Desert channels: the impulse to conserve

Desert channels: the impulse to conserve Edited Book

  • Author(s): Libby Robin, Chris Dickman, Mandy Martin
  • Published: 2011
  • Publisher: CSIRO Publishing
  • ISBN: 9780643097490

Abstract: This book is the centrepiece of a project that combines book, art exhibitions and web-based educational materials exploring the distinctive Desert Channels country in south-western Queensland. The region is the main source of all the desert rivers in arid Australia, and its rivers drain into Lake Eyre. The region includes the Channel Country and adjacent Simpson Desert and extends north-east of Longreach to include Mound Springs country. Conservation here is portrayed in four dimensions: place, landscape, biodiversity and livelihood. These four parts each carry four chapters. The '4x4' structure was conceived by acclaimed artist, Mandy Martin, who has produced suites of artworks over three seasons in this format with commentaries, which make the interludes between parts. Martin's work offers an aesthetic framework of place, which shapes how we see the region. Explores the impulse to protect the varied biodiversity of the region, and its Aboriginal, pastoral and prehistoric heritage, including some of Australia's most important dinosaur sites. The work of Alice Duncan-Kemp, the region's most significant literary figure, is highlighted. Even the sounds of the landscape are not forgotten: the book includes a CD by Alaskan radio journalist Richard Nelson talking to ecologist Steve Morton at Ocean Bore in the Simpson Desert country. The twitter of zebra finches accompanies the interview. Contents: Pt. 1. Place: 1. Arriving in the Desert Channels country / Chris Dickman 2. Alice Duncan-Kemp (Pinningarra) and the history of the frontier / Tom Griffiths 3. Connecting with our land / Karen Emmott 4. Pituri country / Mike Letnic and Luke Keogh Interlude I. Landscape studies 2007: environmental projects and the impulse to conserve / Mandy Martin Pt. 2. Landscape: 5. The story of our land revealed through plants / Glenda Wardle 6. Mystery and marvel: the invertebrate animal world / Steve Morton 7. Channel country rivers: the pulse of life / Julian Reid 8. Artesian springs / Rod Fensham Interlude II. Landscape studies 2008: aesthetic evaluation as an environmental tool / Mandy Martin Pt. 3. Biodiversity: 9. Mammals and birds: life on the move / Chris Dickman and Max Tischler 10. Reptiles, amphibians and fish: going with the flow / Chris Dickman and Mike Letnic 11. Dragons, diprotodons, dinosaurs and dust: 150 years of Desert Channels prehistory / Scott Hocknull and Alex Cook 12. Creating a herbarium for Cravens Peak / Max Bourke Interlude III. Landscape studies 2009: painting in place / Mandy Martin Pt. 4: Livelihood: 13. Conserving desert Australian livelihoods / Mark Stafford Smith 14. The forum is a campfire, the river is a story / Luke Keogh 15. Production lands, philanthropy and biodiversity / Guy Fitzhardige 16. Conservation science: here and beyond Interlude IV. Listening to the land: Encounter documentary of zebra finches at Ocean Bore (CD at back of book) / Richard Nelson and Steve Morton

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Libby Robin, Chris Dickman, Mandy Martin, 2011, Desert channels: the impulse to conserve, Edited Book, viewed 22 October 2021,

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