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Managing Our Natural Resources
Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment

Home > Managing Our Natural Resources > Geoconservation > Tasmanian Geoconservation Database

Tasmanian Geoconservation Database

About the Geoconservation Database
Accessing the Tasmanian Geoconservation Database
Significance and Sensitivity of Listed Sites
Important Note about the Database
Listing Process
Tasmanian Geoconservation Database Reference Group
Examples of Geoconservation Sites
Contact for Further Information
Pachydermal weathering in sandstone
Pachydermal weathering in sandstone
Some sedimentary rock types weather to an ‘elephant skin’ pattern. This particular site is referred to in a scientific paper that describes rocks on Mars, where similar features have been reported.
Photograph: Nathan Duhig

About the Tasmanian Geoconservation Database (TGD)

The Tasmanian Geoconservation Database (TGD) is a source of information about earth science features, systems and processes of conservation significance in the State of Tasmania.

The database is a resource for anyone with an interest in conservation and the environment. However, the principal aim is to make information on sites of geoconservation significance available to land managers, in order to assist them manage these values.

Being aware of a listed site can assist parties involved in works or developments to plan their activities. This may involve measures to avoid, minimise or mitigate impacts to geoconservation values.

More than a thousand sites are currently listed. These range in scale from individual rock outcrops and cuttings that expose important geological sections, to landscape-scale features that illustrate the diversity of Tasmania’s geomorphic features and processes. Many of the sites are very robust and unlikely to be affected by human activities; others are highly sensitive to disturbance and require careful management. (See information on significance and site sensitivity.)

Accessing the Database

The TGD is available on the web, where it can be searched as a map-based tool via the Tasmanian Government’s LIST and Natural Values Atlas websites.

The TGD can be accessed in two ways:

1. On the LIST

The TGD is now a layer on the LIST.
1. Go to the LIST are now leaving our site. DPIPWE is not responsible for the content of the web site to which you are going. The link does not constitute any form of endorsement
2. Click LISTmapYou are now leaving our site. DPIPWE is not responsible for the content of the web site to which you are going. The link does not constitute any form of endorsement
3. Select Theme: Other
4. Choose base layers eg. 1:25000 Map Series
5. Choose quick link eg. Entire State (map should appear)
6. Click Manage Layers
7. Set Available Categories on the pull down menu to Natural Environment - Geoconservation
8. Use the arrows to select and transfer Geoconservation Sites from the Available Layers box to the Displayed Layers box.
9. Click Apply if geoconservation sites are not plotted off the map zoom in to the area of interest until they appear.
10. To get site attributes highlight Geoconservation Sites in the Layers box and then click on the poly using the information tool.

2. On the Natural Values Atlas

The Natural Values Atlas provides easy-to-use web access into comprehensive natural values information, including the Tasmanian Geoconservation Database.

Go to are now leaving our site. DPIPWE is not responsible for the content of the web site to which you are going. The link does not constitute any form of endorsement and see the New User section to download an Access Form to register and submit to request access to the site. When access is granted click on the Geodiversity tab then Geosite Search. NVA geosites may then be searched for according to a range of text attributes. You may have to scroll down to see all of the search form and find the search button. Click 'Search' and scroll down to see a list of results.

Alternatively, NVA geosites may be searched for by spatial criteria. On the search form click the map icon next to the 'Search Area' box. This will open the map viewer. Zoom in using the magnifier tool then use the polygon tool (indicated by a rectangle) to draw an outline of your area of interest. Double click to close the polygon then click the green tick to return to the NVA and load your polygon as a spatial search term. Click 'Search' and scroll down to see a list of results.

When search results are returned you can use the blue 'Details' buttons to explore several levels of site attributes. When viewing site attributes clicking on the small map icon next to the 'Position (GDA94)' box will launch a map viewer in a separate window.

From the search results some standardised reports can be generated by checking either 'Comprehensive' or 'Assessment' and then clicking 'Request Reports'.


In 1979 the Geological Society of Australia published a report Geological Monuments of Tasmania – a descriptive list of fifty or so geological features and landforms. This was a precursor of more detailed inventories by the Parks and Wildlife Service and the (then) Forestry Commission from the 1990s onwards. These and other sources were compiled as a single digital dataset as part of National Estate component of the 1997 Commonwealth-Tasmania Regional Forest Agreement.

Tasmanian Geoconservation Database Reference Group

In 1999, the Department commenced active management of the geoconservation database. An expert panel, the Tasmanian Geoconservation Database Reference Group, was convened to assess site nominations and amendments. This panel brings together expertise in different aspects of the earth sciences. The current members include scientists from the University of Tasmania, industry and government departments. (See: Tasmanian Geoconservation Database Reference Group - Terms of Reference.)
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The TGD was published on the LIST in 2006 and is updated annually (see Listing Process).

Examples of Geoconservation Sites

Pedder River Estuary
Pachydermal weathering in sandstone
Karstic river capture at Vanishing Falls
Gardiner Point Precambrian ripples
Du Cane Range glaciated terrain
Blanket bog peat soil
Pedra Branca phosphatic flowstone
Interview River transgressive sand sheets
Maria Island fossil beds
Birchs Inlet terraces

Contact for Further Information

Geoconservation Officer
Earth Science Section
Land Conservation Branch
Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment
GPO Box 44, Hobart, 7001
Phone: 03 6233 6455
Fax: 03 6233 3477

Go to top of pageDepartment switchboard:  1300 368 550 (local call cost within Australia)

Geoconservation Sites & Listing Process 
Tasmania Online

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This page - - was last published on 4 July 2013 by the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment. Questions concerning its content can be sent to Internet Coordinator by using the feedback form, by mail to GPO Box 44, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia 7001, or by telephone.

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