The Shire of Mornington is a local government area in north-west Queensland, Australia. The Shire covers Mornington Island and neighbouring islands in the Wellesley Islands group in the Gulf of Carpentaria. The Shire Council employees are 93% local indigenous residents.

The Shire Council has 22 islands which are inhabited by the Lardil, Yangkaal, Kaiadilt and Gangalidda people. It has abundant flora and fauna including tea trees, mangroves and sea oaks. The beaches are filled with a variety of marine life consisting of turtles and the endangered dugong. It is a highly sought-after fishing and diving area with unspoiled beaches and emphasis on eco-tourism.[2]

The administrative centre for the shire is the township of Gununa, on Mornington Island. In 2001 the Shire had a population of 934 of which 88.2% were Aboriginal.[3] By the 2016 census, the population of the shire had risen to 1,143; with 86.1% of residents being Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander.[4]


Lardil (also known as Gununa, Ladil) is an Australian Aboriginal language spoken on Mornington Island and the Northern Wellesley Islands, within the local government boundaries of the Mornington Shire.[5]

Yukulta (also known as Ganggalida) is an Australian Aboriginal language. The Yukulta language region is the Gulf Country including the local government areas of the Aboriginal Shire of Doomadgee and Shire of Mornington.[6]

The shire was formed in 1978 as a result of the Queensland Government's decision to take over control of the islands from the Uniting Church. The local community sought the assistance of the Federal Government to overturn the decision. The establishment of self-governance for the community under a Local Government model was the result of the ensuing discussions.[7]


The Mornington Shire Council does not operate any public libraries.[8]


  • 2008 - 2012: Cecil Goodman [9]
  • 2012 - 2020: Bradley Wilson [10][11]
  • 2020 - present: Kyle Hector Yanner [12]


  1. ^ a b "3218.0 – Regional Population Growth, Australia, 2017-18: Population Estimates by Local Government Area (ASGS 2018), 2017 to 2018". Australian Bureau of Statistics. Australian Bureau of Statistics. 27 March 2019. Retrieved 25 October 2019. Estimated resident population, 30 June 2018.
  2. ^ "About the Island(s)". Mornington Shire Council.
  3. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (9 March 2006). "Mornington (S) (Local Government Area)". 2001 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 30 June 2007.
  4. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Mornington (S)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 5 October 2018. Edit this at Wikidata
  5. ^ CC-BY-icon-80x15.png This Wikipedia article incorporates CC-BY-4.0 licensed text from: "Indigenous Languages of Queensland". State Library of Queensland. State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 30 January 2020.
  6. ^ CC-BY-icon-80x15.png This Wikipedia article incorporates CC-BY-4.0 licensed text from: "Yukulta". Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages map. State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 28 January 2020.
  7. ^ James Cook University - Mount Isa Centre for Rural and Remote Health Archived 27 September 2006 at the Wayback Machine - Mornington Island page. Retrieved 21 December 2006.
  8. ^ "Mornington Shire". Public Libraries Connect. State Library of Queensland. 3 April 2014. Archived from the original on 5 February 2018. Retrieved 6 February 2018.
  9. ^ "2008 Mornington Shire - Mayoral Election - Election Summary". Retrieved 4 December 2017.
  10. ^ "2012 Mornington Shire - Mayoral Election - Election Summary". Retrieved 4 December 2017.
  11. ^ "2016 Mornington Shire Council - Mayoral Election - Election Summary". Retrieved 4 December 2017.
  12. ^ "2020 Local Government Elections: Saturday, 28 March 2020". Electoral Commission of Queensland. 2020. Archived from the original on 16 June 2020. Retrieved 16 June 2020.

Coordinates: 20°43′29″S 139°29′37″E / 20.72472°S 139.49361°E / -20.72472; 139.49361