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Culture and heritage

Local Aboriginal people enjoyed the billabong's rich life-supporting wetland food supply. Shell middens (kitchen hearths), burials and scarred trees indicate a lifestyle celebrated on these banks for centuries.

Kings Billabong took its name from Captain James King, who navigated the Murray River and its tributaries in the late 19th century. The Chaffey Brothers, supported by Alfred Deakin who later became Prime Minister, selected Mildura (originally a sheep station) as a suitable location for Australia’s first irrigation settlement.

The reserve was logged until the 1950s to supply fuel for steam-powered paddleboats and pumps. There was also cattle grazing, cultivation and dried fruit rack sites in the reserve until 1989.