studies have been undertaken on the local fauna but further research is needed. The IBA may support populations of the Tasmanian Bettong, two species of pygmy possum (Cercartetus nanus nanus and Cercartetus lepidus), Spot-tailed Quoll, Bennett's Wallaby, Red-bellied Pademelon and Long-nosed Potoroo. Reptiles recorded within the IBA include Tiger Snake, Ocellated Skink and White-lipped Whip Snake. The rare Southern Grayling is found in the Douglas River and may be the last stronghold for the species in Tasmania. The Douglas-Apsley IBA supports populations of a number of endemic plant species including Epacris limbata, Doodia media, Pultenaea selaginoides and Telopea truncata (Parks and Wildlife Service 1993).

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Monitor invasive species, especially the root-rot fungus Phytophthora cinnamomi.

Protected areas
Douglas-Apsley National Park is the IBA.

Land ownership
Douglas-Apsley National Park is managed by the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service. Most is owned by the State but some is privately owned by the Wilderness Society (Parks and Wildlife Service 1993).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Important Bird Area factsheet: Douglas-Apsley. Downloaded from on 26/02/2024.