Issue 17
Monday, 09 October 2017
Charles Darwin University
E-news
Traditional owners and researchers honour a long-term partnership to better understand the relationship between fish and flows in the Daly River
Traditional owners and researchers honour a long-term partnership to better understand the relationship between fish and flows in the Daly River

Scientists and TOs celebrate deep river connection

A 13-year research partnership between Wagiman traditional owners, scientists from the Tropical Rivers and Coastal Knowledge consortium, and the NT Government has been celebrated at an event on traditional Wagiman country in the upper Daly River region.

Project leader Professor Michael Douglas said the Daly River Fish and Flows project was one of the longest running research partnerships in the region.

“The research partnership continues to investigate the relationship between fish and river flows in the Daly River (Guwardagun) to support regional water planning and allocation,” Professor Douglas said.

“It was only meant to be a three-year project when it started in 2005. But we quickly realised that the research findings, as well as the partnership itself, were so valuable that it needed to continue.”

The project has helped cultivate a deeper shared understanding of the Daly River through integrating Indigenous ecological knowledge with scientific knowledge, including through the production of the Wagiman Fish Poster. It has also empowered traditional owners through fostering connection to country and opportunities for employment and training.

The event was a chance for traditional owners, rangers and scientists to reflect on the wide range of scientific and social benefits that have resulted from the partnership, as well as share updates on the latest research findings.

The project, support by the Australian Government’s National Environmental Science Program and the former National Environmental Research Program, involves researchers from Charles Darwin University and the University of Western Australia.