Jude came out for a visit recently and we went on a 5 day scartree tour with all the bells and whistles. This paleo channel system and surrounding countryside aka Murramanaarr is a goldmine for Indigenous Archaeologists. We also visited Cuddie Springs where she worked on & off between 1991 and 2009. This is the only site in the country with a secure association and overlap of humans and megafauna beginning around 40ka. This coexistence for a period of 10,000 years or more points the finger at climate change being the main factor driving the Megafauna extinction not human predation. I have always been with her on this as before 1788 Aboriginal people all over the country set aside sanctuaries and breeding areas for the preservation of wildlife. Totem and easily accessed foods were often off the menu for young men to reserve for the elderly. People used cool fire in a mosaic pattern with traditional burning systems to preserve diversity. Wiping out species with over hunting and harvesting is not a sustainable way of life and if you hang around for millennia this would be a no brainer.
Speaking of burning patterns I will lift these points from Bill Gammage’s exceptionally well researched “The biggest estate on earth – how aborigines made Australia “. If we are going to have any rainforest or koalas or biodiversity left those managing national parks and reserves & special habitats need to follow the ‘learning curve in fire management:’
1 The more fuel is reduced, the more easily fire is controlled, and up to a point the more useful it is.
2 Even hot fires leave unburnt patches, but the cooler the fire the bigger the patches.
3 Burnt & unburnt patches benefit animals by balancing burnt (feed) and unburnt (shelter) country.
4 Patches form mosaics, which can be adjusted in size by varying fire intensity.
5 Intensity can be regulated by fire frequency and timing.
6 Frequency & timing are local. They depend on local flora & local moderators like rain, wind, temperature and aspect.
7 The better people understand these variables, the more they can burn with purpose. They can move from limiting fuel to shaping country.
8 This lets them selectively locate fire tolerant & fire sensitive plants, situate and shape mosaics and resources conveniently and predictably, and arrange them in sequence so one supplies what another does not.
Marching in extinction rebellion protests or blaming irrigators and miners won’t save our koalas. Get informed and learn how the country was managed before 1788 and we may be able to preserve not just our cute photogenic fauna but whole ecosystems. Ignorance of our age old methods of environmental management is driving new extinctions. You cannot set & forget (fence off & destock) in Oz as our climate is too variable and unpredictable. Employ more indigenous rangers and ecologists to make firestick farming part of the preservation of our National parks and reserves. This would require more than a stroke of a bureaucrats’ pen but real governmental change. The difficulty of this is illustrated by a recent email “
Oxford University researchers have discovered the densest element yet known to science. The new element, Governmentium (symbol=Gv), has one neutron, 25 assistant neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312.These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles called pillocks. Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert.
However, it can be detected, because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact.A tiny amount of Governmentium can cause a reaction that would normally take less than a second, to take from 4 days to 4 years to complete. Governmentium has a normal half-life of 2 to 6 years. It does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganisation in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places.
In fact, Governmentium’s mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganisation will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes. This characteristic of moron promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a critical concentration. This hypothetical quantity is referred to as a critical morass. When catalysed with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium (symbol=Ad), an element that radiates just as much energy as Governmentium, since it has half as many pillocks but twice as many morons