Australian Wetlands Database

Ramsar wetlands

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Logan Lagoon

Overview

Key facts and figures:

Date of listing:

16 November 1982

Logan Lagoon is one of three large estuarine lagoons which make up a coastal lagoon system along the south-east coast of Flinders Island,  Photo: DEWHA

Australian Ramsar site number:

4

Criteria: 

1, 2, 3, 4, 6

State/Territory:

Tasmania

Area:

2257 hectares

Drainage Division or IMCRA  region:

Tasmania

Wetland type: 

  • E - Sand, shingle or pebble shores; includes sand bars, spits and sandy islets; includes dune systems and humid dune slacks
  • H - Intertidal marshes; includes salt marshes, salt meadows, saltings, raised salt marshes; includes tidal brackish and freshwater marshes
  • J - Coastal brackish/saline lagoons; brackish to saline lagoons with at least one relatively narrow connection to the sea
  • N - Seasonal/intermittent/irregular rivers/streams/creeks
  • Ss - Seasonal/intermittent saline/brackish/alkaline marshes/pools
  • Tp - Permanent freshwater marshes/pools; ponds (below 8 ha), marshes and swamps on inorganic soils; with emergent vegetation water-logged for at least most of the growing season
  • Ts - Seasonal/intermittent freshwater marshes/pools on inorganic soils; includes sloughs, potholes, seasonally flooded meadows, sedge marshes
  • W - Shrub-dominated wetlands; shrub swamps, shrub-dominated freshwater marshes, shrub carr, alder thicket on inorganic soils

Key features of the site:

The Logan Lagoon Ramsar site is enclosed within the Logan Lagoon Conservation Area and is located on the south-east corner of Flinders Island in Bass Strait, Tasmania. The site is an excellent, regionally representative example of a coastal estuarine wetland system andincludes Logan, Syndicate and Wilsons Lagoons, Pot Boil Point and part of Planters Beach.

The catchment of Logan Lagoon is low lying, with the water table very close to the soil surface, and water flows into the lagoons mainly from groundwater. The water level in Logan Lagoon fluctuates seasonally with rainfall, generally being high during winter and spring and low during late summer and autumn. Only one small natural watercourse, Pot Boil Creek, flows directly into Logan Lagoon. In extended dry periods the lagoon dries out and water is only contained in the southern most section of the lagoon.

The dominant vegetation communities present within the site are saline aquatic herbland, saline sedgeland and rushland, succulent saline herbland, coastal grass and herbfield and Acacia longifolia coastal scrub.

When full, the lagoon provides feeding and resting habitat for a number of migratory waders including the Red-necked Stint, Common Greenshank, Eastern Curlew, Bar-tailed Godwit and Double-banded Plover. The wetland is an important part of the East Asian - Australasian Flyway, and twenty migratory bird species listed under internationally agreements use the site.

The Ramsar site is used for conservation, education, research, and recreation such as walking, sightseeing, bird watching, off-road vehicle driving and beach fishing.

Justification of the listing criteria:

The Logan Lagoon Ramsar site meets four of the nine criteria:

Criterion 1: The Logan Lagoon Ramsar site is in the Tasmanian Australian Drainage Division. It contains two sites listed on the Tasmanian Geoconservation Database; Logan Lagoon Holocene Shorelines and Planter Beach Coastal Barrier System. Logan Lagoon, with other lagoons and dunes in the area, provides a representative and outstanding example of the development of Holocene shorelines for the local region. Planter Beach Coastal Barrier System, partly within the site, is a representative and outstanding example of how offshore bars formed with Holocene sea level rise and barrier growth has enclosed the coast, forming large lagoons. Logan Lagoon is recognised as a wetland in near pristine condition.

Criterion 2: The nationally threatened Northern Leek Orchid occurs within the Logan Lagoon Ramsar Site. The nationally threatened subspecies of the Common Wombat (Bass Strait) also occurs on the site and is restricted to Flinders Island.

Criterion 3: Logan Lagoon supports species and communities threatened in the Tasmania Drainage Division, particularly Callitris rhomboidea forest and the Rayless Starwort. The site provides breeding habitat for two beach nesting shorebirds that are threatened in the region, the Fairy Tern and Little Tern.

Criterion 4: The Logan Lagoon Ramsar site is an important area for birds migrating between south-eastern Australia and Tasmania. The lagoon supports five migratory bird species, the Red-necked Stint, Curlew Sandpiper, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, Common Greenshank, and Little Tern. These species are also listed under migratory bird agreements with China, Japan and the Republic of Korea. Logan Lagoon is listed as an important site for the Curlew Sandpiper under the East Asian - Australasian Shorebird Site Network which links wetlands that are internationally important for shorebirds.

Criterion 6: The Logan Lagoon Ramsar site regularly supports 1 percent of the global or regional populations of: hooded plover, fairy Tern, musk duck, and chestnut teal (Wetlands International 2006),. This is based on survey data obtained from annual waterfowl counts and shorebird surveys carried out in 1998/1999 (Bryant 2002) and 2008 (Woehler 2008). Given the ephemeral nature of the lagoon, it is difficult to determine whether the site meets the Ramsar criteria for 'regular' use. However, existing information indicates that the site periodically supports 1 percent of the population of these species. It is likely that this criterion was met at designation and continues to be met at present.

Please see the More Information page for additional information on this Ramsar site and access to the Ramsar Information sheets and other associated site documents.