Wollongong at a Glance
Location and Area
Located 80 kilometres south of Sydney, Wollongong covers 715 square kilometres and occupies a narrow coastal strip bordered by the Royal National Park to the north, Lake Illawarra to the south, the Pacific Ocean to the east, and the Illawarra escarpment to the west.
ABS estimated resident population in 2015 as approximately 208,875. Population density is estimated as 292 persons per square kilometre.
Wollongong Long-term Averages
|Mean Max (°C)||25.6||25.6||24.5||22.5||20.0||17.6||17.0||18.3||20.3||22.1||22.9||25.0||21.8|
|Mean Min (°C)||17.9||18.2||16.7||14.2||11.8||9.4||8.3||8.8||10.6||12.6||14.4||16.5||13.3|
|Mean Rain (mm)||130.5||160.5||160.4||129.3||106.0||115.1||63.4||83.3||67.5||100.6||115.9||94.6||1329.2|
|Mean Rain Days||13.6||13.7||14.2||10.9||10.6||9.5||8.4||7.8||9.1||11.1||12.9||12.3||130.3|
For information about today's weather forecast see www.weatherzone.com.au/nsw/illawarra/wollongong
Flora and Fauna
Wollongong's natural environment is one of its greatest assets. The escarpment dominates the landscape of the area, rising abruptly from the sea to heights of over 300 metres. Its forested slopes provide a visually spectacular backdrop for Wollongong's suburbs and a valuable corridor for native flora and fauna.
The Wollongong area was found to contain habitat for at least 40 fauna species listed on the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act, 1995. The rainforests and moist eucalypt forests of the Escarpment are high quality habitat for protected and endangered species including the Stuttering Frog, Green and Golden Bell Frog, Australian Brush-turkey, Logrunner, Grey-headed Flying-fox, Highland's Forest-skink, Golden-crowned Snake, Broad-headed Snake, Mainland Tiger Snake, Sooty Owl, Swift Parrot, Pheasant Coucal, Red-browed Treecreeper, Regent Honeyeater, Eastern Bristlebird, Green Catbird, Grey Currawong, Platypus, Southern Brown Bandicoot, Greater Glider and Mountain Brushtail Possum (NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, 2002, Bioregional Assessment Study Part II, Fauna of the Illawarra Escarpment, Coastal Plain and Plateau).
The vegetation of the Illawarra Region is perhaps best known for the Rainforests. Illawarra Escarpment Subtropical Rainforest is the most luxuriant form of rainforest found in the LGA. The forest is tall, often with billowing emergent rainforest trees rising over 35 metres in height, above a dense subcanopy. Easily recognisable features are:
- A dense, closed forest canopy comprising sometimes large and buttressed rainforest species including Sassafras (Doryphora sassafras), Cabbage tree palm (Livistona australis), Lilly pilly (Acmena smithii), Giant stinging tree (Dendrocnide excelsa), Brown beech (Pennantia cunninghamii), Red cedar (Toona ciliata), large Fig trees (Ficus obliqua var. obliqua, Ficus rubiginosa) and Cryptocarya spp. (C. glaucescens and C. microneura).
- Predominance of rhizomatous fern species climbing on rocks, logs, lianes and tree trunks including Fragrant fern (Microsorum scandens) and Arthropteris tenella.
- An abundance of large woody vines or lianes and the presence of Pepper vine (Piper novaehollandiae) and Anchor vine (Palmeria scandens).
- Presence of epiphytes such as Birds nest fern (Asplenium australasicum) in the canopy and on rocks.
- The presence of shade dependant herbs and ferns such as Elatostema reticulatum var. reticulatum, Peperomia blanda var. floribunda and Jungle brake (Pteris umbrosa).
Example locations include Mount Keira Scout Camp; Brokers Nose, Corrimal; Scarborough rainforest; Gibson track, Austinmer; Calderwood; and Wongawilli (NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, 2002, Bioregional Assessment Study Part I, Native Vegetation of the Illawarra Escarpment and Coastal Plain).