Cygnets make themselves at home at Djirda Miya

Media Release 19 September 2023
South Perth Foreshore

Djirda Miya on the South Perth Foreshore is now home to seven new black swan nesting sites which are providing vital habitat for a colony of swans and their cygnets.

The successful breeding season has been welcomed by the City of South Perth Mayor Greg Milner, who said the City’s natural areas team had been keeping a close eye on the new arrivals and monitoring their progress.

“It is immensely satisfying to see Djirda Miya providing improved habitat for native waterbirds while providing a retreat for bird watching, breeding, ecology, and learning,” he said.

“More than 20 years on from the state government’s Bringing Back the Swans report, it’s amazing to see that after all of the hard work, lobbying and collaboration that the swans are actually coming back.”

Djirda Miya is a joint project between the City of South Perth and the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA). The City successfully secured over $883,000 in funding from the DBCA’s Riverbank Program to support the $1.9 million project.

Djirda Miya, the island, was constructed along with two vegetated headlands, a beach and a planted rock revetment. These works are located east of Coode Street on South Perth Foreshore.

As part of an ongoing effort to protect wildlife around Djirda Miya, the island is surrounded by a 5m exclusion zone to prevent fishing and swimmers and watercraft landing on the island. 

Visitors to the area are reminded to be mindful of the swans and cygnets and keep their distance so as not to disturb wildlife. Path markings and signage are in place to encourage cyclists and scooter riders to reduce their speed and be more aware of wildlife crossing. Dog owners must always keep their dogs on leads and maintain effective control to prevent conflict with other dogs, wildlife and people.

Photographers are also advised to follow DBCA's wildlife photography guidelines to avoid disturbance of the habitat.  

An official opening ceremony for Djirda Miya was held on Thursday 30 September 2021 and the Whadjuk Noongar name of the habitat island was announced. The river is a sacred place for Noongar people and with respect to the traditional custodians of this land, the Black Swan Habitat Island has been named Djirda Miya, meaning ‘home of the birds’.

The Djirda Miya project is located at Node 7: The Lakes area of South Perth Foreshore that sits east of Coode Street. This area contains a series of interconnected constructed lakes – Hurlingham Lake, Douglas Lake and Lake Tondut.

The project is one of the actions of the City’s South Perth Foreshore Strategy and Management Plan (SPF Plan) which identifies Node 7: The Lakes as an area to be developed as a water-based, ecologically focused precinct, restored, expanded and integrated into its surroundings. The SPF Plan also identifies the area as a location to be developed for bird breeding.