Australia Burning; Flammable Australia; *Many Peoples* who got called Australian Aborigines
- G'day and Dear all,
Critically important scholarly quoted message(s) here, in any regards to this
continent Oz, called Australia.
/On Linda's previous message: Yes! Grossly unbalanced.
Racialism–motivated falsehoods, whether you know it or not.
I have no tolerance for lies, especially racialist lies.
/End Linda 'correction'!
(These three primary sources books amongst many more i have read for examples,
from cover to cover.)
Flammable Australia: the fire regimes and biodiversity of a continent
Ross Andrew Bradstock, Jann Elizabeth Williams, A. M. Gill
The most up to date comprehensive review of fire ecology of Australia!!
Together with the equally up-to-date most plain-English summary of the whole
Australian fire ecology story:
Bowman, David "Bushfires: A Darwinian Perspective"
in Geoffrey Cary, David Lindenmayer, Stephen Dovers (2003) Australia burning:
fire ecology, policy and management issues
CSIRO Publishing. 280 pp.
Australia burning: fire ecology, policy and management issues
Geoffrey Cary, David Lindenmayer, Stephen Dovers
Fire and the Australian Biota
A. M. Gill, R. H. Groves, I. R. Noble
end select few example references.
/On Linda's previous message:
Racialism IS offensive, and ignorance of it, ignorantly repeating it, is no
excuse for it.
At the least you wrote in your prior message here in denial about racialism in
our Oz, and Peter Andrews written examples i have in writing but do not quote
not repeat here.
Peter Andrews and yours here are not scholarly writings on the subject.
/End Linda confusion, nonsense, bulldust and harm–correction!
Australians who arrogantly stick our heads out (egotistically), in accord with
the colonialist-spirit and deny deferring on any subject to
our-betters-on-that-subject, are the kind of typical European-Australian
individualist attitudes i'm pinpointing.
In contrast, scholarly writing... , quoted below:
Best wishes to all people—all life people.
Bowman, David "Bushfires: A Darwinian Perspective"
freely available online, from:
A balanced plain English brief summary (a scholarly, AND an uncorrupted one),
Keywords from Wikipedia for using in reading this:
* The Tertiary is a term for a geologic period 65 million to 1.8 million years
* The Pleistocene (pronounced /ˈplaɪstəsiːn/) is the epoch from 2.588 million to
12,000 years BC covering the world's recent period of repeated cycles
of glaciations and periods warmer than today.
* In paleogeography, Gondwana (pronounced /ɡɒndˈwɑːnə/),
originally Gondwanaland, is the name given to the southernmost of two
precursor supercontinents that came about around 200 Mya in the
late Mesozoic era as a part of the split of the huge Pangaea supercontinent that
is believed to have existed from its formation about 500 Mya. Gondwana is
believed to have undergone its final geological suturing to the Pangaea
formation between ca. 570 and 510 million years ago (Mya), joining East Gondwana
to West Gondwana. It later separated from Laurasia180-200 million years
ago during the breakup of the Pangaea supercontinent that existed about 500 to
200 Ma into two large segments, nearly equal in area. While the corresponding
northern-hemisphere continent Laurasia moved farther north, Gondwana drifted
south. It included most of the landmasses in today's southern hemisphere,
including Antarctica,South America, Africa, Madagascar, Australia-New Guinea,
and New Zealand, as well as Arabia and the Indian subcontinent, which have now
moved entirely into the Northern Hemisphere.
" ©CSIRO 2003
Bushfires: a Darwinian perspective
In the whole country I scarcely saw a place, without the marks of
fire; whether these may be more or less recent, whether the
stumps are more or less black, is the greatest change, which
breaks the universal monotony that wearies the eyes of a
Charles Darwin, 19 January 1836
Despite experiencing a bushfire and seeing evidence of them in the
landscape between Sydney and Bathurst, Charles Darwin’s diary
shows no evidence that he pondered the ecological significance of
this quintessentially Australian phenomenon.(1) Indeed, it was not
until the second half of the 20th century that the fundamental role
of fire in the dynamics of many Australian terrestrial ecosystems
was recognised.(2) To this day, the evolutionary path taken by the
Australian biota to tolerate bushfires, and eventually exploiting fire
for reproductive advantage, remains poorly understood.(3) Most
attention has been paid to the possible impacts that followed
Aboriginal colonisation in the late Pleistocene.(4)
It is my belief that Australians will continue to be bedevilled by
bushfire disasters until they have a coherent evolutionary
perspective on the subject. The quest for this knowledge forms the
core of my research.(5) I am also deeply aware of the power of stories
in translating academic knowledge into everyday understanding –
without a coherent narrative there is just a jumble of facts.(6) The
purpose of this chapter is to tell a story concerning the relationship
of fire, people and landscape by interpreting the existing knowledge.
