Shark Bay ~ On The List

Round Australia Road Trip #12

To qualify for World Heritage listing a place must meet at least one of ten selection criteria determined by UNESCO. Shark Bay World Heritage Area, on the mid north coast of Western Australia, is one of only 16 places in the world to meet four criteria and was inscribed on the list in 1991.

The criteria are

  • superlative natural phenomena or areas of exceptional natural beauty and aesthetic importance;
Shark Bay viewed from a lookout on the NW Coastal HIghway

Shark Bay viewed from a lookout on the NW Coastal Highway

View from Eagle Bluff

View from Eagle Bluff

Road through Francois Peron National Park

Road through Francois Peron National Park

  • outstanding examples representing major stages of earth’s history, including the record of life, significant on-going geological processes in the development of landforms, or significant geomorphic or physiographic features;
3000 year old Stromatolites, living fossils and the simplest life on Earth

3000 year old Stromatolites. These are living fossils and the simplest form of life on Earth, growing at a rate of 0.4 mm each year.

Shell Beach, composed of tiny cockle shells up to 10 metres deep, i km wide and 120 km long.

Shell Beach, composed of tiny Hamelin Cockle shells layered up to 10 metres deep. The beach is 1 km wide and 120 km long.

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  • outstanding examples representing significant on-going ecological and biological processes in the evolution and development of terrestrial, fresh water, coastal and marine ecosystems and communities of plants and animals;
Eagle Bluff. The dark patches of water indicate seagrass banks, largest in the world and home to an eighth of the world's population of dugongs.

Eagle Bluff. The dark patches of water indicate the largest seagrass banks in the world, home to an eighth of the world’s population of dugongs.

  • important and significant natural habitats for in-situ conservation of biological diversity, including those containing threatened species of outstanding universal value from the point of view of science or conservation.
Francois Peron National Park

Francois Peron National Park. Five critically endangered mammals are protected in the park. Four of these are found nowhere else in the world.

820 species of plant, including springtime wildflowers grow here.

820 species of plant, including endemic springtime wildflowers grow here.

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15 thoughts on “Shark Bay ~ On The List

  1. 120km beach, 820 species of plants – the mind boggles! This looks so lovely. I want to go there. I really hope it is protected from the greedy capitalists destroying the land for minerals and gas/oil.

    • It is quite isolated. It’s 300 km from the nearest northern town and 400 km from the nearest southern town. But it is well worth the effort to get there and to do it justice you need to stay a few days. I’m glad you enjoyed this post.

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