Katarapko: Oral History of Kingsley Abdulla


Katarapko: Oral History of Kingsley Abdulla


An interview in three parts with Kingsley Abdulla.

Kingsley is from the Gerard Aboriginal community in South Australia. Born in 1971, he has always lived on the river; camping with family and extended family, a time for Elders to educate the younger generations about Country. Kingsley shares his knowledge of a changing and interconnected landscape.

Kingsley talks about: teaching family to swim and fish; yabbying methods; a period when Catfish species were rare; salinity (water and ground table) issues and low water levels; lack of ‘decent’ floods; Aboriginal grave sites and culture, native bushes, and native vegetables impacted by environmental degradation (e.g. traditional medicinal methods); the role of wetlands and back creeks (backwaters) as nurseries for all animals; the impact of Willow tree removal on Murray Cod and Callop; different types of soil in the area; changes observed in water colour; hybrid knowledge systems (incorporating Western into Aboriginal), and the desire to learn from each other. Also mentioned: snake species; water birds; vegetation; Crown Land.

Indigenous terms for fish species discussed:
Murray cod - Gadu, Pondi’s Gadu;
Yellowbelly - Thaigai; Pilaki
Catfish - Gaigai;
Bony bream: Thukeri
Silver Bream - Tookaree;
Silver Perch - Bungi.

One of the images in the collection includes a book called 'Tucker' by Ian Abdulla (1947-2011). It is a children's illustrated book about an Aboriginal boy who grows up along the Murray River, when bush tucker was plentiful.


Heather Goodall
Jodi Frawley


University of Technology, Sydney


Murray-Darling Basin Authority
NSW Department of Primary Industries - NSW Fisheries


Copyright University of Technology, Sydney


Book image attribution: Abdulla, Ian W. (1994). Tucker. Norwood, South Australia Omnibus Books see details...



Access Rights

Open access



Jodi Frawley


Kingsley Abdulla


Lake Bonney, SA


Part 1 00:18:21
Part 2 00:03:00
Part 3 00:01:04

Item Relations

This Item Is Part Of Item: Katarapko Creek
This Item Was Created By Item: Prof. Heather Goodall
Item: Dr Jodi Frawley
This Item Has Provenance Information Item: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Data Archive (ATSIDA)
Item: State Library of New South Wales
This Item References The Subject Item: Golden Perch
Item: Murray Cod

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