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Swan Bay

Churchill Island Marine National Park

Located between Rhyll and Surf Beach on the eastern shores of Phillip Island, Swan Bay and the Churchill Island Marine National Park extends to the north point of Churchill Island and along the island’s western coast to the San Remo Bridge.

It is a protected marine national park that encompasses 670-hectares (1,700-acre) of many habitats, which includes mangroves, sheltered intertidal mudflats, seagrass beds, soft subtidal sediments and rocky intertidal shores.

Churchill Island Marine National Park, Swan Bay, Rhyll, Phillip Island VIC

It is an important roosting and feeding area for migratory waders; especially whimbrels and bar-tailed godwits. Its seagrass habitats are also crucial for black swans and the many species of fish.

The Park is part of the Western Port RAMSAR site and is an important habitat for many species of bird. Therefore, it’s no surprise that bird watching is a popular activity within the Park. Many birds feed, roost and breed around the bay, so you may be able to spot the different birds that have migrated from around the world.

Canoeing is the perfect way to explore the mangrove areas and estuarine conditions. Yachting is also increasingly popular in the bay’s relatively calm and tranquil waters.

On calm days, snorkelling and diving among the seagrass meadows reveal a whole range of crustaceans, fish, and other marine animal species. So make sure you keep your eyes open for the pot-bellied seahorse and weedy sea dragon – Victoria’s marine emblem.

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