Numurkah (// new-MUR-kə) is a town in Victoria, Australia, located on the Goulburn Valley Highway, 37 kilometres (23 mi) north of Shepparton, in the Shire of Moira. At the 2017 census, Numurkah had a population of 4,768.
Melville St, the main street of Numurkah
|Population||4,768 (2017 census)|
|Elevation||108 m (354 ft)|
|LGA(s)||Shire of Moira|
The area was occupied by the Yorta Yorta people prior to European settlement. Squatters moved into the area from NSW in the late 1830s. After the pastoral runs were made available for farm selection, the township of Numurkah was surveyed in 1875, the Post Office opening 2 November 1878. The local railway station was opened on the Goulburn Valley railway in 1881, but has not seen any passenger services since 1993 when the train to Cobram was withdrawn. The station building remains in private ownership, and a footbridge crosses the line. Numurkah became the headquarters of the Murray Valley Soldier Settlement Area - one of the largest soldier settlements in Australia - after World War I. Under this scheme 700 ex-servicemen were given land to develop for agriculture.
The name is thought to be derived from an Aboriginal word meaning war shield, although a recent authority thinks that this is mistaken. The town hosts an art show in March, a fishing competition in April, and go-kart championships in September and a car show in December.
Other popular sports include: Numurkah Lawn Tennis Club, Lawn Bowls, Soccer, Gymnasium & an Outdoor Swimming Pool which is operated during the warmer months.
Biodiversity and natural features
Numurkah is a low lying town located on the floodplain of the Broken Creek. The Broken Creek flows into the Murray River just north of the township of Barmah. The riparian area adjacent to the creek has a dominant over-storey of Eucalyptus camaldulensis (Red Gum). Above the floodplain tree species include Eucalyptus microcarpa (Grey Box), Eucalyptus melliodora (Yellow Box) and Callitris glaucophylla (Murray Pine). There is a small roosting population of Grey-headed flying foxes (Pteropus poliocephalus)and Little Red flying foxes (Pteropus Scapulatus). These mega-bats are important pollinators of native tree species. Their diet is nectar, pollen, and fruit. The Little Red flying fox has translucent wings and eats nectar from flowers almost exclusively. Both have long tongues for getting deep into flowers. Numurkah also is home to many species of insect eating microbats (small bats) with the Goulds Wattled Bat being the most common. These small bats live in tree hollows and play an important role in insect control eating large quantities of insects each night.
In 2012 Numurkah had some devastating floods which saw a large portion of the town flood including the local hospital which was demolished as a result.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Numurkah (State Suburb)". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 3 December 2014.
- Macquarie Dictionary, Fourth Edition (2005). Melbourne, The Macquarie Library Pty Ltd. ISBN 1-876429-14-3
- Shawfactor. "Local history of Numurkah".
- Premier Postal History. "Post Office List". Retrieved 11 April 2008.
- Bob Whitehead (2008). Tocumwal Railway Centenary.
- Chris Banger (March 1997). "Rail Passenger Service Withdrawals Since 1960". Newsrail. Australian Railway Historical Society (Victorian Division). pp. 77–82.
- Marilyn Lake (1991). The limits of hope : soldier settlement in Victoria, 1915-1938.
- Thomas O'Callaghan (1918). Names of Victorian Railway Stations. Government Printer. ISBN 0-9580716-0-8. (2003 facsimile edition)
- Golf Select. "Numurkah". Retrieved 11 May 2009.