This app features Aboriginal bird knowledge from the closely-related Dhauwurd Wurrung, Djargurt Wurrung, Kee Wurrung, Kirrae Wurrung, Kuurn Kopan Noot, Peek Wurrung and Wooloowoorroong languages/dialects of south west Victoria. Although these languages are no longer spoken, language revival is underway through education activities in schools and communities, delivered by the local Laka Gunditj Language Program and other initiatives. Interactive digital tools and apps are also being developed to facilitate language revival (See Victorian Aboriginal Corporation for Languages (VACL) website http://www.vaclang.org.au for examples of apps featuring creation stories from country for these languages).
The app has been created as a tool for learning about language, culture and the natural environment. Included for the 48 featured bird species are Aboriginal names (both written and as a sound file), scientific and common names, and sound files of the bird calls. Aboriginal knowledge of and connections with these birds is also described. Each of the Aboriginal languages/dialects are noted by the following abbreviations: Dhauwurd Wurrung (T), Djargurt Wurrung (TY), Kee Wurrung (KE), Kirrae Wurrung (KR), Kuurn Kopan Noot (K), Peek Wurrung (P) and Wooloowoorroong (W).
Compilation of archival and present-day Aboriginal bird knowledge for south west Victorian languages was undertaken by the Glenelg Hopkins Catchment Management Authority (CMA) in collaboration with the Laka Gunditj Language Program, the Eastern Maar Nation and Gunditj Mirring Traditional Owners. Eastern Maar and Gunditj Mirring Traditional Owner groups approved publication of this information in the CMA’s Woodland Bird Identification Booklet and in the Part-parti Mirring-yi (Birds in Country) app.
The app has been developed in partnership with the Research Unit for Indigenous Language (RUIL) at the University of Melbourne and the NT Language Support program at Batchelor Institute, Alice Springs, as part of the ‘Getting in Touch’ project. The Getting in Touch project was jointly funded by the Melbourne Social Equity Institute (The University of Melbourne), RUIL (Research Unit for Indigenous Language, The University of Melbourne), BI (The Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education) and FLA (First Languages Australia). The project was supported by Glenelg Hopkins CMA through funding from the Australian Government National Landcare Programme. Many thanks to the Laka Gunditj Language Program who provided bird names and species identification information from their South West Aboriginal Languages Program database.