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Nilpena Ediacara National Park

Nilpena Ediacara National Park

Nilpena Ediacara National Park – Claim a Piece of National Heritage Treasure

Discovered at historic Nilpena station in SA’s Northern Flinders Ranges, fascinating seafloor fossil imprints continue to give local and international researchers a ground-breaking (in both senses) glimpse into the dawn of animal life.

It’s now known that around half a billion years ago, some of these complex multicellular biotas were able to move over the seabed of their own volition. Some could also sexually reproduce. Their existence solves Charles Darwin’s Dilemma – ‘What came before the Cambrian?’ and prompted the definition of a new geological time period, the Ediacaran.

The long-term protection of these unique in-situ fossil beds was first secured in 2019 with the State Government’s purchase of a large proportion of the cattle station and the creation of Nilpena Ediacara National Park. It’s the only place in the world where visitors can view entire fossil communities on carefully excavated beds at a working research site.

At the non-profit Flinders Ranges Ediacara Foundation, our fundamental mission is to ensure that these precious precursors are recorded, conserved, and protected.

That’s where we hope you can come in – to support us with a much-appreciated donation, of whatever size, to make sure the site remains effectively stabilised and managed for generations to come.

Or think bigger – choose a special fossil bed and put your name on it.

Already eight of the more than 40 Nilpena Ediacara National Park fossil beds benefit from generous sponsorship by Foundation donors. They will be recognised at each location by special plaques.

Your donation is tax-deductible and can be spread over the three years of the bed stabilisation program currently underway.

Nilpena Ediacara National Park
Nilpena Ediacara National Park

Nilpena Ediacara National Park – A Life-Changing Tour Destination

Nilpena Ediacara National Park is not merely a place to visit; it’s a life-changing experience waiting to happen. It holds the key to the earliest complex animal life on Earth. It is the place where evidence of this historical emergence has been unearthed. If you’re a history, nature, or science enthusiast, this destination is a must-visit.

The fossils found within Flinders Ranges National Park offer a rare glimpse into a time over 500 million years ago, long before dinosaurs roamed the Earth. It provides a unique opportunity to understand the early stages of life on our planet.

The Role of The Flinders Ranges Ediacara Foundation

Established in 2018, this organisation has a crucial charter to protect the extraordinary Ediacaran fossils found within the Flinders Ranges. Our dedication ensures the preservation and accessibility of these invaluable relics for the benefit of future generations.

The Flinders Ranges Ediacara Foundation was founded with a clear purpose in mind – safeguarding the legacy of Earth’s earliest life forms. We also aspire to inspire future generations and ensure the continuation of critical paleontological research. To ensure that our actions are globally informed and future-focused, our board consists of international experts spanning various domains, including palaeontology, marketing, media, business innovation, finance, and law.

Nilpena Ediacara National Park

Nilpena Ediacara National Park represents a fusion of natural beauty, scientific importance, and historical intrigue. It’s a destination that promises to leave an indelible mark on all who venture into its unique landscape.



Isn’t it extraordinary to think that this whole area used to be a shallow protected ocean not unlike the Spencer Gulf today.

Ian HughesIan Hughes - Passionate Supporter

The site is awesome. It’s amazing to see life, millions of years old, in perfect fossilised condition

Students Danby and ElliotStudents Danby and Elliot - Passionate Supporters

It is difficult to comprehend that long before livestock roamed Nilpena, this marginal country was once underwater and home to array of ancient creatures marking the dawn of animal life.

Ross FargherRoss Fargher - Rancher & landowner of Nilpena cattle station



Your support and contribution will be critical in protecting this globally significant site in perpetuity – not just for South Australia or Australia but for everyone. By supporting the Flinders Ranges Ediacara Foundation, you’ll be helping to create an everlasting legacy, preserving one of the most significant pieces of the history of life on earth for now and for future generations.

Since its launch in March 2019, the Foundation has raised significant funds to allow for the State Government purchase of the land holding the fossil beds, to assist with the protection of the fossils and to support the transformation of the historic Blacksmith’s Shop into an immersive Ediacaran interpretive centre.

The next critical step is to work closely with the South Australian State Government to ensure the effective preservation and interpretation of the site and the fossils it contains. To support this ongoing vision for the future of the Nilpena site, we are seeking funding through personal donations, bequests and corporate contributions.