Across the Range: the history of fire and landscape in southeast Australia

Palaeoworks Across the range

A new education /research initiative is being developed by palaeoworks with seed funding from a Strategic Partner Development Grant (CAP ANU) and support from CABAH. The project aims to investigate the long-term history of fire in Taungurung country, which includes extensive areas in the alpine zone. Janelle recently spent a week out on country with Shane Monk and Francisco Almeida (Taungurung Clans Aboriginal Corporation – TCAC) sampling potential sites and working out the logistics of an on country teaching program.

Unfortunately a late end to the snow season means they weren’t able to access any alpine sites, but a number of lower altitude sites were sampled. Simon was also able to join them for a day sampling around the Strathbogies, and by the end of the week they had located and cored three sites with great potential. Janelle also ran a demonstration day on palaeo methods at the TCAC offices in Broadford and had a great time getting to know the staff and other community members. A follow up reconnaissance field trip is planned for Mount Stirling in late November or January – weather permitting.

Work has also started on the summer intensive course “Fire and culture in Australia’s alpine zone: working with and learning from Indigenous Australia”. This will be a  research led learning experience for ANU undergraduate students that includes a strong mentoring component with the inclusion of high school students from the TCAC community in course activities.