Identifying WA soils

Western Australia covers a vast area with a wide range of soil types. Many areas of the south-west of the state are characterised by soils with sandy surfaces ranging from deeps sands to sands over clays, and soils dominated by ironstone gravels. Soils in the northern parts of the state, although variable, are often characterised by oxides of iron giving them a characteristic red colour.

Soil type influences the capacity of the land to support agricultural production, and an understanding of their characteristics and distribution is very important for sustainable land management.

Through research and the development of information resources, the department plays an important role in assisting landholders to better understand their soils.


  • Soil aggregate stability is the ability of a soil to regulate the movement and storage of air and water throughout the soil profile, and the profile is determined by the soil make up of sand, silt