The technology, known as LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging), scans through thick scrub and bush to identify and map the terrain, revealing features unseen by the naked eye.

Budj Bim, on Gunditjmara Country in south-western Victoria, is one of the world’s finest examples of ancient aquaculture and hydraulic engineering.

The collaboration between the Gunditj Mirring Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation and Land Use Victoria represented a ‘world-first’ opportunity to map and visualise the natural and man-made landscape over Budj Bim using LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) remote sensing technology.

Once captured, the full ownership of this data and spatial information was transferred over to the Gunditj Mirring Traditional Owner Aboriginal Corporation.

The data obtained has already helped identify groups of stone hut bases under vegetation, and to discover an extension of a fish trap complex in the aquaculture system, about 115 metres long. This technology has expanded knowledge about one of the oldest and most extensive aquaculture systems in the world.

This partnership – and investment – is one of the ways we are working to enable Aboriginal talent-building, leadership and decision-making, as well as data sovereignty, as part of the Victorian Government’s commitment to progressing Aboriginal self-determination.

Land Use Victoria is one of several areas of the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) to be involved in Budj Bim projects. DELWP is proud to be telling the story of our partnership during NAIDOC Week 2020.

Page last updated: 07/05/22