Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve is one of several reserves in the
lower Adelaide River catchment that provide havens for wildlife in
Darwin's developing rural fringe. It is one of the few wetland systems
accessible to visitors all year round. Fogg Dam is a remnant of early
attempts to produce rice on the Adelaide River flood plains.
Today it provides an important refuge for wildlife. Observation bays
and towers allow close inspection of the area. Note: Saltwater
Crocodiles move into the Fogg Dam area during the wet season when the
reserve is inaccessible by people, although by the time the dry season
arrives usually only a few crocodiles remain in the wetlands, as they
prefer the rivers and billabongs. Care should still be taken.
This is a great place to visit - if possible, go early in the
morning (sunrise if you can) or late in the afternoon and you will see
so many birds and animal life - crocodile, monitors, cranes, herons,
kingfishers and many other birds too numerous to mention. About half an
hour before sunrise, as soft light precedes the colourful sunrise, the
dawn chorus of birds begins – an unforgettable experience! How
captivating and serene it is to experience such a vast landscape full
of beautiful wildlife as far as the eyes can see, where you can sit for
hours watching as the scenery changes before your eyes. A great wetland
without the distance of Kakadu - this is a well kept secret. Be sure to
take your camera as you never know what wonderful bird life you will
A visit to Window on the Wetlands can be combined with visits to
nearby Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve and the Mary River National Park
(proposed). Window on the Wetlands Visitor Centre is perched on
Beatrice Hill, one of the highest points on the Adelaide River
floodplain. It provides an introduction to the northern coastal
wetlands. There are interactive displays about the ecological processes
that occur in the wetlands, the seasonal changes and the abundant
The Dam Wall Walk is the best place to view waterbirds. It can be
hot in the middle of the day. Two viewing platforms provide shade and
information about bird identification. Enjoy the water lilies along the
Length: 2.2km return Time: 45 minutes Grade: easy and wheelchair accessible.
Woodlands to Waterlily Walk goes from the corner of the car park
through forests that fringe the floodplains to a boardwalk that takes
you onto the dam and two viewing platforms.
Length: 2.2km return Time: 45 minutes Grade: easy.
Monsoon Rainforest Walk begins past the toilet block on the opposite
side of the road to the car park and winds through a variety of
habitats, including monsoon forest, paperbark forest and onto
floodplain. The boardwalks are currently being replaced and it is not
expected to be open until late 2007 or early 2008.
Length: 3.6km Time: 2 hours Grade: easy
Pandanus Lookout on the far, western side of the dam wall has two
stories and gives sweeping views across the floodplain. It’s
great for sunrise or sunset picnics. Parking is available.
Night Walks are provided by rangers during the dry season to allow
visitors to experience the diversity of nocturnal wildlife around the
dam. It’s recommended you bring insect repellent and a torch.
Location: 70 km east of Darwin along the Arnhem Highway. Free admission.