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The Lake Clifton Festival, a Natural Success

1 December 2017…The Lake Clifton Festival attracted visitors from near and far to celebrate the natural wonders of the area. Held at Cape Bouvard Winery and with Yalgorup National Park as the backdrop, it was the perfect setting to showcase the area’s unique attractions in and around Lake Clifton.

Lake Clifton is one of the most valuable natural assets of the Peel region and provides habitat for numerous migratory and resident shorebird species. The lake is also home to living Thrombolites; a striking population of calcareous rock-like structures in the lake formed by microbial colonies over thousands of years. The 26,500 hectare Peel-Yalgorup wetland system, including Lake Clifton and other lakes in the Yalgorup National Park, are designated wetlands of international importance under the Ramsar Convention (Ramsar Site 482).

In hosting the festival, the City of Mandurah and Peel-Harvey Catchment Council were able to highlight the significance and value of Lake Clifton, entice new visitors to the area, bring the local community together and announce future events designed to promote and protect this very special area. The festival was well received with over 150 visitors who enjoyed free activities such as Noongar cultural tours, bird talks, possum and wildflower workshops and the Land for Wildlife interactive stall.

Ornithologist, Bill Rutherford, was on hand to talk about the many ways the local community can get involved in bird-watching. Bill shared his knowledge on how to use bird-watching equipment and talked about bird species that migrate from Siberia and Asia each year to feed on the mudflats of the Peel-Yalgorup Wetland.

George and Leanne Walley, from Mandjoogoordap Dreaming, led guided cultural tours to the Thrombolites (Woggaal’s Noorook) of Lake Clifton. The Walk and Talk tours took visitors on “a journey with George” discovering the cultural significance of Lake Clifton whilst learning about life on country, bush medicine and local dreamtime stories.

The PHCC Land for Wildlife stall offered kids the chance to build a Land for Wildlife model, transforming an empty paddock model into a wildlife habitat for crazy critter creations. The Land for Wildlife stall was a great opportunity to promote the area’s new PHCC Land for Wildlife program funded by the City of Mandurah and Shire of Waroona.

The City of Mandurah Mayor, Rhys Williams said the Lake Clifton Festival was a fantastic way to bring the local community together to celebrate the iconic and beautiful water body of Lake Clifton and its surroundings, “We know our environment is so important and this area is truly special.  It’s steeped in dreamtime mythology and home to the largest lake-bound thrombolite reef in the southern hemisphere which is recognised under the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Significance,” he said.

PHCC Chair, Andy Gulliver was delighted with the efforts of the City of Mandurah and PHCC in bringing the festival to fruition, “It was great to see this festival bring together residents and environmental and community groups, providing them with an opportunity to exchange stories, share information and work together to help protect the lake and its environment.”

The Lake Clifton Festival is the first of many activities planned in the Lake Clifton Catchment. The City of Mandurah and PHCC will continue to work on a range of events and activities over the coming spring and summer months including the Bird and Wildflower ‘Walk and Talks’ and the very popular Night Stalks.

For more information please visit the Peel-Harvey Catchment Council website at


This project is supported by funding from the Western Australian Government’s State NRM Program and The Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.


Media Contact:  Jane O’Malley, Chief Executive Officer, Peel-Harvey Catchment Council,, (08) 6369 8800

We acknowledge the Noongar people as Traditional Custodians of this land and pay our respects to all Elders past and present



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2012 Western Australian Environment Awards Winner