Traditional knowledge, like that captured in these Indigenous seasons calendars, can tell us much about the ecology of Australia.

Over the past ten years, CSIRO has worked with a range of Indigenous language groups to develop a series of calendars representing seasonal ecological knowledge.

Gulumoerrgin (Larrakia) seasons calendar

Six of the calendars were developed as part of the Tropical Rivers and Coastal Knowledge program, two as part of an Inspiring Australia Unlocking Australia's Potential grant, two as part of the National Environmental Research Program's Northern Australia Hub, and one as part of CSIRO's Indigenous Livelihoods project.

The calendars demonstrate the wealth of knowledge that Aboriginal people in Australia hold about the environment.

The groups included:

  • Gulumoerrgin/Larrakia people from the Darwin region in the Northern Territory
  • Ngan’gi, MalakMalak and Wagiman people from the Daly River region in the Northern Territory
  • Tiwi people from the Tiwi Islands, north of Darwin in the Northern Territory
  • Kunwinjku people from western Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory
  • Gooniyandi and Walmajarri people from the Fitzroy River area in the Kimberley region of Western Australia
  • Ngadju people from the Great Western Woodlands region in south-west Western Australia
  • Kundjeyhmi people from the Ngurrungurrudjba (Yellow Water) region in Kakadu National Park in the Northern Territory

Documenting the calendars has informed the scientific understanding of the relationships between people and the seasonal cycles of resource availability. In the future the calendars may provide an important baseline for detecting ecological change associated with climate change. They have also had a positive social benefit by making Indigenous knowledge more accessible to school students and the broader community.

Interested in helping us further this research?

We seek research collaborators with complementary skills so we can work together for stronger results.

Contact us

Have a question? Contact us using the form below, or call 1300 363 400 during business hours .

Your contact details

First name must be filled in

Your enquiry*

We'll need to know what you want to contact us about so we can give you an answer.