Tiwi Land Council


Tiwi Land Area

The 60 kilometres of water between Darwin and the Tiwi Islands have provided a useful barrier in permitting the Tiwi people largely unrestricted use of their own land over many centuries. Bathurst and Melville Islands were proclaimed an Aboriginal Reserve on the 4th of December 1912. The total land area is almost 780.000 hectares. Melville Island is the second largest islands off the Australian mainland and spans 570,000 hectares. Bathurst comprises 210,000 hectares.

Our Island home is 60 kms across the Arafura Sea north of Darwin. Bathurst and Melville Island and five smaller islands total 800,000 hectares and include a coastline of 1016 kms held under free-hold title by our 2000 landowners.

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Population growth currently at 2.5% is attributable to improved health care and lower infant mortality. We have managed our land sustainable through 6000 years of separation from mainland Australia. Our sustainable lives today rely upon land use capable of employing our 900 strong workforce and resourcing our market driven Tiwi economy through the determination and vision of our landowners.