Birriliburu Indigenous partnership update

on 14 Jul 2015 

The Birriliburu Indigenous Protected Area (IPA), home of the Martu people, consists of 6.6 million hectares of desert country (approximately the size of Tasmania!) north of Wiluna in Western Australia.

Bush Heritage Australia has been in partnership with the Traditional Owners of the Birriliburu IPA for the past two years. Together with Central Desert Land and Community, Bush Heritage Australia has been working to further develop the Birriliburu conservation and land management program.

We have provided ecological advice for projects related to the collation of bush tucker knowledge, fire management, monitoring of threatened species, feral animal control and weed control. The partnership has provided an opportunity for cross-cultural exchange and led to increased opportunities for collaboration and investment.

A number of senior Bush Heritage Australia staff including our CEO, Gerard O’Neill, and two Board members, Chris Grubb and Nick Burton Taylor, recently returned from a fantastic trip on country with Traditional Owners who are part of the ranger program and representatives from Central Desert Land and Community.

The trip marked the start of a new stage of the partnership whereby Bush Heritage Australia will provide funds for ranger wages and project equipment for the next three years.

The trip included lots of stories around the fire (waru), bush tucker (milka) morsels and visits to some spectacular water holes (kapi) of cultural and ecological significance.

At the end of the trip we were also fortunate to attend the IPA dedication ceremony for Matuwa Kurrara Kurrara (formerly known as Lorna Glen and Earaheedy pastoral stations) adjacent to Birriliburu.

The event was very special for the Martu people and provided a great opportunity to meet others working on conservation land management programs in the region.