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Katitjin | Stories

Nyitting YarnYeye YarnsWhen the Sea Levels RoseOrigin of Derbal Nara 1Origin of Derbal Nara 2

Boornyarri and the WaarkleKulbardi and WardongBullung and BullandLong Neck Turtles

Origin of Derbal Nara 2  - George Fletcher Moore

A Nyitting story, summarised by Moore, recounts how the islands were cut off from the mainland by the sea at Cockburn Sound.

The natives have a tradition that Rottnest, Carnac, and Garden Island, once formed part of the mainland, and that the intervening ground was thickly covered with trees; which took fire in some unaccountable way, and burned with such intensity that the ground split asunder with a great noise, and the sea rushed in between, cutting off these islands from the mainland.1

Click here to view an animation of the changes the Derbal Nara coastline has undergone in the last 8,000 years.

View photos of the changing coastline here.

Click on the thumbnails to view a photo gallery of the Derbal Nara coastline.

References

1. Moore 1884b:8 cited in Hallam, Fire and Hearth, 112.