This is my story of why Australia became the most flammable
continent on Earth, and how Australians should adapt to life in the
land of fire.
In the beginning Gondwana was green
The Tertiary fossil record of plants and animals, notwithstanding
its geographic biases and other deficiencies, leaves little doubt that
Australia was once clothed in a diversity of rainforest types.(7)
Fossils from the late Pleistocene record a diverse extinct fauna
characterised by large animals, a contraction of rainforest associated
with an increase in microscopic charcoal in swamp sediments
which point to an increase in landscape fire at this time.(8,9) Clearly,
powerful forces caused the ‘browning’ of a once green fragment of
The most popular explanation for these massive changes relates
to the alleged impacts of the first Australians who colonised a
vulnerable and naïve continent some 40,000 to 60,000 years ago.
Wielding spears and fire-sticks, the Aborigines are argued to have
despatched the megafauna in a hunting blitzkrieg, and destroyed
the rainforests with frequent fires.(11) The subsequent development
of ‘fire-stick farming’ is thought to have maintained the habitat of
the smaller marsupials that originally depended upon the openings
made by the extinct giant marsupials consuming vegetation. Frequent
burning triggered an evolutionary and ecological expansion of
flammable plants. In sum, Aboriginal burning created the bushfire
This is a powerful, compelling narrative that speaks to a
diversity of concerns including the origins and destiny of modern
Australians. Furthermore, this story can be interpreted as holding
out hope of breaking the current bushfire-cycle, ‘undoing’ the
ecological damage wrought by the first human colonists. Despite
its brilliance and popularity, I believe it is a flawed story because it
seeks to compress enormous ecological and evolutionary changes
into a tiny period of geological time. The great antiquity of the
archetypal Australian vegetation, dominated by Eucalypts and
Acacia, has been misjudged and consequently the long history of
bushfires upon which this vegetation depends has been underes-
Rainforests – scattered and burnt
In Australia the term ‘rainforest’ has diverged from the original
conception of luxuriant forests that develop in drought-free envir-
onments; indeed some Australian ecologists use the perplexing
term ‘dry rainforest’. This idiosyncratic terminology has arisen
because the definition of Australian rainforests hinges not on
moisture stress, but sensitivity to fire relative to the surrounding
The archipelago of fire-sensitive fragments of rainforest in a sea
of flammable vegetation has been interpreted as evidence of the
tremendous impact of landscape burning by the Pleistocene
colonists, based on the assumption that the pre-human landscape
was dominated by rainforest. This interpretation overlooks the
remarkable diversity of the fire-adapted biota and does not address
the question of how this ensemble of species evolved.
The arboretum at Currency Creek in South Australia provides a
unique opportunity to see archetypal eucalypts such as E. obliqua
and bizarre eucalypt species growing side-by-side.(14) The many
forms of Eucalyptus include species with upright needle-like leaves
(E. angustissima subsp. angustissima from saline sand plains from
southern WA), spreading habits with remarkably thick leaves (E.
tetraptera from the Stirling Range of southern WA), massively robust
woody capsules (E. youngiana from the Great Victoria Desert) and
tiny capsules (E. dawsonii from the central western slopes of NSW).
This morphological variation is the tip of the evolutionary iceberg.
Eucalypt species have dramatically contrasting environmental
tolerances and geographic ranges including highly restricted distrib-
utions, and display extraordinarily rich variation in associations
with plant and animal, particularly invertebrate, species assemblages.(15)
The convergent evolution of distantly related giant eucalypts
that require fire to regenerate and that inhabit environments that
could support true rainforest, were it not for bushfire, is also
consistent with a long evolutionary history. These include
mountain ash (E. regnans in south-eastern Australia),
karri (E. diversicolor in southern WA)
and flooded gums (E. grandis in eastern Australia).
While short-lived obligate-seeder plants may have had
enough generations to evolve under a regime of Aboriginal fire
management, it is inconceivable that the convergence of longer-
lived species could have arisen following human colonisation. Even
if Aboriginal colonisation occurred 60,000 years ago, there have
only been 200 generations of trees with life spans of 300 years. If
landscape burning by humans did not trigger the evolution of the
flammable Australian biota, what did?
