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Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries

Abrolhos Islands

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The Houtman Abrolhos is an archipelago of 210 islands, islets and rocks surrounded by coral reef located off the mid-west coast of Western Australia. There are three main island groups:

  • Wallabi Group (including North Island);
  • Easter Group; and
  • Pelsaert (or Southern) Group.

The Abrolhos extend more than 100 km from north to south. The Geelvink Channel, which separates the Abrolhos from the mainland, is between 60 and 80 km wide.

The marine and terrestrial environment of the Abrolhos is unique and supports outstanding natural, cultural heritage, fishing and recreation values. Visitors come from far and wide to enjoy the remoteness and beauty of this world-class destination and to undertake a range of fishing and nature-based activities.

In accordance with a State Government initiative, the Houtman Abrolhos Islands National Park​ was created in July 2019. The national park is vested with the Conservation and Parks Commission and managed by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA). 

The remaining terrestrial area, currently occupied by commercial rock lobster fishers and aquaculture operators, is a Class A Reserve managed by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) on behalf of the Minister for Fisheries for the purposes of conservation, tourism, fishing and aquaculture.

The state waters surrounding the Abrolhos Islands have special status as a gazetted fish habitat protection area (FHPA) and are also managed by DPIRD. The FHPA is associated with exceptional marine biodiversity and remarkable maritime heritage values. 

New management plans have recently been prepared for the Abrolhos and can be viewed on our management page​.

The Abrolhos is home to a diverse and unique range of plants and animals, both on land and in the water. Activities at the Abrolhos include:

Important information about visiting the Abrolhos can be found on our visitor information page​.

The Abrolhos is associated with the earliest periods of European history in Australia.​ There are important historical shipwrecks in Abrolhos waters dating back to the doomed Batavia 1629, with the remnants of survivors’ camps on the islands themselves.

Exploring the Houtman Abrolhos Islands provides further background information.​

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Last modified: 3/11/2022 9:33 AM

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