Flinders Baudin Centre, Kangaroo Island
The Flinders-Baudin Research Centre is within Flinders Chase National Park and about 100m east of South Australian Government's Flinders Chase Visitor Centre at Rocky River.
Flinders Chase National Park is on the Western end of Kangaroo Island and supports extensive areas of mallee-heath and woodlands, total areas of more 32,000ha. Flinders Chase is a popular tourist destination because of its spectacular coastline - Remarkable Rocks and Admirals Arch. Opportunities for viewing wildlife from New Zealand fur seals at Cape du Couedic to echidnas, kangaroos, wallabies and Cape Barren geese, as well as koalas which were introduced to Kangaroo Island in the 1920s. The park boasts the only streams in South Australia where the catchment is free from agriculture.
- A Brief History
The former Department of Zoology at the University of Adelaide established a modest field station at Rocky River in Flinders Chase National Park in the 1960's.
Towards the end of the 1990's, State Government proposed to redevelop the Rocky River Precinct and the University was required to demolish the old facility but given an opportunity to replace it with a modern facility.
The Department of Zoology then set about raising funds from external sponsors to build the new Flinders-Baudin Research Facility. This included generous support from international water companies such as Thames Water and Veolia, the French company Thales, as well as SA Water and several South Australian Government Departments.
The facility was opened in February 2004 by Dick Smith AO.
- Research at Flinders-Baudin
There has been a long history of research based at the field station in Kangaroo Island, much of this focused on the ecology and ecological physiology of vertebrates including mammals (koalas, tammar wallabies, echidnas, brush-tailed possums, fur seals and platypus); birds (Cape Barren geese, brush turkeys, stone curlews) and reptiles (goannas). Other research includes studies on the successional pattern to recovery of the vegetation and fungi post-fire, pollination of native plants, studies on bush birds (honeyeaters) and interactions between native pollinators and introduced honeybees. Other work has included documenting the ecological characteristics and health of the intermittent streams within the park and studies on fish associated with the estuaries of these streams.
The Flinders-Baudin Research Centre is used for meetings and training workshops by park rangers, a variety of local and interstate Universities for undergraduate and postgraduate training, various State government agencies, by school groups and other community groups.
The Research Centre consists of a main meeting room or dining room, a large kitchen, a separate laboratory, an ablutions block and 5 bunkrooms each with two bunks giving the centre the capacity to sleep 20 people comfortably.
- Enquiries and Maintenance