Fire, air, earth and water
The final stage of the break-up of the super-continent Gondwana
involved the northwards drift of Australia. Unlike the other southern
continents, Australia remained isolated from the rest of the world
for most of its northward journey. The northward migration largely
offset the cooling involved in the formation of the Antarctic ice-
sheet. However, a consequence of the formation of the Antarctic
ice-sheet was the intensification and northward displacement of
the subtropical high-pressure system, triggering the aridification of
the continent from the south to the north since the mid-Tertiary.(16)
Sometime after the mid-Tertiary, a monsoonal climate developed
innorthern Australia, the depauperate fossil and sedimentary
deposits precluding more precise determination of its timing.(17)
Circumstantial evidence, however, points to the great antiquity of
the monsoonal climate, particularly the refined biological adap-
tations of the biota of the monsoon tropics. Classic examples of the
latter from northern Australia are the endemic ‘magnetic’ termite
mounds, and the abundance of primitive eucalypts in the section
Eudesmia such as E.tetrodonta and E.miniata and allied species such
as Allosyncarpia ternata.
The aridification of Australia combined with the annual pene-
tration of tropical convection storms, and associated lightning, deep
into the continental interior stimulated the gradual evolution,
diversification and geographic expansion of the flammable biota. The
absence of great rivers or mountain chains meant that there were
no geographic barriers to check the spread of fires. From the
monsoonal ‘cradle’, fire-promoting species expanded into higher
rainfall environments, where lightning was less frequent, gradually
displacing the Gondwanan rainforests from all but the most fire-
sheltered habitats. The classic example of this is the dynamic
balance between the giant mountain ash Eucalyptus regnans and the
southern beech Nothofagus cunninghamii.(18) In high rainfall areas with
no topographic shelter from fires, such as southern WA, almost the
entire rainforest flora and fauna became extinct, being replaced by a
‘modern’ fire-adapted biota.(19)
The sketchy fossil record of the late Tertiary has precluded the
determination of evolutionary relationships amongst taxa with
different fire sensitivities. Perhaps these relationships can be
revealed using molecular techniques to measure the ‘evolutionary’
distance between fire-adapted and taxonomically related rainforest
species. For example, I am studying, the phylogeny of the Australian
Livistona palms, some of which are remarkably fire tolerant (e.g. L.
humilis) and some of which are not (e.g. L. benthamii).(20)
Colonising a land of fire
Although the timing of colonisation remains uncertain, there is no
doubt Australian human history stretches back to the limit of
conventional radiocarbon dating (40,000 years ago), possibly
reaching back to more than 60,000 years ago. The timing of the
extinction of the Pleistocene faunas is more precisely known,
having occurred sometime after 40,000 years ago. Combining the
two sets of geochronological data leaves little doubt that humans
and the megafauna coexisted, most probably for an extended
period of time.(21) Because the timing and pattern of human colon-
isation remains uncertain, it is presently impossible to conclusively
relate environmental changes detected in the sedimentary record,
such as increases in microscopic charcoal particles in pollen cores,
to human or natural causes.
Unlike the North American situation, there is no direct evidence
of human predation of the Pleistocene fauna. The loss of a wide
cross-section of body sizes suggests that over-hunting was not the
primary cause of the extinctions. An alternative theory suggests
that anthropogenic changes in fire regimes modified habitats suffi-
ciently to have disadvantaged browsing animals. The primary
evidence for this theory rests on the comparison with the extinct
giant bird Genyornys newtoni which isotopic analyses of eggshells
show was a browser. In contrast, the surviving emu is shown to
be a generalist feeder.(22) However, it is uncertain if isotopic
signatures in fossils can reliably determine differences in habitat
caused by landscape burning. For this reason I am undertaking a
study to calibrate this methodology by comparing the isotopic
signatures of kangaroo teeth from areas in northern Australia
where fire management is undertaken by Aborigines and adjacent
Despite the absence of hard data demonstrating any impact of
landscape burning by Aboriginal colonists, I suspect colonisation
was associated with a significant change in vegetation structurefrom
dense to open understoreys but did not cause an equivalent change
in the floristic composition of fire-adapted vegetation. Initially
intensive burning may have also caused the contraction of fire-
sensitive rainforest patches, but such burning may have conserved
them, particularly during the high of glacial aridity. I reach these
conclusions by drawing a parallel between current landscapes
managed by Aborigines and similar unmanaged areas and by
assuming an ancient and continuous tradition of Indigenous fire
Country managed by the fire-stick
My recent studies in Arnhem Land and those of my student, Tom
Vigilante, in the north Kimberly have revealed the following three
key features of Aboriginal landscape burning. First, the major
ecological impact is the opening up of the vegetation by high
frequencies of fire that stunt woody species and produces sparse
loads of fine-fuels. Second, fire intensities are reduced, allowing the
survival of fire-sensitive species such as the cypress-pine Callitris
intratropicaand the conservation of vulnerable fragments of rain-
[snipped, for out of date by more recent evidence and a unusual–for–him rare
unbalanced part, which Bowman included (25).]
