Arafura Swamp Indigenous Protected Area

Congratulations to the traditional owners of the Arafura Swamp on the announcement of your proposed Indigenous Protected Area.

Covering nearly 1.5 million hectares in northeast Arnhem Land, the Arafura Swamp IPA will contain nearly the entire Arafura swamp and it’s feeding rivers. The IPA centres around a vast tropical wooded wetland that has long been considered an area of exceptional conservation value and is listed as a Wetland of National Importance. The IPA also contains some the Northern Territory’s most extensive rainforests.

Gurruwiling Ranger, Marley Djanjirr, surveying the swamp area of the Arafura Swamp Indigenous Protected Area. Daniel Hartley-Allen. 

The rainforest and wetlands inside the Arafura IPA combine to support an outstanding array of wildlife including threatened animals such as the water mouse, northern quoll, Gouldian finch, northern brush-tailed phascogale, hooded parrot and the Arnhem shovel-nosed snake.


Many the traditional owners live on outstations on country, who maintain traditional practices looking after and using country. The country is also cared for by the Arafura Swamp Rangers who work to tackle feral animals and noxious weeds, reduce destructive wildfires and care for important cultural sites throughout their country.

The Arafura Swamp IPA will be cared for by 7 different ranger groups. Each with different rights and responsibilities to different parts of the IPA. Daniel Hartley-Allen. 

With the addition of the Arafura Swamp IPA, nearly all of the Arnhem Coast bioregion will be protected by Indigenous Protected Areas.