The adjoining hinterland, a laterised plateau of Cretaceous sediments, slopes down gently towards the coast and juts out as a succession of small promontories onto the saltflats.
Visibility varied across the study area: from 90 per cent on open saltflats, to 30-40 per cent in densely vegetated, unburnt areas such as monsoon vine thickets, or around creeks and waterholes.
Based on information from the MAGNT sites register, and previous archaeological experience in the Darwin region, areas of high archaeological potential, such as the hinterland margins, around tidal rivers and creeks, and the saltflats were intensively surveyed.
The majority of the shell middens are situated on the saltflats between the hinterland promontories and the mangrove zone (see Figure 3).
Higher-density surface scatters of stone artefacts and shells, with diameters ranging from 10 to 100 m, are found on the saltflats edge or in among the network of mangrove-lined tidal channels.