The Canning River was first sighted by Captain James Stirling in March 1827 two years before the founding of the Swan River Colony. It later because the economic focus of the new settlement due to emerging logging industry and was supplying timber to the world including the great train tracks of India.
The Aboriginal community whose ancestors fished and hunted there regard the river as sacred. Remains of former campsites date back many generations and stone chips found in the area are said to date back 5000 years.
A remarkable heritage listed relic of the convict era, the ’Convict’s Fence’ still exists in its waters. The fence extends over two thousand metres to form a silt barrier and was dug by hand using convict labor in 1866. It still prevents silt build up to this day.
Emanating from the Darling plateau, the river today provides drinking water for the State from its five dams and is an important habitat for flora and fauna. Recreation use includes fishing, canoeing, water skiing, cruising and rowing.
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