Police say an Australian woman has been charged with murder in the deaths of seven of her children and her niece whose bodies were found inside her home.

Mersane Warria was charged with eight counts of murder on Sunday in a bedside hearing at a hospital where she is recovering from stab wounds.

Queensland Police Detective Inspector Bruno Asnicar says the children ranged in age from 2 to 14 years old.

Police were called to the home in the Cairns suburb of Manoora on Friday morning after receiving a report of a woman with serious injuries. When they got to the house, they found the children's bodies.

Autopsies are being conducted to determine how they died.