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Nyangumarta Warrarn IPA and Rangers

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Charmaine Wright, Nyangumarta Ranger. Photo :© Yamatji Marlpa Aboriginal Corporation

Dedicated in 2015, Nyangumarta Warrarn Indigenous Protected Area (IPA) covers a vast 2.8 million hectares. Nyangumarta Warrarn IPA is a rich and varied landscape with high ecological values. It includes the seemingly endless stretches of Eighty Mile Beach, to Ramsar listed wetlands and the rolling sand dunes of the Great Sandy Desert.  

The Nyangumarta Warrarn IPA overlaps with several conservation reserves which are jointly vested or managed with the Western Australian Department of Parks and Wildlife. These include Eighty Mile Beach Marine Park, Walyarta Conservation Park and Kujungurru Nature Reserve. The majority of the IPA though is desert country which harbours many culturally significant sites, flora and fauna. It contains threatened species such as the greater bilby, and the marsupial mole. The IPA is also home to a  number of endangered plant species. 

Nyangumarta Native Title holders have a holistic approach to land management. The landscape, plants and animals within Nyangumarta country have been inseparable from Nyangumarta law, culture, language and traditional knowledge since Creation time. They are integral to Indigenous conservation and land management. 

The Nyangumarta Rangers are currently based in Bidyadanga, which is Karajarri country. However they operate mainly in the Nyangumarta Warrarn IPA. 

The rangers monitor and protect the many sites that have cultural significance on Nyangumarta country. They also tackle a range of land management activities such as:  

  • weed management  
  • water monitoring  
  • fencing  
  • feral animal and fire control.  

They record traditional knowledge to pass on to future generations and interact with students in schools or on field trips. The rangers have started addressing tourism development priorities, particularly through the permit system for the Nyangumarta Highway (Kidson Track/Wapet Road). 

The Nyangumarta Rangers collaborate with the Western Australian Department of Parks and Wildlife in ecological surveys. They also work together to monitor threatened species such as marine turtles and the rich bird life visiting the coastal and wetland areas during the summer. 

The Nyangumarta Warrarn Aboriginal Corporation has published a compilation of traditional ecological knowledge of the Nyangumarta Warrarn IPA. The booklet is a collection of ethno-botanical information passed down through generations of Nyangumarta people, and contains descriptions of 70 species. 

Digital copies of the booklet can be downloaded from the YMAC website here

State: WA - Central and Southern region

Administration Organisation

Yamatji Marlpa Aboriginal Corporation


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