Indigenous Australians are the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of Australia, descended from groups that existed in Australia and surrounding islands prior to European colonisation. The time of arrival of the first Indigenous Australians is a matter of debate among researchers. The earliest definitely human remains found in Australia are those of Mungo Man LM3 and Mungo Lady, which have been dated to around 50,000 years. Recent archaeological evidence from the analysis of charcoal and artefacts revealing human use has pushed this date back further to around 65,000. Luminescence dating has suggested habitation in Arnhem Land as far back as 60,000 years. Genetic research has inferred a date of habitation as early as 80,000 years. Other estimates have ranged up to 100,000 years and 125,000 years ago.
Although there are a number of commonalities between indigenous Aboriginal Australians, there is also a great diversity among different Indigenous communities and societies in Australia, each with its own mixture of cultures, customs and languages. In present-day Australia, these groups are further divided into local communities. At the time of initial European settlement, over 250 languages were spoken; it is currently estimated that 120 to 145 of these remain in use, but only 13 of these are not considered endangered.
The first inhabitants of Australia’s South West were the Aboriginal people, believed to have a connection with this land for almost 50,000 years. The aboriginal tribes of Australia’s South West enjoyed the abundant food and water found along the coastal plain. Conservationists by nature, they were semi-nomadic hunter-gatherers, who moved with the supply of food as the seasons changed, taking only what they needed to survive, maintaining a high regard for life and the land.
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