Everything in our vast landscape has meaning and purpose. Life is a web of inter-relationships where maam and yok men and women and nature are partners, and where kur a long ago, the past is always connected to yey present. Noongar connection with nature and boodja country signifies a close relationship with spiritual beings associated with the land.
We express this through our caring for boodja and observing Noongar lore through an oral tradition of story-telling. Noongar spirituality is one of many kaartdijin systems within Aboriginal Australia, and like other knowledge systems, there is diversity in our Noongar interpretations. It is the time before time when spirits rose from the earth and descended from the sky to create the land forms and all living things.
Nyitting stories laid down the lore for social and moral order and established cultural patterns and customs. Our Noongar Elders have the ability to comprehend the knowledge and to maintain it in an unchanging way. Noongar creation stories can vary from region to region but they are part of the connection between all living things. At York you can see where the Warkarl water snake left a track when he came over the hill. The Warkarl made the rivers, swamps, lakes and waterholes. He came over the hills at York, and his tracks can still be seen. He came down the Avon river to the nanuk neck of the river at Guildford, where there is a bend.
When he finished he went to a great underground cave in the river. He did not go on because the water further on was salty. The Warkarl is very important to us Noongar because we believe in the Dreaming. Author and poet the late Dr Jack Davis, an Aboriginal man who spent most of his life in Noongar booja, wrote the play Kullark You came, Warrgul, With a flash of fire and a thunder roar, and As you came, you flung the earth up to the sky, You formed the mountain ranges and the undulating plains.
You made a home for me On Kargattup and Karta Koomba, You made the beeyol beeyol, the wide clear river, As you travelled onward to the sea. And as you went into the sunset, Two rocks you left to mark your passing, To tell of your returning And our affinity.
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The Wauga l is the major spirit for Noongar people and central to our beliefs and customs. The Waugal is a snake or rainbow serpent recognised by Noongar as the giver of life, maintaining all fresh water sources. It was the Waugal that made Noongar people custodians of the land.
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Noongar people believe that the Waugal dominates the earth and the sky and makes the koondarnangor thunder , babanginy lightning and boroong rain. The Darling Scarp represents the body of the Waugal , which created the curves and contours of the hills and gullies.click here
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As the Waugal slithered over the land, its track shaped the sand dunes, its body scoured out the course of the rivers, where it occasionally stopped for a rest, and created bays and lakes. The Waugal rose up from Ga-ra-katta Mt. It also created other waterways and landforms around Perth and the south-west of Western Australia. The Waugal also joins up with wetlands such as Herdsman Lake and Lake Monger, and resides deep beneath underground springs. When the great Waugal created the boodja , he ensured that there was wirrin or spirits to look after the land and all that it encompassed.
Hi there I am teaching class two this year and would dearly love to take them on Noongar dreaming journey. I was wondering if you know of where I could source some stories that I could share. Thanks so much Anne-Marie McShannon. The old Waakal that lives in the water, they never let them touch them. Never let the children play with those. Nitcha barlup Waakal marbukal nyininy — that means he is a harmless carpet snake.
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He lives in the bush throughout Noongar budjar. That means that carpet snake, he belongs to the water. If you kill that carpet snake noonook barminyiny that W aakal ngulla kierp uart , that means our water dries up — none. That is their history stories and very true too. Noongar people believe that if you harm resting place of the rainbow serpent or his earthly beings at the place of water then the country would dry up and die. At York, you can see where the Warkal water snake left a track when he came over the hill.
The Warkal is the giver of life, he made the rivers, swamps, lakes and waterholes, he maintains the fresh water sources. Daisy Bates amateur anthropologist , who spent many years learning from Noongar people wrote about the Waugal :. Residing in certain springs, pools, hills, caves, gorges and trees the Woggal could also be an unfriendly and fearsome guardian spirit.
Nyungar believe in the Waakal very dearly. They reckon without the Waakal around they would have no water. They would not let the kids go and torment the Waakal. They would drive them away. There is a Waakal in the Swan River and he very rarely shows himself. He was very important to their lives, because they believed in having fresh water. They wanted the water, so they wanted the snake to stay alive. Noongar Elder Dorothy Winmar [vi]. The storylines, song-lines and Dreaming associated with the creation of all life form the basis of the Nyungar belief system kundaam.
This treading in the steps of our fathers reaffirms the beliefs, values, the social structures and fabric of the creation of the earth, the water and the sky and all things that live in and on it. Noongar belief in the Wauga l and its control over the fresh water is as relevant today as it has been since kura kura — long long ago. Noongar people have a deep sense of understanding about the role that jirda birds play within our spirit world.
Jirda are often messengers in Noongar boodja country. Some of the birds include the weelow curlew , djidi djidi willy wagtail and darlmoorluk twenty-eight parrot. Oh, Nyungar people feared him. If there was a place where they saw old Weerlow , they would never go there and camp, they would always camp away from him and if Weerlow lived in a certain area, they would turn their tent camps away from him. They would never put him between their camp and the fire.
They would never ever go and camp near where there were Weerlows , even my mum and old Uncle Tom Bennell and them. They were very powerful birds and the old people would say, wherever he is, he is death or someone is going to die if you hear him. He was always the bringer of death. Yeah, he was a symbol of death. Noongar Elder Janet Hayden [vii]. The djitti djitti was the little bird that lured you into the bush for the gnardis , the wudartjis. It will just bounce a little bit and entice you further and further away.
Dr Richard Walley [viii].
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Ha Ha, twenty-eight! He was a happy bird. If we knew he was coming to camp, he was not only a good feed, you know, Nyungars used to have a good feed out of that fella, but he was a happy bird. Sometimes the Nyungars only kill them when they were desperate. Only a few entries remain from the original iteration of the list: go to Antarctica, have an at bat in Yankee stadium, write a novel and travel to the Galapagos.
As a biologist, Darwin fan and nature lover, the Galapagos had always called my name. Around each bend, a new surprise awaited. I felt like a small child, in awe of everything I encountered, especially the endless array of colors delivered by these magical islands. The scarlet feet and blue bill of the red-footed booby, one of the most famous residents of the islands, help it stand out. Orange One hot, sunny afternoon, we spent a couple hours exploring a colony of Galapagos land iguanas.
When one stopped to rest for a moment, we got a good look at his wrinkled orange-yellow skin, sharp claws, and the spiky crest running along his back. With 13 different species of finches that share many similar characteristics and are endemic to the islands, they can be challenging to differentiate.
A colony of Galapagos fur seals greeted our pre-dawn arrival on Santiago Island. This minuscule, shockingly orange land lizard scurried over my foot and startled himself!
He then darted away and perched on a rock to get a better look at me. Yellow Defined by a set of sparkling yellow eyes against a black face mask, the Nazca booby lays two eggs every year. While visiting this very active colony, we witnessed a female who was still incubating her second egg, protecting a newly hatched baby. As we further explored the island, we saw adults interacting with each other and younger fledglings squawking at their parents.
Common in North America, I was surprised to find the yellow warbler down south. Somehow, it looked more exotic below the equator. Though we tend to focus on wildlife, the plant communities of the Galapagos are remarkable. One of my favorite scenes was this one: lava cactus backlit by golden light from the slowly setting sun, set against the stark backdrop of dark, wavy lava rock.