The name "Spiunifex Country" is given to the Spinifex Native Title Determination Area which covers 54 000
square kilometres of sandhill and Mulga country. The land area
is diverse, with the Nullarbor plains to the south, spinifex
bush and sandhill country to the north and a variety of land
forms incorporating lakes, rocky outcrops, hills, valleys and
open plains. The National Native Title Tribunal has prepared
a map of
the Spinifex Native Title region.
The region is one of the world's richest locations for lizard
diversity and has a wide range of desert marsupials, birds,
plants and insects. Many plant and animal species display unique
adaptations to the demanding desert environment.
Rainfall in Spinifex Country is low (17 -23 cm per year) and
very variable, falling mainly in summer storms. These storms
quickly sweep across the plains, bringing heavy rain and thunderstorms,
running water into rockholes and deep soaks. The long dry spells
feature high temperatures (often above 45ºC for weeks on
end), baking sun and hot wind - yet nights may fall below 0ºC.
Despite its rigours, this environment is available to provide
resources to sustain those with the knowledge to access them.
Of these resources, water is the most precious: rockholes, soaks,
wells, certain trees, plants and even animals can be a supply
to sustain life. Finding food and water for families in such
a challenging environment requires a highly developed and intimate
knowledge of the country and its seasons and cycles.
Work by artists of the Spinifex Art Project is available on our Spinifex
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