Minjambuta, Moths and Migration
The Minjambuta are believed to be the Aboriginal people who regularly visited
the Mount Buffalo Plateau. In the winter, the Minjambuta lived in the warmer
valleys, below the snowline. Then, in the early summer they would being their
annual journey up into the
high country, to feast on the abundant Bogong Moth. It was a time for feasting, ceremony and socialising.
The Bogong Moth (Agrotis infusa) begins life as caterpillars (also known
as cutworms), feeding on the winter plains west of the Great Dividing Range (inland NSW and Queensland).
The summer high temperatures make the plains unfavourable for the Bogongs, so
the adult moths emerge in spring to begin their migration to the cooler high
country of the Great Dividing Range (usually above 1,700 metres) where they
congregate in caves around the area of Mount Bogong in the Bogong National Park.
Over the summer period (November to February), the adults remain congregated in
the rock crevices in massive numbers, remaining dormant, whilst living off their
fat reserves. The approach of winter, sees them migrate north to mate, lay their
eggs, and then die, ending their annual cycle. The eggs then pupate in a cocoon
in their burrow beneath the soil, with the adults emerging about four weeks
The Horn (1,723 m) is the highest
point of Mount Buffalo and during these migration periods, the Bogong Moth can
be seen in their millions. As you climb to the summit, contemplate both the Minjambuta’s
journeys and the Bogong Moth’s migration to this unique place.