Budj Bim Aquaculture Engineering Works (Lake Condah & Tyrendarra)


The Aboriginal Engineering works ar Budj Bim are very extrensive and were designed to trap, hold and grow eels which came up from the sea in huge numbers at specific times of the year. The structures are largely built from Basalt which is available in the quantity due to lava flows from nearby volcanoes in geologically recent times. The ruins are of great age and were used, maintaned and extended by the local Aborigines over thousands of years.

The structures at and near Lake Condah “comprise the remains of semi-circular stone-walled houses, cairns, free standing rock walls, stone-walled channels, and fish-traps and canals excavated into fractured and weathered basalt”.

As further mentioned by Coutts, “nor were they all small structures – some were more than 450 m long, greater than 0.5 m deep and around 0.5 m wide”; it is also mentioned that Dawson in 1881 described the construction of races and channels with clay embankments 0.6 – 1 m high and 250 – 300 m long.

It is these structures which led to an assessment of the whole infrastructure and led to this nomination for recognition as engineering heritage.


Marker Type

  • EHNL: Engineering Heritage National Landmark (from 2009)




Interpretation Panel