Regrettably, we cannot undertake similar comprehensive research
programs in southern Australia because of the dramatic changes that
have occurred over the last 200 years of settlement. Nonetheless,
colonial records and allied ecological studies show that at the time of
European settlement, many landscapes were more open than today
and were ideal for grazing animals. Since settlement there have been
marked changes in the distribution and structure of vegetation types
with a general trend towards increasing densities of trees. The classic
examples of these changes involve the widespread thickening of
rangelands, a process that admittedly is confounded by overgrazing
by introduced herbivores and the El Nino–La Nina climate cycles that
brings floods and droughts to eastern Australia.(26) In many forest
types, massive fires such as those in Victoria in 1939 have obliterated
the evidence of millennia of Aboriginal fire management.(27) It is my
impression that the current regrowth forests, once mature, will be far
denser than the original stands, and the associated massive accumu-
lations of fuel signal a shift from regular low-intensity fires towards a
cycle of infrequent and catastrophic fires.
Wild, tame and feral bushfires
I consider there are three great ages of bushfires in Australia: the pre-
human, when lightning started massive wildfires and enabled fire-
adapted species to eventually subordinate the Gondwanan rainforests
throughout the continent; the Aboriginal, when bushfires were
tamed; and the post-Aboriginal and the current period, when fire has
become feral. Different plant and animal species populations were
advantaged and disadvantaged, in some cases to the point of
extinction, under the dominant fire regimes characteristic of these
Under the pre-human fire regime that developed in the late-
Tertiary, fires were caused by infrequent lightning strikes to create a
‘coarse-scale’ mosaic of large areas of vegetation in different stages
of recovery. This pattern of landscape would have provided habitat
for a wide diversity of herbivores including browsers and grazers,
and the extensive fire edges would have supported animals requiring
a mix of resources. The Aboriginal colonists gradually ‘tamed’
wildfire as a tool to hunt game, including the extinct megafauna. This
system of fire usage created mosaics that supported high densities of
game species adapted to burnt landscapes. Although more research is
required to test the hypothesis, I suspect that the extinct fauna that
required long-unburnt habitats, such as the leaf-eating kangaroos
Sthenurus, Simosthenurus and Procoptodon would have been disad-
vantaged, and the addition of human hunting pressure may have
eventually driven such species to extinction.(28) Significantly, the
cessation of Aboriginal fire management and the associated periodic
landscape-wide loss of unburnt habitats seems to be an important
cause of the extinction of smaller mammals and some bird species in
the continental interior and monsoon tropics.(29,30) I suspect these
species were originally adapted to the long ecotones that formed the
boundaries between areas burnt by infrequent fires caused by
lightning. Following the imposition of Aboriginal fire management
these ‘edge species’ become dependent upon the fine-grained mosaic
created by Aboriginal fire-stick ‘ranching’. In sum, I suggest that one
of the great triumphs of the Pleistocene Australians was the taming
of wildfires through the development of ‘igniculture’.
While it is true that in some cases the 19th century squatters
and 20th century cattlemen adopted Aboriginal burning practices,
this technological transfer ceased with the more intensive
husbandry of stock that requires investment in infrastructure such
as fencing.(31)The disruption of the refined and consistently imple-
mented system of fire management established by Aboriginal
people is, I believe, the root of the current fire management
problem – tamed fire has become feral.
Learning to living with bushfire
Although there remains much uncertainty about how Australia
became ‘the land of fire’, there is sufficient information to inform
fire management. I interpret the existing knowledge as showing
that attempts to totally suppress fire are futile. Rather than fighting
against the inevitable ‘tide’ of bushfires, Australians need to adapt
more effectively to their fire-prone land. However, this now
represents a tremendous challenge because of the construction of
infrastructure and habitations established in bushland.
