Karijini National Park might appear quite dry and arid, but look a little closer, and you’ll see it’s teeming with life!
In winter and spring, wildflowers such as yellow-flowering acacias, purple mulla-mullas, and northern bluebells blossom on lower slopes, valley plains and drainage lines. Eucalypts and spinifex hummocks cover most areas of the park all year round.
Many of the plants here were used by Aboriginal people as food sources, remedies for illness and materials for tools. They would suck on the flowers of the Kardanyba (corkwood/honey hakea) to consume the nectar, and soak them in water to make a sweet drink.
The Minyjara (Vicks bush) was used as a remedy for coughs and colds. The leaves were also dried, boiled in water and used as a lotion around infected eyes and skin. The naturally twisting trunk and strong timber of the Marruwa (snakewood) was used to craft boomerangs.
Keep an eye out for the impressively tall, rocky mounds built by Manthu (termites), which keep their nest beneath cool – like a ventilation system. Another type of mound is built by the Ngadi (Western Pebble-mound mouse). They only weigh about 12 grams, but can build mounds up to four metres across and half a metre high!
There is spectacular bird life in Karijini National Park. The Warrirda (wedge-tailed eagle) is Australia’s largest bird of prey, with a wingspan of up to 2.5 metres!
The Jankurna, or Karlaya (emu), has powerful legs that can carry it at speeds up to 50km/h - though it is also a great swimmer. The Jirrunypa (grey honeyeater) builds small, fragile nests made from plant fibres woven with spider web, but is very rare and hardly ever seen, so keep an eye out!
Other Karijini locals include marsupials such as the Bajiwanarra (red kangaroo) and Bajarri (euro), and mammals such as the Mujira (dingo) and Gould's wattled bat.
Frogs, geckos, goannas, pythons and other snakes also live here. If you’re lucky enough, you might spot one of the rarer species that calls Karijini home, like the bilby or the endemic Pilbara ningaui.
When listening to the audio recording, please note that some traditional language may be mispronounced due to the text to speech technology used.