Tra­di­tion bot­tled up in bush-rub range

Pilbara News - - News - Tom Zaun­mayr

March flies are the bane of every Pil­bara per­son’s ex­is­tence af­ter rains left lo­cals with a choice of cak­ing on the Bush­man in­sect re­pel­lent to avoid get­ting bit­ten or lath­er­ing up with top­i­cal steroid creams to numb the itch­ing if they run the gaunt­let of wear­ing no pro­tec­tion out­side.

Tra­di­tional own­ers never had chemical sprays or “sci­en­tif­i­cally proven” lo­tions but that doesn’t mean they were left liv­ing mis­er­able bite-rid­den lives. For the in­dige­nous peo­ple, where na­ture causes the prob­lem, na­ture also pro­vides the so­lu­tion.

Kur­ruma woman Josie Alec has started putting that nat­u­ral cure in jars to sell through her Indi­jiarts Cul­tural Creative­ness busi­ness in Bul­garra.

Mrs Alec said the na­tive “bush rub” sourced from lo­cal plants could help pre­vent March fly bites if ap­plied be­fore head­ing out and numbed itch­ing af­ter be­ing bit­ten.

“I’ve had a lot of bites and frights and ba­si­cally I use this stuff on my­self so I know it is at a point where I can get it out there,” she said. “Peo­ple of­ten for­get where the phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal comes from — it comes from a plant.

“This knowl­edge was given to me in a very spir­i­tual way from my old fel­las.

“For me to now be shar­ing what I know is done out of love, be­cause that is how it was shared to me.”

Mrs Alec has also bot­tled a na­tive bush rub, which she claims heals sore­ness and pain.

Kur­ruma woman Josie Alec with her bush reme­dies. Pic­ture: Tom Zaun­mayr

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