Walalkara IPA

Walalkara IPA protects over 700,000 ha south of Fregon Community, and was declared in 2000.


The traditional owners of Walalkara IPA, Robin Kankapankatja and his wife Antjala and other family members were one of the first groups that recognised the importance of establishing an IPA to protect their country into the future.  They worked very hard with their family members to have the IPA declared in 2000.

Anangu tjuta from Walalkara have an unbroken connection to country, going back many, many generations. There are rock paintings, tjukurrpa and evidence of past ancestors across the IPA that are important markers for the Rangers today. Passing on traditional ecolological knowledge to the younger generations is an integral and implicit aspect of life on Walalkara. The elders were hopeful that the IPA would support the transfer of knowledge, necessary to meet the responsibilities of looking after country through visiting and monitoring important cultural sites. As Tjilpi Robin stated “This is the major land management work…Without the Tjukurpa there is nothing The main reason for looking after country is to look after miilmiilpa tjuta…. Whitefellas don’t know how to look after them. Only I know how to look after them.”   

Today, each year, up to 20 of their descendants and family members work on the IPA. The IPA protects over 700,000ha of almost pristine wilderness to the South West of Fregon Community. The area has never been grazed and is home to many endemic plants and a host of threatened species.

The vast ecological knowledge of the rangers is important to informing the management practices across the IPA. The land management work focuses on projects to protect species diversity. Key is limiting the impact of feral species including buffel grass and camels. Protecting endangered species such as malleefowl (nganamarra), marsupial mole (itjari itjari)  and  quongdong (wayanu) through monitoring and surveys are challenges that the Rangers face. Another important area of ranger responsibility is cleaning, maintaining and protecting rockholes. Clean water in the desert is an essential resource and it is therefore an important task taken on by Rangers.  Regular Patch burning is also undertaken so that country is protected from larger wildfires and regrowth is stimulated to provide food for animals and Anangu.

The Walalkara families are proud of their country and welcome opportunities to share it with others. If you would like to find out more contact APY Land Management on 89548111.