Croatia, officially the Republic of Croatia, is a sovereign state between Central Europe, Southeast Europe, and the Mediterranean. Its capital city is Zagreb, which one of the countrys primary subdivisions. Croatia covers 56,594 square kilometres and has diverse, mostly continental, Croatias Adriatic Sea coast contains more than a thousand islands. The countrys population is 4.28 million, most of whom are Croats, the Croats arrived in the area of present-day Croatia during the early part of the 7th century AD. They organised the state into two duchies by the 9th century, tomislav became the first king by 925, elevating Croatia to the status of a kingdom. The Kingdom of Croatia retained its sovereignty for nearly two centuries, reaching its peak during the rule of Kings Petar Krešimir IV and Dmitar Zvonimir, Croatia entered a personal union with Hungary in 1102. In 1527, faced with Ottoman conquest, the Croatian Parliament elected Ferdinand I of the House of Habsburg to the Croatian throne. In 1918, after World War I, Croatia was included in the unrecognized State of Slovenes and Serbs which seceded from Austria-Hungary, a fascist Croatian puppet state backed by Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany existed during World War II.
After the war, Croatia became a member and a federal constituent of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. On 25 June 1991 Croatia declared independence, which came wholly into effect on 8 October of the same year, the Croatian War of Independence was fought successfully during the four years following the declaration. A unitary state, Croatia is a republic governed under a parliamentary system, the International Monetary Fund classified Croatia as an emerging and developing economy, and the World Bank identified it as a high-income economy. Croatia is a member of the European Union, United Nations, the Council of Europe, NATO, the World Trade Organization, the service sector dominates Croatias economy, followed by the industrial sector and agriculture. Tourism is a significant source of revenue during the summer, with Croatia ranked the 18th most popular tourist destination in the world, the state controls a part of the economy, with substantial government expenditure. The European Union is Croatias most important trading partner, since 2000, the Croatian government constantly invests in infrastructure, especially transport routes and facilities along the Pan-European corridors.
Internal sources produce a significant portion of energy in Croatia, the rest is imported, the origin of the name is uncertain, but is thought to be a Gothic or Indo-Aryan term assigned to a Slavic tribe. The oldest preserved record of the Croatian ethnonym *xъrvatъ is of variable stem, the first attestation of the Latin term is attributed to a charter of Duke Trpimir from the year 852. The original is lost, and just a 1568 copy is preserved—leading to doubts over the authenticity of the claim, the oldest preserved stone inscription is the 9th-century Branimir Inscription, where Duke Branimir is styled as Dux Cruatorvm. The inscription is not believed to be dated accurately, but is likely to be from during the period of 879–892, the area known as Croatia today was inhabited throughout the prehistoric period
Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania and numerous smaller islands. It is the worlds sixth-largest country by total area, the neighbouring countries are Papua New Guinea and East Timor to the north, the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu to the north-east, and New Zealand to the south-east. Australias capital is Canberra, and its largest urban area is Sydney, for about 50,000 years before the first British settlement in the late 18th century, Australia was inhabited by indigenous Australians, who spoke languages classifiable into roughly 250 groups. The population grew steadily in subsequent decades, and by the 1850s most of the continent had been explored, on 1 January 1901, the six colonies federated, forming the Commonwealth of Australia. Australia has since maintained a liberal democratic political system that functions as a federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy comprising six states.
The population of 24 million is highly urbanised and heavily concentrated on the eastern seaboard, Australia has the worlds 13th-largest economy and ninth-highest per capita income. With the second-highest human development index globally, the country highly in quality of life, education, economic freedom. The name Australia is derived from the Latin Terra Australis a name used for putative lands in the southern hemisphere since ancient times, the Dutch adjectival form Australische was used in a Dutch book in Batavia in 1638, to refer to the newly discovered lands to the south. On 12 December 1817, Macquarie recommended to the Colonial Office that it be formally adopted, in 1824, the Admiralty agreed that the continent should be known officially as Australia. The first official published use of the term Australia came with the 1830 publication of The Australia Directory and these first inhabitants may have been ancestors of modern Indigenous Australians. The Torres Strait Islanders, ethnically Melanesian, were originally horticulturists, the northern coasts and waters of Australia were visited sporadically by fishermen from Maritime Southeast Asia.
