Shire of Mingenew
|Area||~1,939 square kilometres, located ~370 km north of Perth.|
|Towns||Mingenew, Nangetty and Yandanooka.|
|Average Temperature||Mean daily maximum temperature over 30 years 1990 – 2019
37.5°C (Jan) and 19.7°C (Jul).
|Annual Rainfall||Average annual rainfall over 30 years 1990 – 2019 355 mm (BoM 2020).|
|ABS Profile||Mingenew ABS profile|
|Shire Website||Shire of Mingenew|
Around 455 people live in the Shire of Mingenew, more than half of whom (~280 people) live in the town of Mingenew itself (ABS 2016).
The population in the Shire of Mingenew decreased by 7% between the last census in 2011 and the most recent census in 2016, and is projected to decrease by a further 25% by 2031 (DPLH 2016).
Approximately 7% of residents of the Shire of Mingenew were born overseas and approximately 6% are of Aboriginal and / or Torres Strait Islander descent.
Estimates of the resident populations as at 30 June are released annually for Local Government Areas (LGAs) in Australia by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The estimates are generally revised 12 months later and final estimates are available after the following census. Visit the ABS website for further details.
The economy of the Shire of Mingenew depends primarily on broad acre agriculture and the services that support farming in the area. Local farming includes the production of cereal crops (wheat, canola, lupins, oats) and livestock (primarily sheep). Wildflower tourism is a small but growing area of the economy.
The main land uses in the Shire of Mingenew are agriculture and nature conservation.
Mingenew Nature Reserve
The Mingenew Nature Reserve covers ~454 ha and is located on the outskirts of Mingenew. The reserve includes a popular lookout point at Depot Hill and forms part of the Yamatji conservation estate.
Coalseam Conservation Park
The Coalseam Conservation Park covers ~990 ha and has a rich history as the site of the first coal mine in Western Australia. The geology is interesting and exposed coal seams can still be seen in the cliff faces. The Park is surrounded by cleared farmland, providing an important refuge for wildlife and plants, and is well known for its seasonal wildflower displays.
The geology of the shire is complex. The eastern portion of the shire lies on the Yarragadee formation, formed during the Jurassic period from sedimentary and volcanic rock and comprised of fine to coarse grained sandstone interbedded with shale. The south eastern scarp of the Yarragadee formation is dominated by the Otorowiri formation, formed during the Cretaceous period from sedimentary and volcanic rock and comprised of siltstone, shale and sandstone. The underlying geology is the Parmelia group, which was formed during the Cretaceous period from sedimentary and volcanic rock and consists mainly of sandstone.
The Mingenew formation, formed during the Permian period, underlies Mingenew town and consisting of fine to medium grained sandstone and siltstone. The north eastern portion of the shire lies on Holmwood Shale, also formed during the Permian period from sedimentary and volcanic rock and consisting of grey shale, well bedded clayey siltstone and interbedded limestone. Large areas of the shire lie of the Nangetty formation, formed during the Carboniferous-Permian period from sedimentary and volcanic rock and consisting of diamictite, shale and sandstone.
The south eastern portion of the shire lies on the Yandanooka Group and Mullingarra Gneiss. Mullingarra Gneiss was formed during the Paleoproterozoic era from igneous and metamorphic rocks and consists of quartz feldspar, gneiss and sedimentary siliciclastics. The Yandanooka group formed during the Neoproterozoic era from volcanic and sedimentary rock and consists of sedimentary and volcanic rock. The geology underlying the boundary between Mingenew and Morawa includes High Cliff Sandstone, Irwin River Coal Measures, the Caryginia Formation and the Coomberdale subgroup.
Soils are deep, siliceous and sandy soils in much of the western portion of the shire. Soils in the eastern portion of the shire are clayey and the soils on the boundary between Mingenew and Morawa tend to be red shallow loams and red to brown hardpan soils. The landscape is characterised by undulating sandplains with lateritic breakaways.
The shire is located within the Tallering (YAL02) and Merredin (AVW01) IBRA sub-regions and is characterised by open woodlands and proteaceous scrub. The only Threatened Ecological Community known to occur in the shire is the Clay Flats Assemblages of the Irwin River, which is presumed destroyed.
Gascoyne Groundwater Area
The Gascoyne Groundwater Area extends north to Kalbarri and bounds the Arrowsmith Groundwater Area east to pastoral country. The largest groundwater aquifer occurs in the Yarragadee Formation, which has an estimated yield of 22.5 million m³/year. Groundwater from fractured rock aquifers in the eastern, inland part of the region is predominantly saline, with poor yields.
Drainage Basin Length (km) Catchment Area (km2) Average Stream Salinity (mg/L) Key Characteristics Greenough 160 6,072 3000-35000 Originates east of Mullewa, and has middle and lower reaches with perennial ﬂow due to discharge from the groundwater systems. The river enters the ocean at Dongara and the mouth of the river is a coastal lagoon system, which is blocked by a sandbar for most of the year.