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The Sanctuary Scheme is a voluntary scheme that encourages and assists landowners to provide habitats for wildlife on their property. A sanctuary is a private or public area containing high value habitat outside the DEW system of parks and reserves.

There have been sanctuaries in South Australia since 1919. Originally they were set up to provide areas where mammals and birds could not be hunted.

Sanctuaries are declared on land containing areas of established habitat where landowners are committed to conservation management.