The first people to walk along the shores of northern Australia arrived more than 50,000 years ago.
New research shows just how many first people were needed to create a viable population in what is now Australia.
Karnatukul during excavation in 2014, note the square holes dug below the rock walls..
They were looking to study rock art at a remote desert site but what they found showed people had been using the place almost since the first people arrived in Australia.
Humans would have first seen Kata Tjuta very shortly after arriving in Australia 50,000 years ago.
Aboriginal Australians have effectively been on their country for as long as modern human populations have been outside of Africa. We have a limit as to how long ago that was: around 50,000 years.
It’s been 50 years since the find of burnt bones in ancient soil, eroded from deep in shoreline dune in NSW.
It's been half a century since Jim Bowler discovered Mungo Lady, which changed the course of Australian history. But now he says the find has fallen off the national radar, leaving a legacy of shame.
Sunset looking across Port Warrender to the Mitchell Plateau on the Kimberley coast. It is in Wunambal Gaambera country.
Mark Jones Films (with permission)
The first people to make it to Australia could have navigated their way by sea crossing, reaching the north-west coastline of the island continent more than 50,000 years ago.
Lake Mungo and the surrounding Willandra Lakes of NSW were established around 150,000 years ago.
New techniques for genetic analysis are helping us build more detailed and accurate stories about the ancient histories of the first Australians.
The view from Indonesia’s Rote Island towards Australia.
There is plenty of debate over what route was taken by the first people to reach Australia. New research reveals a likely route through a now submerged chain of islands.
Lida Ajer cave - a small but well decorated front entrance.
The evidence of a much earlier presence of humans in Indonesia was found more than 100 years ago. But only now has the age of the fossil teeth been accurately dated.
Three main excavation squares within Boodie Cave.
Part of the land inhabited by some of the early Australians is now submerged, but details of their life is now revealed in an excavation on an island off the continent’s north-west coast.
On expedition with Norman Tindale and local Aboriginal group at a rock shelter at Bathurst Head (Thartali) in eastern Cape York Peninsula, 1927.
Photo by Herbert Hale/South Australian Museum, Archives Norman Tindale Collection (AA 338/5/4/41)
Aboriginal people stayed settled in places across Australia for 50,000 years until Europeans arrived, showing a strong connection with the land.
What it could have looked like when humans and megafauna lived together: a giant macropod
Procoptodon goliah in the foreground, while Thylacinus cynocephalus hunts for prey nearby. A herd of Zygomaturus can be see on the lake edge of the ancient Willandra system.
Illustration by Laurie Beirne
The extinction of the giant reptiles, marsupials and birds that once called Australia home has been the subject of much debate, including the role early Australians may have had on their fate.
Professor Eske Willerslev talks to Aboriginal elders in the Kalgoorlie area in southwestern Australia.
Preben Hjort, Mayday Film
New DNA research working with Indigenous Australians is answering many of the questions about when and where the First Australians emerged many thousands of years ago.
How likely is it that the Turnbull government, with its tiny majority, will make seriously hard decisions?
For the more modest aim of delivering steady, competent government – well, it's no wonder Malcolm Turnbull is raging.
The original excavation of Mungo Man, found near Lake Mungo in southwestern New South Wales, Australia.
Research first published in 2001 has been used to question of whether Aboriginal People were the First Australians. So why not re-test those results with improved techniques and equipment?