Minilya River

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Name origin: Aboriginal: meaning unknown
Country Australia
State Western Australia
Region Gascoyne
Source Black Range (Western Australia)
 - elevation 275 m (902 ft)
 - coordinates 23°57′53″S 115°27′11″E / 23.96472°S 115.45306°E / -23.96472; 115.45306
Mouth Lake MacLeod
 - elevation 0 m (0 ft)
 - coordinates 23°56′37″S 113°51′25″E / 23.94361°S 113.85694°E / -23.94361; 113.85694Coordinates: 23°56′37″S 113°51′25″E / 23.94361°S 113.85694°E / -23.94361; 113.85694
Length 269 km (167 mi)
Basin 52,662 km2 (20,333 sq mi)
Discharge for mouth
 - average 44,847 m3/s (1,583,757 cu ft/s)

The Minilya River is a river in the Gascoyne region of Western Australia.

Location and features[edit]

The headwaters of the river rise in the south-west of the Black Range and flows in a generally westerly direction, joined by three minor tributaries; Minilya River South, Bee Well Creek and Naughton Creek. The river is crossed by the North West Coastal Highway near the Minilya Roadhouse and then later discharges into Lake MacLeod. The area is semi-arid with a landscape of woodland and scrub used for sheep and cattle grazng. The Minilya River descends 278 metres (912 ft) over its 269-kilometre (167 mi) course.[2]

The name of the river is aboriginal in origin but its meaning is unknown. The first Europeans to discover the river were the explorers who named it; Charles Brockman and George Hamersley who visited the area in 1876.[1] Brockman and Hamersley also named the Lyndon River and Brockman later took up a 40,000 acres (16,187 ha) lease known as Boolathana then another property, Minilya Station.[5]

The traditional owners of the area are the Tharrkari and Baiyungu peoples.[6]

The soils throughout the river basin are eroded and the regional ecology is degraded as a result of cattle grazing from the numerous pastoral stations found through the area. As a result, fencing has been installed through the length of the river, water tanks and troughs installed and establishment of new grazing yards.[7]

The Minilya is prone to occasional flooding following heavy rain events as it did in 1905.[8] More flooding occurred 1918 when Minilya Station recorded 7.58 inches (193 mm) in just over two months isolating the homestead.[9] Further flooding occurred in 1942 with many station homesteads being left isolated.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Western Australian Land Information Authority. "History of river names". Archived from the original on 16 February 2015. Retrieved 6 June 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Map of Minilya River, WA". Bonzle Digital Atlas of Australia. 2008. Retrieved 6 February 2009. 
  3. ^ "Water Resources Overview". Australian Natural Resources Atlas. 2009. Retrieved 10 June 2010. 
  4. ^ "River Monitoring Stations – Minilya River". Department of Water. Government of Western Australia. 2010. Retrieved 6 June 2010. 
  5. ^ "Pioneers of the Gascoyne". The West Australian. Perth: National Library of Australia. 9 February 1935. p. 5. Retrieved 28 September 2013. 
  6. ^ "Ausanthrop – Australian Aboriginal Tribal Database". 2010. Retrieved 6 June 2010. 
  7. ^ "Rangelands – Case Study – Protection and Conservation of the Minilya/Lyndon River Basin" (PDF). 2008. Retrieved 10 June 2010. 
  8. ^ "Heavy rain in the north". The Daily News. Perth: National Library of Australia. 27 December 1905. p. 3. Retrieved 28 September 2013. 
  9. ^ "Minilya Station". The Northern Times. Carnarvon, Western Australia: National Library of Australia. 9 March 1918. p. 5. Retrieved 28 September 2013. 
  10. ^ "Carnarvon Isolated". The Daily News. Perth: National Library of Australia. 10 February 1942. p. 9. Retrieved 28 September 2013.