The first recorded European sighting of the Australian mainland, and the first recorded European landfall on the Australian continent, are attributed to the Dutch. The first ship and crew to chart the Australian coast and meet with Aboriginal people was the Duyfken captained by Dutch navigator, Willem Janszoon. He sighted the coast of Cape York Peninsula in early 1606, the Dutch charted the whole of the western and northern coastlines and named the island continent New Holland during the 17th century, but made no attempt at settlement. William Dampier, an English explorer and privateer, landed on the north-west coast of New Holland in 1688, in 1770, James Cook sailed along and mapped the east coast, which he named New South Wales and claimed for Great Britain. The first settlement led to the foundation of Sydney, and the exploration, a British settlement was established in Van Diemens Land, now known as Tasmania, in 1803, and it became a separate colony in 1825. The United Kingdom formally claimed the part of Western Australia in 1828.
Separate colonies were carved from parts of New South Wales, South Australia in 1836, Victoria in 1851, the Northern Territory was founded in 1911 when it was excised from South Australia
The Magura Cave is located in north-western Bulgaria close to the village of Rabisha,25 km from the town of Belogradchik in Vidin Province. Guided visits are conducted by the staff of Belogradchik municipality, to which the management of the cave was transferred in 2012 by the Bulgarian Council of Ministers, in 1984 the site was induced into UNESCOs tentative list of World Heritage. The total length of the 15 million year old cave is 2.5 km, the average annual temperature of the cave is 12 °C, except for one room where the temperature is always 15 °C. The air humidity reaches 80% and the displacement -56 m, the Magura cave was formed in the limestone Rabisha Hill. The morphology of the consists of one main gallery with six various-sized halls. The very spacious site allows for music concerts to be held during Christmas, the inner temperature is constantly 11-12 °C. During the summers of 1974 and 1975 the cave was used for speleotherapy. Thirty patients slept in the cave for twelve nights, taking advantage of allergens absence, constant humidity.
A part of the cave is now used for ageing sparkling and red wines, labelled Magura, bones from different prehistoric species like cave bear, cave hyena, wolf, wild cat and otter have been discovered in the Magura Cave. Today, constant inhabitants of the cave is the collembola, as well as four types of bats, Cave paintings dating from the Epipaleolithic, late Neolithic and early Bronze Age decorate some of the caves walls. The paintings have been estimated to be made between 10.000 and 8.000 years ago, the drawings represent important events of the society that had occupied the Magura cave, religious ceremonies, hunting scenes and depictions of deities which are unique on the Balkan peninsula. The Fertility Dance and the Hunting Ceremony rank among the most noteworthy paintings, one grouping from the Bronze Age has been interpreted as a solar calendar. The cave paintings allowed storing information about regional solar calendar, religious festivals, contemporary imitations of possible fertility rites are reported — inscriptions in Latin and paintings made by treasure-hunters.
The medium used to create the art was bat guano, more than 750 images have been identified. Painted signs can be organised into four groups, zoomorphic, geometric. For the first group, there are bitriangular silhouettes with raised rounded arms, ithyphallic figures, regarding zoomorpic items, there are caprids, dogs, ostrich-like animals and schematic linear quadrupeds. Few rayed circle figures, mainly the two unica of the so-called calendar scene, likely represent a sun depiction, taking count of some associated figures, it is possible to recognize dancing and mating scenes. In the so-called Cult Hall a large dance and hunting scene is depicted, arranged in two main rows, these are the best known and most reproduced Magura Cave images
Austria, officially the Republic of Austria, is a federal republic and a landlocked country of over 8.7 million people in Central Europe. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north and Slovakia to the east and Italy to the south, the territory of Austria covers 83,879 km2. The terrain is mountainous, lying within the Alps, only 32% of the country is below 500 m. The majority of the population speaks local Bavarian dialects of German as their native language, other local official languages are Hungarian, Burgenland Croatian, and Slovene. The origins of modern-day Austria date back to the time of the Habsburg dynasty, from the time of the Reformation, many northern German princes, resenting the authority of the Emperor, used Protestantism as a flag of rebellion. Following Napoleons defeat, Prussia emerged as Austrias chief competitor for rule of a greater Germany, Austrias defeat by Prussia at the Battle of Königgrätz, during the Austro-Prussian War of 1866, cleared the way for Prussia to assert control over the rest of Germany.
