Four days of wonder began with the opening event of EK’s Between the Tides: Discovering the Intertidal Marine Life of Broome. WA Museum scientists joined Traditional Owners, local artists and citizen scientists in a celebration held at the Mangrove Hotel.

Between the Tides offered a series of public presentations, an art and photography exhibition, and early morning field trips to the mangroves, reefs and mudflats around Broome.

“What was initially planned as a coming together of experts to create a book identifying the fascinating intertidal creatures of the area has become so much more, with an enthusiastic display of community interest in the precious coast and waterways of Broome,” said Victoria de Bruyn, Environs Kimberley’s Seagrass monitoring guru.

Young child stands in front of a wall of marine artworks

“There’s a sense of community ownership of the mangroves, mud flats, seagrass meadows, and intertidal reefs around Rubibi (Broome). The citizen science project monitoring the seagrass of Roebuck Bay, coordinated by EK, has been running for 17 years, with the help of generous volunteers from the Broome community. It has inspired this interest.”

“The intertidal landscape here is globally significant. It stores huge amounts of blue carbon and acts as an early warning sentinel for the health of Roebuck Bay and the effects of things like climate change and pollution,” said Ms de Bruyn.

Bart Pigram presents by Michael Torres

Against a backdrop of marine art and photography, Bart Pigram gave a presentation on Two-way Science to a full house of participants.

“Two-way science, connecting Aboriginal ecological knowledge with Western science, is a powerful way to learn and pass on knowledge that’s been handed down for millennia. It’s a respectful way of learning and it’s great to be working in partnership with EK to take it into the community,” said Mr Pigram.

Victoria de Bruyn and art by Michael Torres BTT Opening

WA Museum scientists, (Jenelle Richie, Andrew Hosie, Corey Whisson and David Juszkiewicz) each spoke, showing sets of images titled, ‘Amazing Molluscs’, ‘Collecting and Fieldwork’, ‘Preparing a Lioness Skeleton’ and, what was obvious to the enthusiastic crowd, ‘Western Australia is special’.

Cory Whisson talks to a projection showing types of molluscs

The evening finished with live music from the multi-talented, Bart and Eric Pigram, the Middle Piggies duo.

Between the Tides Art and Photographic Exhibition (Argyle Room) showed watercolour works by Tom Montgomery and Cora Lou, and photographs by Bart Pigram, Sharmaine Donnelly, Rebecca Hayes and other citizen scientists.

Between the Tides was supported by Coast West, the WA Museum, the Mangrove Hotel, Tom Montgomery Art, Nyamba Buru Yawuru, the Broome Community Seagrass Monitoring Project, Narlijia Experiences Broome, the Roebuck Bay Working Group, the Department of Education: Two-Way Science, the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation, and Attractions – Parks and Wildlife Services.

A blue ringed octopus sculpture with curled legs sits on blue cloth

Banner: Jenelle Richie, WA Museum, presents to a full house at the Between the Tides Opening event

Early arrival to the event stands in front of a wall of marine artwork

Bart Pigram, Two-Way Science Initiative Principle Consultant, speaking about Nagulagun Roebuck Bay 

Viewing the fascinating creatures

Cory Whisson, WA Museum, talks to the Amazing molluscs projection

Anne Schmock's blue ring octopus sculpture

All photos: Michael Torres

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