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Nyoongar Seasons

Local Aboriginal people, known as Whadjuk, identify six seasons which guided their movement across the land in this area.

For instance during Djeran (cool weather, April to May) families moved back along the Swan River away from the coast. When Makuru (cold and wet, June to July) came the Whadjuk moved further inland to their winter camps. By the time of Kambarang (warm and rain decreasing, October to November) the Whadjuk had started to move back to the coast as the weather warmed up.

Nyoongar season

Period

Equivalent season

Birak

December to January

Summer

Bunuru

February to March

Summer to Autumn

Djeran

April to May

Autumn

Makuru

June to July

Winter

Djilba

August to September

Winter to Spring

Kambarang

October to November

Spring

Birak

Dry and hot, Birak is characterised by arid easterly or north-easterly winds in the morning and coastal sea breezes in the afternoon.  Sections of scrubland were burned to force animals into the open.

Bunuru

The hottest part of the year with sparse rainfall throughout most of the south west. Easterly winds still prevail, but occasionally heat troughs bring humid conditions. Noongar move to estuaries for fishing.

Djeran

The cooler weather begins although rain is still infrequent and the winds are somewhat lighter. Fishing continued and bulbs and seeds were collected for food.

Makuru

The cold fronts that have brushed the lower south west coast begin to cross further north. This is usually the wettest part of the year as gales and storms occur with increasing frequency.

Djilba

Usually the coldest part of the year with clear, cold nights, rainy and windy periods. Roots were collected; emus, possums and kangaroo were hunted.

Kambarang

A definite warming trend is accompanied by longer dry periods and fewer cold fronts crossing the coast. Noongar moved towards the coast where frogs, tortoises and freshwater crayfish were caught and it is also the height of the wildflower season.

Visit the Walyalup Aboriginal Cultural Centre which is located near the Roundhouse at Arthur's Head, Fremantle. The centre exhibits local Nyoongar artists work and offers programs which run to the Aboriginal seasons, run by Aboriginal people in Aboriginal art, Nyoongar language, Aboriginal history and cultural tours. 

 

Fremantle Visitor Centre | Website : www.visitfremantle.com.au | Telephone number : +618 9431 7878