In 1867, the empire was reformed into Austria-Hungary, Austria was thus the first to go to war in the July Crisis, which would ultimately escalate into World War I. The First Austrian Republic was established in 1919, in 1938 Nazi Germany annexed Austria in the Anschluss. This lasted until the end of World War II in 1945, after which Germany was occupied by the Allies, in 1955, the Austrian State Treaty re-established Austria as a sovereign state, ending the occupation. In the same year, the Austrian Parliament created the Declaration of Neutrality which declared that the Second Austrian Republic would become permanently neutral, Austria is a parliamentary representative democracy comprising nine federal states. The capital and largest city, with a population exceeding 1.7 million, is Vienna, other major urban areas of Austria include Graz, Linz and Innsbruck. Austria is one of the richest countries in the world, with a nominal per capita GDP of $43,724, the country has developed a high standard of living and in 2014 was ranked 21st in the world for its Human Development Index.
Austria has been a member of the United Nations since 1955, joined the European Union in 1995, Austria signed the Schengen Agreement in 1995, and adopted the euro currency in 1999. The German name for Austria, Österreich, meant eastern realm in Old High German, and is cognate with the word Ostarrîchi and this word is probably a translation of Medieval Latin Marchia orientalis into a local dialect. Austria was a prefecture of Bavaria created in 976, the word Austria is a Latinisation of the German name and was first recorded in the 12th century. Accordingly, Norig would essentially mean the same as Ostarrîchi and Österreich, the Celtic name was eventually Latinised to Noricum after the Romans conquered the area that encloses most of modern-day Austria, around 15 BC. Noricum became a Roman province in the mid-first century AD, heers hypothesis is not accepted by linguists. Settled in ancient times, the Central European land that is now Austria was occupied in pre-Roman times by various Celtic tribes, the Celtic kingdom of Noricum was claimed by the Roman Empire and made a province
Devetàshka cave is a huge karst cave around 7 km east of Letnitsa and 15 km northeast of Lovech, near the village of Devetaki on the east bank of the river Osam, in Bulgaria. The site has continuously occupied by Paleo humans for tens of thousands of years. Devetashka cave is located approximately 2 km from the village of Devetaki, a narrow path by the river lead from the village to the cave. It can be accessed directly via Road 301 along a 400 m long dirt road, the site is 35 m wide and 30 m high at the entrance. The cave widens after around 40 m, forming a hall with an area of 2,400 m2. Earliest traces of human presence back to the Middle Paleolithic around 70,000 years ago. The site contained one of the richest sources of Neolithic cultural artifacts, besides significant archaeological findings, Devetashka cave is provides a habitat for a wide diversity of faunal residents. During the breeding season of mammalian species in the cave from early June to the end of July, thirty-four species of mammals, four of which are included in the Red List and fifteen species of bats are to be found at the Devetashka cave.
