Baaka (Darling River) is a major branch of the Murray–Darling Basin, south-eastern Australia. The Baaka has been poisoned and dried out by colonisation over the years. Agricultural land use, environmental trauma, water use and restriction of flows have seen the rise of blue-green algal blooms and the devastation of cultural flows for Barkandji people. The Barkandji remember the Baaka as the site of the Menindee Lakes fish kill in 2018–19. An independent panel concluded that over one million fish may have died in the three mass fish death events.
Uncle Badger Bates, a Barkandji Elder, tells the Ngatyi creation story of the Baaka and how his people come from the Baaka itself:
I want to help people understand what it means to be a Barkandji wiimpatja and how the people, plants, animals, country and water are all connected and interdependent and we all know each other and belong as family. I tell the story of the travelling Ngatyi or rainbow serpents who map out our living landscape and give it lifeforce. They travel about looking after the Country and leaving water for all living things. They travel though waterways, shaping the rivers and creeks and filling them with water. They also travel underground through the aquifers and appear at springs and rock holes.