Thursday, 6 March 2008

Australian Facts

  • Australia is an independent Western democracy with a population of more than 21 million.
  • Australia is the only nation to govern an entire continent and its outlying islands.
  • It is one of the world’s most urbanised countries, with about 70 per cent of the population living in the 10 largest cities.
  • Most of the population is concentrated along the eastern seaboard and the south-eastern corner of the continent.
  • In land area, Australia is the sixth largest nation after Russia, Canada, China, the United States of America and Brazil.
  • The average world population density is 117 people per square mile, that of the United States 76 and that of Macao is 69,000. Australia's is only 6.
  • The mainland is the largest island and the smallest, flattest continent on Earth.
  • Apart from Antarctica, Australia is the driest continent. Its interior has one of the lowest rainfalls in the world and about three-quarters of the land is arid or semi-arid. Its fertile areas are well-watered, however, and these are used very effectively to help feed the world.
  • The first humans travelled across the sea from Indonesia about 70,000 years ago. These people are called 'Robust' by archaeologists because of their heavy-boned physique.
  • 50, 000 years ago, the more slender 'Gracile' people; the ancestors of Australian Aborigines, arrived in Australia. At the time of their settlement/invasion, the Gracile were the most technologically advanced people in the world.
  • Australia was founded by Convicts. Its homicide rate is 1.8 per 100,000 population. The United States was founded by religious zealots. It's homicide rate is 6.3 per 100,000. Almost 400% greater than Australia.
  • Australia's culturally diverse society includes its Indigenous peoples and settlers from countries all around the world. Immigration is an important feature of Australian society.
  • Since 1945, over six million people from 200 countries have come to Australia as new settlers. People born overseas make up almost one quarter of the total population.
  • The Australian federation consists of six States and two Territories. The largest State, Western Australia, is about the same size as Western Europe.
  • The Australian Lyre Bird is the world's best imitator; able to mimic the calls of 15 different species of birds in their locality and string the calls into a melody. Also been known to mimic the sound of mobile phones.
  • A baby kangaroo at the time of its birth measures 2 centimetres.
  • Kangaroos need very little water to survive and are capable of going for months without drinking at all. When they do need water, they dig 'wells' for themselves; frequently going as deep as three or four feet. These 'kangaroo pits' are a common source of water for other animals living in the kangaroo's environment.
  • A kangaroo being chased by a dog may jump into a dam. If the dog gives chase, the kangaroo may turn towards the dog, then use its paws to push the dogs head underwater in order to drown it.
  • Emus and kangaroos cannot walk backwards, and are on the Australian coat of arms for that reason.
  • The box jellyfish is considered the world's most venomous marine creature. The box jellyfish has killed more people in Australia than stonefish, sharks and crocodiles combined.
  • The Sydney Funnelweb spider is considered the world's most deadly spider. It is the only spider that has killed people in less than 2 hours. Its fangs are powerful enough to bite through gloves and fingernails. The only animals without immunity to the funnelweb's venom are humans and monkeys.
  • Lung fish - Queensland is home to lung fish, a living fossil from the Triassic period 350 million years ago.
  • Convicts of African descent - Convicts comprised many different racial groups and many of these minority racial groups were very prominent in colonial society. Australia's first bushranger was a Convict of African descent. tails.
  • During the Gold rush of the 1850's, Australia received massive waves of migration from China, America, Canada, Germany, Italy, France, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England.
  • People: 92% Caucasian descent, 7% Asian descent, 1% Aboriginal descent.
  • Four out of 10 Australians are migrants or the first-generation children of migrants.
  • 'Waltzing Matilda' the title of Australia's most famous song, is German for 'carrying a backpack'.
  • 10 percent of Australians satisfy the definition of an 'ocker' . This 10 percent of the population consume 80 percent of the beer drunk in Australia.

source: Convict Creations

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