The very serious threat fire poses to life and property, and the
widespread phobia of landscape fires provides a strong incentive to
impose a policy of fire prohibition backed by fire suppression tech-
nologies. In the short term these approaches may work, but in the
longer term they will fail because it is impossible to snuff out the
inherent flammability of the Australian environment. Just as flood
mitigation encourages people to build on flood plains so too fire
suppression encourages the establishment of flammable buildings
and settlements embedded in bushland. The typical media portrayal
of bushfires as ‘disasters’ reinforces the desire to wage war against
fire, and failure seems only to spur on heroic attempts to achieve a
While it is unrealistic to attempt to ‘return’ to Aboriginal fire
management, the fact that Aborigines were able to ‘tame’ wildfire
should be a great source of inspiration in the quest for ecologically
sustainable fire regimes. To achieve this goal, a landscape perspective
is required with analyses of why some styles of fire management
work and others fail: current landscapes should be seen as great
‘natural experiments’ that await investigation. The findings of these
studies are vital to sustain the process of ‘adaptive management’ that
involves learning about and articulating the efficacy of various
management interventions. In this regard, I suspect that the common
mode of conducting short-term and narrowly focused ecological
studies has generated a blizzard of details that engender a sense that
coherent solutions will remain forever elusive. There is a funda-
mental mismatch between the temporal and spatial scales at which
fire managers and ecologists operate. Ecologists typically work at the
local scale and consider the longer-term fate of populations, while
fire managers work at the landscape scale with the immediate goal of
fire suppression. Fire managers often see only ‘fuel’ and forget about
the conservation of biodiversity so valued by ecologists. It remains a
great challenge to balance these sharply contrasting but legitimate
perspectives. We must identify relative costs and benefits of recurrent
fuel reduction fires compared to infrequent massive ‘back-burns’
used in bushfire suppression, and indeed wildfire.
Rather than attempting to manage landscapes for all possible
biological and social outcomes, I suggest we should accept that fire
management can achieve only a limited number of objectives.
Further, fire management is context specific, for example small
fragments on the urban fringe present fewer options than large
tracts in remote areas. Nonetheless, I see no reason why focused
fire management should not be ecologically sustainable. In this
regard, I see a parallel with the fire management system developed
by Aborigines, which was focused on the management of a few
core species but nonetheless conserved the biodiversity we value
today. There can be no doubt that some styles of management are
more sympathetic to biodiversity and ecosystem services than
others. I believe the currently ascendant ‘bushfire disaster’ mode of
management is ultimately more destructive of biodiversity than a
program of recurrent fires to reduce fuel loads.
Sustainable fire management requires complicated trade-offs
to realise specific objectives. A concrete example concerns the
management of bushfire smoke. High concentrations of micro-
scopic particulates from severe wildfires surrounding Darwin are
correlated significantly with hospital presentations for asthma,
whilst no such pattern was evident with the low levels of partic-
ulates associated with control burning and less severe wildfires.(32)
We must accept that some management goals, such as reduced fire
hazards, may have costs including the loss of some elements of
biodiversity and the nuisance of low levels of smoke pollution.
Just as gardens reflect the character of their owners, I suggest
that landscapes reflect the character of their communities. As I
drive through the settled landscapes of southern Australia I sense
we are ‘still settling Australia’.(33) I sense a Darwinian struggle of an
industrial civilisation adapting to a fiery land. While I am confident
that we will achieve sustainable fire management, the question
remains whether this will be achieved rapidly by design or painfully
by being gradually worn down by implacable evolutionary forces.(34)
1 Nicholas, F.W. & Nicholas, J.M. (2002).Charles Darwin in Australia.
2 Bradstock, R.A., Williams, J.E., & Gill, A.M. (2002). Flammable Australia: the
fire regimes and
biodiversity of a continent.(Cambridge University Press: Cambridge.)
3 Bond, W. (2002). Burning issues down under. Trends in Ecology and Evolution
4 Bowman, D.M.J.S. (1998). Tansley Review No. 101: The impact of Aboriginal
burning on the Australian biota. New Phytologist 140, 385–410.
5 I wish to record my debt to the late Professor W.D. Jackson who taught me to
bushfire as an evolutionary force.
6 Cronon, W. (1992). A place for stories: nature, history and narrative. The
Journal of American
History 78, 1347–76.
7 Hill, R.S. (1994). History of the Australian vegetation: Cretaceous to
University Press: Cambridge.)
8 Flannery, T.F. (1994). The future eaters: an ecological history of the
Australasian lands and people.
(Read Books: Sydney.)
9 Kershaw, A.P., Clark, J.S., Gill, A.M. & D’Costa, D.M. (2002). A history of
fire in Australia.
In Flammable Australia: the fire regimes and biodiversity of a continent(Eds
R.A. Bradstock, J.E.
