The Pilbara Inshore Islands Nature Reserves are mostly small, remote islands that are important breeding and resting places for migratory shorebirds, seabirds and marine turtles. Several threatened species rely on the islands as a refuge protected from disturbance or threats like introduced predators, light/noise pollution, wildfire and vehicles on beaches.
Four species of marine turtle (green, loggerhead, hawksbill and flatback) nest on inshore islands with major nesting beaches on the Muirons, Locker, Thevenard, Serrurier and Sholl Islands.
Around one million wedge-tailed shearwaters migrate to the area each year. They visit the islands (particularly the Muiron’s and Serrurier) from July onwards in order to prepare a burrow for nesting in when November arrives. During the day the adult birds are out feeding and return to their burrows every evening. Bird species that live on the islands all year round include the Beach Stone-curlew, Pied and Sooty Oystercatcher and Fairy Tern.
Worth protecting now, and into the future
A management plan is being prepared that will be open for public consultation during 2017/2018. Contact the Exmouth District Office on 9947 8000 for more information. We encourage low key passive nature appreciation activities on and around the islands, and are always keen to hear about your experiences and observations of both native and introduced species. Your help may mean that further introductions of non-native species are avoided.
Island biosecurity – prepare before you go
Introduced organisms pose a major threat to island ecosystems. You can help protect the islands by ensuring that when you visit you check your clothes and gear are clean of any soil, seeds, invertebrates (like ants) and vertebrates (like house mice or Asian house geckos). Especially check under boot laces, and in the corners of pockets of clothes and bags. It only takes a short time, and can mean all the difference to the protection of the species that rely on the Pilbara Islands.
Pilbara Inshore Islands lie between Exmouth and Cape Preston. You will need your own vessel. The winter tourist season is most popular, coinciding with the annual whale migration.
Camping is only permitted seasonally on South Muiron Island, within the Ningaloo Coast World Heritage Area. Contact the Exmouth District Office for further information and to arrange a permit. You will need to take all supplies and be experienced in open water boating. Note that camp fires are not permitted. Beach drift wood is used by ospreys and eagles for their winter nesting season.
Only day use is permitted on all other islands.