Photo: Kristian Bell

2019 Bush Heritage Australia ‘Right Way’ Science Prize winners – Yugul Mangi Rangers

Yugul Mangi Rangers, South East Arnhem Land Elders and ecologists have joined forces to create the Yugul Mangi Faiya En Sisen Kelenda, or Yugul Mangi Fire and Seasons Calendar, to guide fire management in the South East Arnhem Land Indigenous Protected Area.

This ‘two-way’ science involves Traditional Owners in savanna burning and protecting bush tucker and culturally significant areas, says Yugul Mangi Ranger Winston Thompson, who led the group. It also checks the ecological boxes of mosaic burning – where different patches of land are burned at different times – and lowering greenhouse gas emissions.

To make the calendar, Winston and his team included forty biocultural indicators, as well as important bush tucker resources, weather conditions, and recommendations for savanna burning.

Aside from being an example of cultures sharing knowledge, the calendar could help regional fire management planning, improve our understanding of savanna burning, and help transfer Indigenous ecological knowledge from one generation to the next.

Watch a video made by the Yugul Mangi Rangers after their award win:

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