Williams & A.M. Gill.) pp. 3–25. (Cambridge University Press: Cambridge.)
10 White, M.E. (1994). After the greening: the browning of Australia. (Kangaroo
11 Hill, op. cit.
12 Bowman, D.M.J.S. (2000). Australian rainforests: islands of green in the land
of fire. (Cambridge
University Press: Cambridge.)
13 Bowman, D.M.J.S. (2001). On the elusive definition of ‘Australian
rainforest’: response to
Lynch and Neldner (2000). Australian Journal of Botany 49, 785–7.
14 Nicolle, D. (2000).Currency Creek Arboretum (CCA) eucalypt research, Volume
1. (D. Nicolle:
15 Williams, J.E. and Woinarski, J.C.Z. (1997). Eucalypt ecology: individuals
(Cambridge University Press: Cambridge.)
16 Bowler, J.M. (1982). Aridity in the late Tertiary and Quaternary of
Australia. In Evolution of
the flora and fauna of arid Australia. (Eds W.R. Barker & P.J.M. Greenslade.)
(Peacock Publications: Adelaide.)
17 Bowman, D.M.J.S. (2002). The Australian summer monsoon: a biogeographic
Australian Geographic Studies 40, 261–77.
18 Jackson, W.D. (1968). Fire, air, water and earth – an elemental ecology of
Proceedings of the Ecological Society of Australia 3, 9–16.
19 Bowman, D.M.J.S. (2000). Rainforest and flame forests: the great Australian
dichotomy. Australian Geographical Studies 38, 327–31.
20 The research is in collaboration with Professor Yuji Isagi, of Hiroshima
supported by a major Japanese Government research grant.
21 Brook, B.W. & Bowman, D.M.J.S. (2002). Explaining the Pleistocene megafaunal
extinctions: models, chronologies, and assumptions. Proceedings of the National
Sciences, USA 99, 14624–27.
22 Miller, G.H.F., Magee, J.W., Johnson, B.J., Fogel, M.L., Spooner, N.A.,
McCulloch, M.T. &
Ayliffe, L.K. (1999). Pleistocene extinction of Genyornis newtoni:human impact
Australian megafauna. Science 283, 205–8.
23 The research is in collaboration with a number of other researchers
Gruen, Associate Professor Rod Wells and Dr Michael Gagan), my student PhD
Murphy and is supported by the Australian Research Council.
24 Bowman, D.M.J.S., Garde, M. & Saulwick A. (2001). Kunj-ken makka man-wurrk:
fire is for
kangaroos: interpreting Aboriginal accounts of landscape burning in Central
In Histories of old ages: essays in honour of Rhys Jones.(Eds A. Anderson, I.
Lilley & S.
O’Connor .) pp. 61–78. (Pandanus Books: Canberra.)
25 Bowman, D.M.J.S., Price, O., Whitehead, P.J. & Walsh, A. (2001). The
and the decline of Callitris intratropica on the Arnhem land Plateau, northern
Australian Journal of Botany 49, 1–8.
26 see papers in Bowman, D.M.J.S. & Farrer, S.L. (2002). Measuring and
centuries of Australian landscape change. The Special 50th Anniversary Issue.
Journal of Botany 50.
27 Griffiths, T. (2001). Forests of ash: an environmental history.(Cambridge
28 Prideaux, G.J. (in press). Systematics and evolution of the sthenurine
of California Publications in Geological Sciences.
29 Franklin, D.C. (1999). Evidence of disarray amongst granivorous bird
assemblages in the
savannas of northern Australia, a region of sparse human settlement. Biological
30 Woinarski, J.C.Z., Milne, D.J. & Wanganeen, G. (2001). Changes in mammal
in the relatively intact landscapes of Kakadu National Park, Northern Territory,
Austral Ecology 26, 360–70.
31 Barr, N. & Carey, J. (1991). Greening a brown land: the search for
sustainable land use.
32 Johnston, F.H., Kavanagh, A., Bowman, D.M.J.S., & Scott, R. (2002). Exposure
smoke and asthma: an ecological study. Australian Medical Journal 176, 535–8.
33 Dovers, S. (2000). Still settling Australia: environment, history, and
policy. In Environmental
history and policy: still settling Australia. (Ed. S. Dovers.) pp. 2–23.
(Oxford University Press:
34 I thank Don Franklin, Fay Johnston, Aaron Petty and Peter Whitehead for
allowing me to
rehearse these ideas with them. "
© CSIRO 2003
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