Aurukun is one of the larger communities in the Cape with a population of approximately 1200. Most residents are Traditional owners of the shire and surrounding lands. There are 5 spiritual clan groups: Apalech, Winchanam, Wanam, Chara and Puutch. There are 15 outstations that are occupied during the dry season.

one feature in common with many other Indigenous communities is a very stable (immobile) population. Many Aurukun residents have little opportunity to move away from the area – many lack recognised education or training and to do so would also deprive them of their family and clan supports.


The graphs below are based on published ABs Census 2006 data. They contrast statistics from the Aurukun Indigenous Community, the Aurukun Non-Indigenous Community and the whole Queensland population.

There are interesting contrasts in relation to age distribution, especially:

» The very young age of the Aurukun Indigenous population;
» The relative size of the “working age” and “dependant age” populations (comparing those ages between 15 and 64 with the sum of the younger and older age-groups);
» And the relative size of the “elder” age-group (those aged 45 of more compared with the younger age-group). The Aurukun Non-Indigenous population primarily comprises persons recruited into the area for a specific job. In most cases the characteristics of this group are closer to the “Queensland” population than the “Aurukun Indigenous” population.


Over 50% of the Aurukun population was under 25 in 2006, compared to less than 35% of the Queensland population. on the other hand less than 17% of the Aurukun population was over 44 years of age compared to over 37% of Queenslanders. only 3.07% of the Aurukun population was over 65 years of age, compared to 12.37% of Queenslanders.