Walk with us through one of the Top End's magnificent monsoon forests, in Kakadu National Park, learning about the plants, animals and Kundjeyhmi culture along the way.
DIANE LUCAS grew up exploring the bush in New South Wales. She moved to Kakadu in her late twenties. There she worked as a schoolteacher on an Aboriginal outstation and in turn was taught many things about the bush. From 1991 to 1996, Diane worked on a research project in Kakadu, documenting traditional resources on the South Alligator River floodplain and surrounds. She was encouraged by the elders to write about the land and get stories to children. They have supported her efforts as an educator with her children's books, the first being Walking with the Seasons in Kakadu. Since then she has had six other publications. She now lives only two hours from Kakadu, with her husband, and maintains a close relationship with the people and country of Kakadu. She and her husband travel in northern Australia and Africa doing botanical and fire ecology work. Diane is inspired by wild landscapes and the cultural context of these places, and the way children explore and play in wild habitats with such ease. She does much of her writing as she travels and walks in the bush.
BEN TYLER is a Bininj entrepreneur and founder of bush food brand Kakadu Kitchen. He currently lives in Darwin on Larrakia country, studying business at Charles Darwin University. On his breaks he returns home to Kakadu to visit his mum and family at their remote family outstation at Patonga Homestead, located beside the Jim Jim Creek in Kakadu National Park. Ben loves gardening with his mum Jessie, and both were very happy when his sister Mandy discovered her green thumb during the Northern Territory's Covid-19 lockdowns in 2020. Mandy now teaches her grandsons Anthony and Tyrese to love gardening too. The Kakadu billabong family community enjoy growing many types of tropical fruits and vegetables like pawpaw, banana, tomatoes, broccoli, citrus trees, mangoes, cashews, custard apples, tamarind and bush foods like red apple, white apple and native lemongrass. The community includes close relatives from Tiwi Islands and has always been a place that welcomes family, friends and visitors into their busy, noisy, joyful billabong home in Kakadu.
An accomplished artist, EMMA LONG has exhibited regularly in group and solo exhibitions across the Northern Territory. Her passion for creative arts has led her to work as an art educator in secondary schools as well as pursue a Bachelor of Visual Arts, a Certificate in Printmaking and a Graduate Diploma of Education. She is inspired by the fresh, raw beauty of nature and feels most at home in the bush with a brush in hand. Emma lives in Darwin with her husband and four children and continues to work as an illustrator and an art educator.