Kombumerri Traditional Custodian Contributor: Max Dillon

This resource is related to the following Learning Area –

And responds to the following Enquiry Question –

Q36.Were there farming or cultivation techniques used by the Kombumerri people?

Resource transcript –

Yeah a hundred percent. We farmed. You’d call it permaculture and it’s it’s basically creating ecosystems we that we govern and they govern themselves. So they’re smaller eco systems within the larger ones that we we manage and take care of and and start up. And the difference between our permacultures or our way of agriculture and today’s agriculture is the renewal of the soil and the nutrients and so with our systems and everything in place and they relied on each other as a life support system, the nutrients would continue back into the soil, come back through the seed, come back through the plants itself. Today it’s done differently it’s just you know lay down your seed a bit of fertiliser a bit of water ups your rips seed again or you know over and over again we had definitely different techniques and they we domesticated the plants over hundreds if not thousands of years. The plants themselves changed we had our staple diets and we moved with the seasons and we were primarily salt water people. We lived in fishing villages so we started aquacultures and fish fish traps so our fish traps also weir systems kept water in the area when there’s you know especially fresh water places in times of drought or when there wasn’t much rain, we had an abundance of water and when floods had come through our weirs ensured that the floods would pass through safely and one of the big natural disasters that occurred for the first time was the loss of our weir systems through most of South East Queensland and with that change crocodiles come down with the first big natural disaster we’d seen and that that was but basically basically a loss of weirs. Another thing is and it’s a relation to the binaural fish trap in New South and the Benawa fish trap is reportedly the oldest structure on earth at 80 000 years and so here on this continent we’ve been doing fish traps we’ve been engineers, engineering our waterways we relied on our animal our bird life as well to carry seed which is important and we create habitable wetlands so they would return with the seed and take seed away. Ducks are natural weeders so keeping ducks in the in their area by not taking their numbers down was important you’d want those ducks to stay there they pull the weeds up it’s in them to be natural weeders so when the ducks become too many and they start to impact on the on the plant life they are staple like our wild rice we’d knock knock down a few ducks but never enough to chase them away but keep them there and if we had our nets put up on poles and we’d ambush the ducks early in the morning and get the ducks to fly into the net drop the poles down you wouldn’t kill the ducks in front of each other because that would create a you know a bad scene a bad dead member “oh these fellas knocked us off here why do we want to stay here for?” so they would take the ducks away but only only to knock them down because they knew they were doing good work and help as part of their overall farming plan is to also incorporate animals and that was all over the map with most of our techniques of agriculture and fishing – way of life.