Central New South Wales | Declared in July 2011
"Murrawarri cultural and traditional values before settlement were looking after each other and looking after country by singing the country, dancing, walking the country, keeping the country lore pure, burning the country and living the land...Our spiritual values play a significant part in the lives of all Murrawarri people"
Weilmoringle Plan of Management
Weilmoringle scar tree | Weilmoringle IPA
At the Weilmoringle Indigenous Protected Area, scarred, grey eucalypts dot the landscape, providing roosts for Major Mitchell cockatoos while brolgas feed around the many shallow creeks and swamps. Found in central New South Wales, near the Queensland border, Weilmoringle covers an area of 3,500 hectares.
The Murrawarri are the traditional owners of this land. Weilmoringle is an adaption of the Murrawarri word for 'oldman saltbush'; Wulmurinkle. Murrawarri lived and celebrated the land through dance, song, corroborees and dreaming stories. The Murrawarri people's relationship to the land has not wavered as they continue to practice their culture, traditions and stories.
Murrawarri continue to tell the story of Pitangulu of the fire dreaming. He came down from the dreamtime, gathered embers from the fires and created the stars. By watching the stars, the clans of the Murrawarri would know when the seasons changed, when certain plants were ripe, and when animals were plentiful.
Weilmoringle has a number of significant cultural sites. The sandhill camps retain remnants of historic long-term campsites which were regularly used for ceremonies and corroborees.
Along Burban Creek, a number of scar trees, oven sites and other artefacts have been found. The bark from scarred trees was used to make coolamons (carrying dishes), humpies (small temporary shelters) and canoes. The Burban Creek evidence suggests that this area was highly occupied for extended periods of time.
The brolga and Major Mitchell's cockatoo are two species of bird found at Weilmoringle that are currently listed as vulnerable under the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act.
Brolgas feed predominantly in the dry grasslands of Weilmoringle as well as the shallow creeks and marshes common in the region. Major Mitchell cockatoos nest in tree hollows, and feed on the seeds of saltbushes and wattles.
Weilmoringle is home to 29 species of plants identified by Peter Dykes and others as having exceptional value in their publication Utilising Aboriginal knowledge in western New South Wales plant conservation. These plants are culturally significant as they help Murrawarri define themselves and their relationship to their country. Cypress pine, for example, is used for ceremonial, decoration and spiritual purposes, while also indicating the change of season.
Around 88 percent of the vibrant floral communities within Weilmoringle require strict management practices to ensure their preservation.
Community elders wanted to establish a Murrawarri cultural learning centre and care for their country themselves. To achieve these goals, the Indigenous Land Corporation purchased Weilmoringle and Orana stations for members of the Murrawarri Tribal Aboriginal Corporation in 2000.
Today the Weilmoringle Holding Company is responsible for the management of Weilmoringle Indigenous Protected Area.
Murrawarri traditional owners and Wytaliba community members have been an integral part of the creation of this protected area. Advice by elders and senior traditional owners has helped shape the cultural and natural management strategies employed.
Like all Indigenous Protected Areas, Weilmoringle is part of the National Reserve System - our nation's most secure way of protecting native habitat for future generations. Dedicated in July 2011, Weilmoringle is managed primarily under the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Categories IV and V, as a protected landscape.