Linking language and cross cultural knowledge for animals and plants of South East Arnhem Land to western science knowledge through the Atlas of Living Australia

Presenters: Yugul Mangi Rangers, Emile Ens, Nat Raisbeck-Brown

Knowledge Holders from South East Arnhem Land have been working the Yugul Mangi Rangers and or Ngukurr Yangbala Rangers, Macquarie University, the Ngukurr Language Centre and the Atlas of Living Australia (ALA) to collect, protect and share language and knowledge about plants and animals. This project started in 2014 and was published in 2021 as a book and published online in 2022. The Rangers worked with the Elders to collect the language names, across 8 local languages, and traditional stories for their plants and animals. This language and knowledge, along with the creation of the South East Arnhem Land IPA and our local Ranger groups, means our community are taking control of managing our lands, sea, language and knowledge. By sharing this knowledge through a western science platform – the Atlas of Living Australia – we are building western science’s perception and understanding of Indigenous science.