Devetashka cave was shown in the action movie The Expendables 2, the Supreme Administrative Court of Bulgaria declared that several activities during filming violated Bulgarias environmental regulations. A contractor hired by The Expendables crew was subsequently fined for trimming the shrubbery in front of the site, after a fatal accident during the filming of a stunt, the production team again clashed with the authorities over damages to the cave. Loud noises, bright lights, crowds of people and fires in close proximity to the cave might have caused the displacement of large numbers of bats from the cave, however, by late 2012, the majority of the bats had returned to the cave. Media related to Devetashka cave at Wikimedia Commons Devetashka Cave
The Pleistocene is the geological epoch which lasted from about 2,588,000 to 11,700 years ago, spanning the worlds most recent period of repeated glaciations. The end of the Pleistocene corresponds with the end of the last glacial period, the Pleistocene is the first epoch of the Quaternary Period or sixth epoch of the Cenozoic Era. In the ICS timescale, the Pleistocene is divided into four stages or ages, all of these stages were defined in southern Europe. In addition to this subdivision, various regional subdivisions are often used. Charles Lyell introduced the term pleistocene in 1839 to describe strata in Sicily that had at least 70% of their molluscan fauna still living today and this distinguished it from the older Pliocene Epoch, which Lyell had originally thought to be the youngest fossil rock layer. The Pleistocene has been dated from 2.588 million to 11,700 years before present and it covers most of the latest period of repeated glaciation, up to and including the Younger Dryas cold spell.
The end of the Younger Dryas has been dated to about 9640 BC, the IUGS has yet to approve a type section, Global Boundary Stratotype Section and Point, for the upper Pleistocene/Holocene boundary. The proposed section is the North Greenland Ice Core Project ice core 75°06 N 42°18 W, the lower boundary of the Pleistocene Series is formally defined magnetostratigraphically as the base of the Matuyama chronozone, isotopic stage 103. Above this point there are notable extinctions of the calcareous nanofossils, Discoaster pentaradiatus, the Pleistocene covers the recent period of repeated glaciations. The name Plio-Pleistocene has, in the past, been used to mean the last ice age. The revised definition of the Quaternary, by pushing back the date of the Pleistocene to 2.58 Ma. Pleistocene climate was marked by repeated glacial cycles in which continental glaciers pushed to the 40th parallel in some places and it is estimated that, at maximum glacial extent, 30% of the Earths surface was covered by ice.
In addition, a zone of permafrost stretched southward from the edge of the sheet, a few hundred kilometres in North America. The mean annual temperature at the edge of the ice was −6 °C, during interglacial times, such as at present, drowned coastlines were common, mitigated by isostatic or other emergent motion of some regions. The effects of glaciation were global, antarctica was ice-bound throughout the Pleistocene as well as the preceding Pliocene. The Andes were covered in the south by the Patagonian ice cap, there were glaciers in New Zealand and Tasmania. The current decaying glaciers of Mount Kenya, Mount Kilimanjaro, glaciers existed in the mountains of Ethiopia and to the west in the Atlas mountains. In the northern hemisphere, many glaciers fused into one, the Cordilleran ice sheet covered the North American northwest, the east was covered by the Laurentide
The Snowy River is a major river in south-eastern Australia. In New South Wales, the runs through the Snowy Monaro Regional Council. The tributaries of the Snowy River below Jindabyne include, the Mowamba, Wullwye Creek, Delegate, Pinch, Suggan Buggan, Buchan and Brodribb rivers. In 1986, Jennings and Mabbutt mapped four geomorphic classes in the Snowy River Basin, Australian Alps, the Monaro Tablelands, the East Victorian Uplands, each class is physically distinct from one another. The general distribution of rainfall over the Snowy River catchment is controlled by orographic effects, there is a strong rainfall gradient across the catchment. The highest average rainfall is recorded in the higher alpine reaches of the Snowy Catchment. The lowest average rainfall is recorded in the rain shadow affected north eastern catchment on the Monaro Plains around Dalgety, the lower eastern sub-catchments are more strongly influenced by coastal rainfall patterns. For example, peak rainfall in the Delegate catchment is strongly influenced by east coast lows and these local variations in rainfall result in distinctly different hydrology in the rivers across the Snowy River catchment.
