Nijilidjong / daringyan (stingray) hiding in the sand
Nijilidjong / daringyan (stingray) hiding in the sand, walimburra (shark) lurking overhead. Image: Selina Sky
© Selina Sky

Ages: Recommended for 16+

First Nations knowledge systems and cultural practices have been at the forefront of conservation for over 60,000 years. Join leading Indigenous ecologist, Dr Chels Marshall, as she discusses stories and practices of First Nations peoples and their deep connection to the ocean and marine life. Discover how, for some clan groups, identity and community are tied to the ocean. Learn how signs from the land and sea have been used to predict shark behaviours and have informed sustainable relationships with marine life.

Enjoy a drink and canapes on arrival before Chels delves into the world of sharks and unpacks why conserving cultural knowledge systems is so important for their survival.

Following the talk, explore the AM’s Sharks exhibition where a dedicated shark scientist will share their research and be on hand to answer your questions.



Dr Chels Marshall

Leading Indigenous systems ecologist Chels Marshall, a Gumbaynggirr saltwater woman  from Nambucca Heads.
Leading Indigenous systems ecologist Chels Marshall, a Gumbaynggirr saltwater woman from Nambucca Heads. Image: Abram Powell
© Australian Museum

Chels Marshall is a Gumbaynggirr woman and Traditional Owner from the Baga Baga/Ngambaa Clan - Janingbirriny (Northern NSW). Over the last 20 years Chels has been actively involved locally, nationally and internationally in increasing the capacity of Indigenous people to participate in biodiversity management, planning and monitoring though her involvement with the United Nations and Western Parkland City Authority and International Union for Conservation of Nature.

Chels has extensive experience in environmental science and management and has completed a PhD on traditional knowledge systems and climate change in the Pacific, with the School of Asia Pacific Affairs at the Australian National University.


Sharks is proudly supported by the NSW Government through the Blockbuster Funding initiative.




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View our full COVID-19 safety information here.