In 2006, the Anindilyakwa Indigenous Protected Area (IPA) was declared over Groote Eylandt, Bickerton Island and other islands in the archipelago. In 2016, traditional owners successfully extended the IPA to include approximately 7,000km2 of the surrounding sea country. The Anindilyakwa IPA now covers an area of approximately 10,000km2.
The land and sea within the IPA features culturally significant sites, songlines, and traditional resources that are highly valued by the traditional owners. The IPA also has significant conservation value – over 900 plant species, over 150 marine fish species, and at least 330 terrestrial vertebrate species have been recorded within its boundaries, including numerous threatened species.
The IPA supports the only known population of the northern hopping mouse, is a key refuge for the northern quoll and the brush-tailed rabbit rat, and contains important breeding areas for four threatened marine turtle species, foraging habitat for migratory shorebirds, and several internationally significant seabird rookeries. Many of the threatening processes operating across northern Australia are absent from, or at low levels across the IPA. It remains largely undisturbed and has no established agriculture, is free of cane toads, has no large introduced herbivore or pig populations, and retains a relatively benign fire regime.
Given its cultural and conservation significance, both customary and contemporary practices are essential in the successful management of the IPA, which is therefore undertaken by the Anindilyakwa Land and Sea Rangers, with guidance from a representative body of senior traditional owners, in accordance with the Anindilyakwa IPA Plan of Management 2016. An Advisory Committee comprising representatives from various government, industry, and research organisations also provides direction to the Rangers.
2020 Helicopter Survey
The video content was filmed by the Anindilyakwa Land & Seas Rangers during their 2020 helicopter surveys. ALC Media provided equipment and training including filming and editing techniques to complete the production. © 2020 Anindilyakwa Land & Sea Rangers and Anindilyakwa Land Council