Territory Stories

Desert fire : fire and regional land management in the arid landscapes of Australia



Desert fire : fire and regional land management in the arid landscapes of Australia

Other title

edited by GP Edwards and GE Allan


Edwards, Glenn P; Allan, G. E.


E-Publications; E-Books; PublicationNT; DKCRC Report 37




Date:2009; Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).

Table of contents

Executive summary -- 1. Introduction and overview of Desert Fire -- 2. Managing fire in the southern Tanami Desert -- 3. Aboriginal burning issues in the southern Tanami: towards understanding tradition-based fire knowledge in a contemporary context -- 4. Pastoralists’ perspectives on the costs of widespread fires in the pastoral lands of the southern Northern Territory region of central Australia, 2000–02 -- 5. A review of fire management on central Australian conservation reserves: towards best practice -- 6. The fire history of Rainbow Valley Conservation Reserve 1984–2005.




Fire Management -- Australia, Central

Publisher name

Desert Knowledge Cooperative Research Centre

Place of publication

Alice Springs


DKCRC Report 37


iii, 338 p. : col. ill. ; 30 cm.

File type



1741581125; 1741581109





Copyright owner

Desert Knowledge Cooperative Research Centre



Parent handle


Citation address


Page content

Desert Knowledge CRC 8Desert Fire: f i re and regional land management in the ar id landscapes of Austral ia Ch : Aboriginal burning issues in the southern Tanami: tradition-based fire knowledge pp. 98 Employment ranger groups (If appropriate) have the community rangers be the major drivers of the fire strategy for the area once the group has become established (there may be some unwanted reprecussions from this, however, such as disputes about community rangers burning on the wrong country in the wrong way, or having community rangers perceived as the new caretakers of fire, therefore stopping the people who are currently burning from being active with fire). Have community rangers control fires for structural fire-fighting purposes. Is it valuable to get community rangers to start using GPS to map the fires that are on site and to start using Cyber Trackers. Ranger programs could create fire breaks between the sub-leases and stations. Have Bushfires NT (and potentially pastoralists) support community rangers to burn fire breaks along pastoral properties. Incorporate traditional with contemporary fire techniques, with Newhaven as the test case. It would be good to start at the community scale, such as protecting community assets, which could involve the council paying for rangers, for example, to burn regularly around peoples properties. Supporting tradition-based users Provide greater assistance for people to travel to more remote parts of their country in the way of: greater access to suitable vehicles for burning and hunting that get used only for these activities construction of new tracks to more remote areas and maintenance of current tracks/roads permanent water facility provisions in more remote regions. Hire traditional owners who have good fire knowledge on consultant wages to advise on fire from the Traditional Owners perspective. Pay people consultancy rates at $300 per person per day, or $150 per person per day of group consultancy. Logistical considerations and limitations Communities need access to graders and tractors. People who go out with traditional owners will only be able to go to certain parts of the country and take only family and their policemen. Certain areas of Aboriginal land are sacred and cannot be burnt or included on maps for fire management plans. Drawing together a fire management plan requires guidance and coordination, otherwise nothing happens. The first phase of mosaic burning takes a long time to implement and the fuel loads must be studied beforehand. It is important to gather peoples perceptions of burning over time, and therefore it is necessary to get peoples concepts and understanding of history. It is difficult to consult with all appropriate families for all land tenure areas within a restricted period of time.

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