Butterfly Conservation SA wishes to express its extreme disappointment in the process and decision by the State Government to support the handover of a substantial area of the South Parklands known as Mirnu Wirra/Park 21 West.
The biodiversity and amenity that is found in this park is something to behold and will be lost forever if it is occupied by buildings, paved drives, horse paddocks and training tracks.
We firmly believe that the parklands that underpin the National Park City status, that Adelaide was recently awarded, will be significantly eroded and put that status at risk.
Not only is Mirnu Wirra/Park 21 West the home of recorded populations of the rare Chequered Copper (Lucia limbaria) butterfly, but it has the most biodiverse flora and fauna species in all of the Adelaide Parklands. This butterfly species has recently been identified as one of 3 butterfly species that Green Adelaide uses to focus community effort on protecting and enhancing our environment.
By locating SA Police’s Mounted Operations Unit at Mirnu Wirra/Park 21 West, the state government is continuing to erode and alienate large sections of parklands from public use, ultimately contributing to and exacerbating the disconnect with Nature that leads to poor health outcomes in the wider community, as demonstrated by many studies relating to community and individual wellbeing.
We believe that the SAPOL Mounted Operations Unit should be located in other sites close to Adelaide, such as the recently cleared SA Brewing site on Port Road in Thebarton, which the SA Government could purchase from the owners, thus maintaining the close proximity to Adelaide as required by SAPOL, where the Mounted Operations Unit can develop without prejudicing the important parklands.
To learn more about the recent assisted recovery Lucia limbaria (Chequered Copper ) butterfly and how it is gathering international attention through the arts, read more here.
For more understanding of the risk to biodiversity, read this paper from Trees for Life: Mirnu Wirra briefing paper
To see the location of Mirnu Wirra (Park 21W or Golden Wattle Park), one of Adelaide’s hidden biodiversity treasure, download the Mirnu Wirra Biodiversity Map.
We hope you can be there tomorrow at 11:30 to show your belief in the value of this subtle but complex location.