The Tracks App, designed by the Indigenous Desert Alliance (IDA), was initiated as part of the Bilby Blitz Programme, an IDA project hosted by the Central Land Council. The Tracks App is an ecological science App designed to support the involvement of Aboriginal people, particularly in arid and semi-arid regions of Australia. Tracking skills and animal knowledge developed and maintained by Aboriginal people for thousands of years are used by Indigenous Rangers to identify animals. Animal tracks and other signs enable their continued presence to be recorded which supports management of Country.

The Tracks App allows you to collect information on tracks and other sign (scats, diggings, burrows, bones, and feathers). Information will be used to map Country where native animals are found. With lots of Indigenous Ranger groups in remote areas, we will be able tell a better story on what is happening to animals in these areas of Australia.

Many people contributed to the App design and made comments on early drafts and prototypes, including Indigenous Rangers, Ranger Coordinators, Ranger support staff, and academics. The Indigenous Desert Alliance thanks our many partners involved in the conception, funding, development, and testing of The Tracks App.

The Tracks App was developed by the Atlas of Living Australia (see About the ALA here) and funded by the Commonwealth Department of Environment and Energy through the National Landcare Program. This project acknowledges the work of CyberTrackerTM in supporting track and sign data collection by Indigenous people and aims to develop those activities in Australia through this project.

About home screen artwork

The painting ‘Turkey Dreaming’ is by Biddy Yulngarri Jurrah/Long from Lajamanu Community, Warnayaka Art and Cultural Aboriginal Corporation. It shows a Bush Turkey (Australian Bustard, Ardeotis australis) tracks moving from place to place searching for insect food around a waterhole. The artwork is used under licence from the artist.

Tracking on Country

The Tracks App is currently only available to Aboriginal Ranger Groups. Please contact the Indigenous Desert Alliance or your local Aboriginal Ranger Group if you wish to be involved. Before going on Country, make sure that you have permission from Traditional Owners and other land custodians. By working with traditional owners, skilled trackers and Aboriginal Ranger Groups, all will gain more local knowledge about Tracking on Country. Please note some places may require an access and/or a research permit. Make sure that you always do things safely and follow the policies of your organisation.

How can people get involved?

The first time you use the Tracks App you need to register for a project online. Project creation will be trialled with Indigenous Ranger groups from the Indigenous Desert Alliance and Kimberley Land Council. However, other groups are welcome to register for a project.

For more information