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Bromley Aboriginal Corporation uses traditional fire management techniques to keep Country safe

Joseph Guenzler -

Indigenous burning methods are back in action at the Bromley Indigenous Protected Area.

The aim is reserving and reviving habitats for endangered creatures, notably the cherished Palm Cockatoo.

This initiative, facilitated by Queensland government grant 'Looking After Country', received planning aid from Cape York Natural Resource Management.

Bromley Aboriginal Corporation coordinator Chrissy Warren said the program "has brought fire management into a landscape where, in some areas, there has been no fire for many years and a more recent history of wildfires in others".

"This program is providing a gradual transition back to an appropriate fire regime and has provided opportunities for individuals to learn history and known ecological and cultural values to develop individual burn methodologies and operational maps," she said.

"We now have nine Traditional Owners who are accredited fire managers - in line with Qld Parks and Wildlife requirements - who can now conduct on-ground inspections of Country to inform decision-making on fire management."

Last year, efforts were directed towards Michingun Nature Refuge, Bromley Yuuka Nature Refuge, and privately-owned land in the south and west of Temple Bay.

Activities encompassed executing on-ground fire management tasks aligned with priorities outlined in the Bromley Fire Management Plan, alongside fire planning and permit applications.

Monitoring of fire management actions was also conducted, alongside the development of operational procedures to bolster forthcoming fire management endeavors.

The area is also home to other vulnerable species such as Cuscus and tree kangaroos.

Ms Warren said traditional fire management practices have historically safeguarded rainforest patches crucial as sustenance for Palm Cockatoos, while also preserving their vital hollow nesting trees within adjacent woodlands.

"The Traditional Owners all live off the Bromley property. The opportunity for employment and the resources to support spending time on Country is a key priority," she said.

"They also have Country on adjoining properties including Wuthathi, Kutini-Payamu (Iron Range) National Park and Mangkuma Land Trust.

"By building the capacity of the Bromley Traditional Owners this project benefits adjoining properties and the wider community, and creates a skilled and qualified workforce through the delivery of accredited fire training."

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