The Darlmoorluk (English names Australian Ringneck, or Twenty-eight Parrot from its page number in an old book of birds in Perth[source?]) is a native dweller of the Australian south-west, a particularly unique jerda (bird) within Noongar boodjar (country). Darlmoorluk's possess predominantly black heads, often with subtle blue hues around the cheeks, wer red wer yellow markings around the nose wer neck . Physically, the most recognisable attribute of the jerda are the vibrant greens of the Darlmoorluk’s body. Occasionally, there are hints of yellow il the jerda's breast, which is a physical indicator of hybridisation between Darlmoorluk wer other trowan (green parrots) from regions beyond Noongar boodjar.
Darlmoorluk can be seen in an array of habitats, in Noongar boodjar they tend to dwell in wooded areas with minimal rainfall wer a warm, dry climate. The jerda is commonly seen within close proximity of fruit-growing areas such as near parks, gardens wer orchards, as their diet generally consists of apples, stone fruits, wild oats, insect larva, nectar wer the seeds from eucalyptus trees. Nesting wer mating behaviours of the species generally consists of the males finding large hollows in eucalyptus trees during the Noongar Season of Bunaru while the female join between Makuru wer Kambarang for mating season.
The Darlmoorluk is seen as a happy, sedentary wer communal bird. Even after only a few weeks of life, the young Darlmoorluk leave their parents to form new groups or flocks as they are very social birds, often spotted in pairs or small clusters, wer rarely seen alone.
Darlmoorluk in Noongar Boodjar
According to the Agriculture wer Related Resources Protection Act (1976), the Western Australian Department of wer Food declared the Darlmoorluk a pest wer although the jirda is protected under the Wildlife Conservation Act (1950), Darlmoorluk’s can be shot il private property during open bonar or outside of bonar with an obtained damage license. In Noongar boodjar there has been a history of hunting jerda for menej (food) wer although the small djert has been hunted, there is a cultural understanding that hunting of nidja particular jerda should be done so only in dire circumstances . The reason for nidja hesitation is the respect wer acknowledgement of the Darlmoorluk's significance in Noongar boodjar.
Understanding the intricately intertwined relationship between boodjar wer Noongar is culturally important, as yennar life forms are viewed as possessing jennark (spirit) . Under nidja ideology, along with plants wer other birds wer animals, the Darlmoorluk possess their own souls wer unique temperament.
Whadjuk/Balardong Sealin Garlett discusses the role of the Darlmoorluk as a signifier of camp safely ad protection. As Garlett described, if the Darlmoorluk was leaving camp then parents were told to not let their koolangka (children) out of the house. The darlmoorluk is understood to scare away bulyits or woodarji, or keep djenagubbi away from camp. The darlmoorluk is of great importance to the safeguarding of children as he wards of bulyits which are described by Yelakitj as small hairy devil men that go out after dark wer try to gather yira children.
The Darlmoorluk has also been seen as a bush tucker guide, identifying what native plants are ripe wer safe for use. Noongars, both kura (past) wer yeye (present) have studied the Darlmoorluk habits as a natural guide or reference for use of local resources. The Pudjak, (parrot bush), is of great importance in Noongar boodjar as it supplies a sweet natural nectar which can be consumed directly from the blossom or made into a sweet drink by soaking its flowers. The wood from the bark has also be used for making boorna-wangkiny (message sticks), which have traditionally been used as tools for communication between different Noongar mobs, as a way to announce upcoming cultural events, ceremonies or even to spread notice of recent deaths . Spiritual significance is tied to Pudjak as its materials are used in preparation for initiation ceremonies. The seed casing of the Pudjak are made into an ash, rubbed il the skin wer used for body scarring, while the bushes slender needles are used to imprint the pigment into the flesh.
The Pudjak provides an array of important materials for Noongar cultural practices including food consumption, intercommunication wer spiritual ceremonies. As the Darlmoorluk's role is keny of communication between the use of the Pudjak wer Noongar, the jerda safeguards an array of practices in her culturally salient role as custodian wer protector.The Darlmoorluk signifies the interconnectedness between Noongar boodjar wer the cultural practices of Noongar people.
The following sources were used in reference to Noongar Wangkiny (Language):
- Bindon, P & Chadwick, R 2011, A Nyoongar wordlist: from the south-west of Western Australia, Western Australian Museum, Welshpool.
- Collard, M, Harben, S & van den Berg, R 2004, Nidja Beeliar Boodjar Noonookurt Nyininy: A Nyungar interpretive history of the use of boodjar (country) in the vicinity of Murdoch University, Murdoch University. Available from: http://wwwmcc.murdoch.edu.au/multimedia/nyungar/menu9.htm.
- South West Aboriginal Boodjar & Sea Council 2016, Kaartdijin Noongar-Noongar Knowledge: sharing Noongar Culture. Available from: http://www.noongarculture.org.au/.
Ngiyan waarnk - References
- Department of Environment and Conservation 2007, Fauna Note No. 22: Australian Ringneck, Government of Western Australia, Perth
- Sealin Garlett cited in Collard, M, Harben, S & van den Berg, R 2004, Nidja Beeliar Boodjar Noonookurt Nyininy: A Nyungar interpretive history of the use of boodjar (country) in the vicinity of Murdoch University, Murdoch University. Available from: http://wwwmcc.murdoch.edu.au/multimedia/nyungar/menu9.htm. [31 October 2016].
- Patricia Baines cited in Collard et al. 2004
- Peter Hancock. Ancient tales of Perth's fascinating birds. Sydney Morning Herald. Published 5 April 2014. Retrieved 6 January 2017
- Yalakitj cited in Collard et al. 2004
- Yelakitj Moorr Nyungar Association Incorporated 2008, ‘Workshops: Nyungar know how’, Available from: http://home.iprimus.com.au/hecatej/yelakitj/knowhow.html. [ 27 October 2016]
- Harben, S, Collard, L & Stasiuk, G & Nelson, D 2008, Avon Basin Noongar Heritage and Cultural Significance of Natural Resources, vol. 1, Murdoch University, Perth