The large flows in September and October are derived from snowmelt, prolonged base flows over the summer months are another feature of these types of rivers, driven by snowmelt derived groundwater. In the lower reaches of the Snowy River catchment, the tributaries have a distinctly different flow regime to the snow melt rivers of the Alps. These tributaries are typically dominated by the rainfall and often have peak monthly flows a few months earlier than the snow melt tributaries. The peak monthly flows for these lower Snowy River tributaries occur in June through July, the flow regime in the lower tributaries is far more variable and unpredictable. The Snowy River below Jindabyne Dam contains four major waterfalls, Stone Bridge Falls, Corrowong Falls, Snowy Falls, many of these waterfalls act as barriers for the large scale movement of aquatic species in the main stem of the Snowy River. The flows required to drown out the largest barrier, Snowy Falls, is larger than the environmental water releases to the river via Jindabyne Dam.
Many of these flora and fauna are coldwater specialists, the instream habitat of the Snowy River below Jindabyne can be best described as highly disturbed. Many of the features of a large upland river are not evident today. The substrate was previously typified by a clean cobble stone substrate, the river channel has contracted and the substrate has a heavy cover of sediment, overlaying much of the cobble stone riverbed. The bushfires of 2002-03, added to this problem as large amounts of sediment and this input of sediment lead to the substrate becoming finer
Many of these species became extinct during the Pleistocene. There are similarities between prehistoric Australian megafauna and some creatures from the Aboriginal dreamtime. The cause of the extinction is an active and factionalised field of research where politics and it is hypothesised that with the arrival of early Australian Aboriginals and the use of fire to manage their environment may have contributed to the extinction of the megafauna. Increased aridity during peak glaciation may have contributed and it has been suggested that the vegetational changes that occurred on the mainland were a consequence, rather than a cause, of the elimination of the megafauna. One of the most important advocates of human role, Tim Flannery, females grow up to 1.1 m tall and weigh up to 35 kg. Tails on both males and females can be up to 1 m long, although a male typically weighs around 66 kg and stand almost 2 m tall, the scientific name Macropus giganteus is misleading, as the red kangaroo living in the semi-arid inland is larger.
Can weigh as much as 47 kg and grow over 1 m long, common wombats can reach 40 kg. They thrive in Eastern Australia and Tasmania, preferring temperate forests, the emu The Northern cassowary Goanna, being predatory lizards, are often quite large or bulky, with sharp teeth and claws. The largest goanna is the perentie, which can grow over 2 m in length, not all goannas are gargantuan though, pygmy goannas may be smaller than a mans arm. A healthy adult male crocodile is typically 4. 8–7 m long and weighs around 770 kg ). The female is smaller, with typical body lengths of 2. 5–3 m. An 8.5 m saltwater crocodile was shot on the Norman River of Queensland in 1957. However, due to the lack of evidence and the length of time since the crocodile was caught. Freshwater crocodile The freshwater crocodile is a small crocodilian. Males can grow to 2. 3–3 m long, while females reach a size of 2.1 m. Males commonly weigh around 40 kg, with large specimens up to 53 kg or more. In areas such as Lake Argyle and Katherine Gorge there exist a handful of confirmed 4 m individuals, the following is an incomplete list of extinct Australian megafauna in the format, Latin name, and a brief description.
Monotremes are arranged by size with the largest at the top, zaglossus hacketti was a sheep-sized echidna uncovered in Mammoth Cave in Western Australia, and is the largest monotreme so far uncovered. Obdurodon dicksoni was a platypus up to 60 cm in total length, megalibgwilia ramsayi was a large, long-beaked echidna with powerful forelimbs for digging
Bulgaria, officially the Republic of Bulgaria, is a country in southeastern Europe. It is bordered by Romania to the north and Macedonia to the west and Turkey to the south, with a territory of 110,994 square kilometres, Bulgaria is Europes 16th-largest country. Organised prehistoric cultures began developing on current Bulgarian lands during the Neolithic period and its ancient history saw the presence of the Thracians, Persians, Romans, Goths and Huns. With the downfall of the Second Bulgarian Empire in 1396, its territories came under Ottoman rule for five centuries. The Russo-Turkish War of 1877–78 led to the formation of the Third Bulgarian State, the following years saw several conflicts with its neighbours, which prompted Bulgaria to align with Germany in both world wars. In 1946 it became a one-party socialist state as part of the Soviet-led Eastern Bloc, in December 1989 the ruling Communist Party allowed multi-party elections, which subsequently led to Bulgarias transition into a democracy and a market-based economy.
