Kinlyside Nature Reserve





Kinlyside Nature Reserve, part of Canberra Nature Park, is a 228 hectare reserve located in the north-west of the ACT.

The reserve forms part of a 2000 hectare area of critically endangered Yellow Box-Blakely’s Red Gum Grassy Woodland in the northern ACT. It provides important wildlife habitat and a wildlife movement corridor through to the Majura Valley and into NSW.

Stock grazing helps to maintain habitat suitable for critically endangered Golden Sun Moth (Synemon plana) and the vulnerable Pink-tailed Worm Lizard (Aprasia parapulchella).


Kinlyside is a closed reserve (under the Nature Conservation Act 2014) and also a rural lease. Public access is not permitted and dogs are prohibited.



Cultural Landscape – A continuing connection to country

Aboriginal people lived in and managed the landscape in this region for thousands of years and have maintained a connection to the land to the present day. Generations of Aboriginal people have cared for Country and have been sustained, physically and spiritually, through their relationship with the land, waterways and cosmology.

Traditional Custodians have actively managed the landscape through activities such ‘fire stick farming’ and selectively cultivating certain plants, which created the landscapes first seen by explorers and pastoral settlers.

Continuation of knowledge

Traditionally, the local Ngunnawal people shared knowledge and responsibility for Caring for Country. Today, this cultural knowledge continues to be passed down to younger generations and has a role to play in the management of ACT reserves.

Aboriginal community organisations and the Murumbung Rangers in the ACT Parks and Conservation Service run cultural activities to educate the wider community about the cultural landscape, heritage values and land conservation practices.

Heritage sites

Kinlyside protects 30 registered Aboriginal heritage sites including stone artefacts, occurring individually and in small scatters on the surface, and several scarred trees, where bark and timber were once removed for cultural use. Other parts of the reserve are likely to contain further Aboriginal heritage sites.

These sites are of cultural significance to Traditional Custodians, linking generations of Aboriginal people over time, and they are also of archaeological significance as an important source of information on the history of the reserve and the ACT region.

All Aboriginal places and objects in the ACT are protected under the Heritage Act 2004 and must not be disturbed. Anyone finding an (unregistered) Aboriginal object or place has an obligation to report it to the Heritage Council.

Historic Heritage

European settlement of the Gungahlin region dates from the 1850s, when localised land clearing began in the valleys. There was some cropping on alluvial flats, but stock grazing has been the main rural activity.



Vegetation communities and associations

Gungahlin’s box-gum woodlands are amongst the biggest, best connected and most diverse patches of their vegetation type remaining anywhere. About three quarters of Kinlyside supports the critically endangered White Box-Yellow Box-Blakely’s Red Gum Grassy Woodland and Derived Native Grasslands.


Kinlyside vegetation is of moderate to high diversity and is in good condition. It supports a significant population of the Forest Sun Orchid (Thelymitra arenaria) and regionally rare species including Milkmaids (Burchardia umbellate), Pale Flax Lily (Dianella longifolia) and Little Dumpies (Diplodium truncatum)


The size and connectivity of woodland across Gungahlin means that Kinlyside is important for both threatened and declining woodland birds including Dusky Woodswallow (Artamus cyanopterus), Varied Sittella (Daphoenositta chrysoptera), Flame Robin (Petroica phoenicea), Scarlet Robin (Petroica boodang), Southern Whiteface (Aphelocephala leucopsis), Speckled Warbler (Pyrrholaemus sagittatus), Little Eagle (Hieraaetus morphnoides), Diamond Firetail (Stagonopleura guttata) and White-winged Triller (Lalage sueurii).

Kinlyside is thought to protect one or possibly two territories of the vulnerable Hooded Robin (Melanodryas cucullata).

The partial clearing of trees within parts of Kinlyside has created secondary grassland which provides suitable habitat for the critically endangered Golden Sun Moth (Synemon plana) and the vulnerable Pink-tailed Worm Lizard (Aprasia parapulchella) is also found in the reserve.

Environmental Offset Area

Kinlyside Nature Reserve is an environmental offset area.



About Canberra Nature Park

Canberra Nature Park is made up of 38 nature reserves ranging from bushland hills to some of the best examples of lowland native grassland and endangered ecological community of Yellow Box-Red Gum Grassy Woodland left in Australia. The ACT Parks and Conservation Service is responsible for managing Canberra Nature Park. For more information visit the Canberra Nature Park webpage.


The management of Canberra Nature Park is greatly assisted by a group of volunteers called ParkCare. ParkCare volunteers undertake a variety of activities including seed collection, plant propagation, tree planting, weed removal, erosion control, vegetation mapping and recording, water quality monitoring, raising community awareness and the maintenance and restoration of heritage places.

For more information visit ParkCare

Caring for Ngunnawal Country

The ACT Government acknowledges the Ngunnawal people as Traditional Custodians of the Canberra region, and their continuing sense of responsibility to preserve the spirit and stories of their ancestors throughout the landscape. Cultural values ;are also living and current, as much as an appreciation of the past. For more information visit Caring for Ngunnawal Country.

Canberra Nature Map

Report rare and endangered plant sightings via the Canberra Nature Map.


For more information on heritage tracks, visit Canberra Tracks which is a network of heritage signage that incorporates six self-drive routes leading to many of Canberra’s historic sites.

Prescribed burns

The ACT Parks and Conservation Service conducts prescribed burns throughout Canberra Nature Park.

More information and feedback

For more information or to provide feedback, contact Access Canberra on 13 22 81 or complete an online feedback form.