Burrewarra Point headland walk

Burrewarra Point headland walk

Burrewarra Point is a prominent headland about fifteen kms south of Batemans Bay
on the south coast of NSW (Map reference 8926-3N Mogo KF500310). The western
half of the headland has been developed for housing since the early 1960’s and
comprises part of the hamlet of Guerilla Bay. The eastern half of the headland is
public reserve administered by Eurobodalla Shire Council.
The three open shell middens seen in the course of this study provide evidence that
the Point has been frequented by Aboriginal people. These middens are believed to be
2000 to 3000 years old and are recorded in the archeological register held by the NSW
National Parks and Wildlife Service (Jill Whiter personal communication).
During the Second World War a radar unit was based on the point and two concrete structures
used in these operations remain. In the 1950’s and 60’s cattle grazed on the open
easterly end of the Point and in the early 1970’s a small unattended lighthouse was
constructed at the easterly point beside the trig. All these human activities caused
disturbance of the existing vegetation and remnants of ground disturbance are still
visible. Responsibility for the area passed to the Shire from the State Government in
the mid 1990’s.
Today the original vehicular track servicing the lighthouse has largely
regenerated and forms a very popular walking track which continues past the
lighthouse round the eastern and southern edges of the Point giving spectacular
coastal views. Using this track it is possible to return to the reserve carpark or
continue on in the reserve between the houses and the southern cliff edge to Barlings
Beach.
In 1993, Burrewarra Point along with the adjacent areas was listed on the
National Heritage register on account of the diversity of vegetation types present and
the ensuing diversity of wildlife this vegetation supports, as well as the aesthetic
scenic values of the area.
This 2005-6 vegetation survey was carried out in response to a request from some
members of the Guerilla Bay community to the NSW Rural Fire Service to carry out
controlled burns on the Point, both for the ecological advantage to the vegetation and
to render the hamlet safer from wildlife. The community is divided as to the wisdom
of this action and we hope that experts in the field of fire ecology may be able to use
this survey as the basis for advice. In any case, even if the Point is burned this study
will serve as a base for research into the effects of such burning.
In this study seven slightly different vegetation types are identified and their
boundaries mapped. Photographs are used to illustrate the vegetation types.
The photographic record contains more pictures than have been included in this report and
these areas will be regularly rephotographed to document vegetation changes. Species
lists for each of the vegetation types and an alphabetical list of all species identified
on Burrewarra Point have been compiled.