Bulgarias population of 7.2 million people is predominantly urbanised, most commercial and cultural activities are centred on the capital and largest city, Sofia. The strongest sectors of the economy are industry, power engineering. The countrys current political structure dates to the adoption of a constitution in 1991. Bulgaria is a parliamentary republic with a high degree of political, administrative. Human activity in the lands of modern Bulgaria can be traced back to the Paleolithic, animal bones incised with man-made markings from Kozarnika cave are assumed to be the earliest examples of symbolic behaviour in humans. Organised prehistoric societies in Bulgarian lands include the Neolithic Hamangia culture, Vinča culture, the latter is credited with inventing gold working and exploitation. Some of these first gold smelters produced the coins and jewellery of the Varna Necropolis treasure and this site offers insights for understanding the social hierarchy of the earliest European societies.
Thracians, one of the three primary groups of modern Bulgarians, began appearing in the region during the Iron Age. In the late 6th century BC, the Persians conquered most of present-day Bulgaria, and kept it until 479 BC. After the division of the Roman Empire in the 5th century the area fell under Byzantine control, by this time, Christianity had already spread in the region. A small Gothic community in Nicopolis ad Istrum produced the first Germanic language book in the 4th century, the first Christian monastery in Europe was established around the same time by Saint Athanasius in central Bulgaria. From the 6th century the easternmost South Slavs gradually settled in the region, in 680 Bulgar tribes under the leadership of Asparukh moved south across the Danube and settled in the area between the lower Danube and the Balkan, establishing their capital at Pliska
A cave is a hollow place in the ground, specifically a natural underground space large enough for a human to enter. Caves form naturally by the weathering of rock and often extend deep underground, the word cave can refer to much smaller openings such as sea caves, rock shelters, and grottos. A cavern is a type of cave, naturally formed in soluble rock with the ability to grow speleothems. Speleology is the science of exploration and study of all aspects of caves, visiting or exploring caves for recreation may be called caving, potholing, or spelunking. The formation and development of caves is known as speleogenesis, which can occur over the course of millions of years, caves are formed by various geologic processes and can be variable sizes. These may involve a combination of processes, erosion from water, tectonic forces, pressure. Isotopic dating techniques can be applied to cave sediments, in order to determine the timescale when geologic events may have occurred to help form and it is estimated that the maximum depth of a cave cannot be more than 3,000 metres due to the pressure of overlying rocks.
For karst caves the maximum depth is determined on the basis of the limit of karst forming processes. Most caves are formed in limestone by dissolution, solutional caves or karst caves are the most frequently occurring caves and such caves form in rock that is soluble. Most occur in limestone, but they can form in other rocks including chalk, marble, salt. Rock is dissolved by acid in groundwater that seeps through bedding planes, joints. Over geological epochs cracks expand to become caves and cave systems, the largest and most abundant solutional caves are located in limestone. Limestone dissolves under the action of rainwater and groundwater charged with H2CO3, the dissolution process produces a distinctive landform known as karst, characterized by sinkholes and underground drainage. Limestone caves are often adorned with calcium carbonate formations produced through slow precipitation and these include flowstones, stalagmites, soda straws and columns. These secondary mineral deposits in caves are called speleothems, the portions of a solutional cave that are below the water table or the local level of the groundwater will be flooded.
Lechuguilla Cave in New Mexico and nearby Carlsbad Cavern are now believed to be examples of type of solutional cave. They were formed by H2S gas rising from below, where reservoirs of oil give off sulfurous fumes and this gas mixes with ground water and forms H2SO4. The acid dissolves the limestone from below, rather than from above, caves formed at the same time as the surrounding rock are called primary caves