Australia the Commonwealth of Australia, is a sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania and numerous smaller islands. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area; the neighbouring countries are Papua New Guinea and East Timor to the north. The population of 25 million is urbanised and concentrated on the eastern seaboard. Australia's capital is Canberra, its largest city is Sydney; the country's other major metropolitan areas are Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. Australia was inhabited by indigenous Australians for about 60,000 years before the first British settlement in the late 18th century, it is documented. After the European exploration of the continent by Dutch explorers in 1606, who named it New Holland, Australia's eastern half was claimed by Great Britain in 1770 and settled through penal transportation to the colony of New South Wales from 26 January 1788, a date which became Australia's national day; the population grew in subsequent decades, by the 1850s most of the continent had been explored and an additional five self-governing crown colonies established.
On 1 January 1901, the six colonies federated. Australia has since maintained a stable liberal democratic political system that functions as a federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy, comprising six states and ten territories. Being the oldest and driest inhabited continent, with the least fertile soils, Australia has a landmass of 7,617,930 square kilometres. A megadiverse country, its size gives it a wide variety of landscapes, with deserts in the centre, tropical rainforests in the north-east and mountain ranges in the south-east. A gold rush began in Australia in the early 1850s, its population density, 2.8 inhabitants per square kilometre, remains among the lowest in the world. Australia generates its income from various sources including mining-related exports, telecommunications and manufacturing. Indigenous Australian rock art is the oldest and richest in the world, dating as far back as 60,000 years and spread across hundreds of thousands of sites. Australia is a developed country, with the world's 14th-largest economy.
It has a high-income economy, with the world's tenth-highest per capita income. It is a regional power, has the world's 13th-highest military expenditure. Australia has the world's ninth-largest immigrant population, with immigrants accounting for 26% of the population. Having the third-highest human development index and the eighth-highest ranked democracy globally, the country ranks in quality of life, education, economic freedom, civil liberties and political rights, with all its major cities faring well in global comparative livability surveys. Australia is a member of the United Nations, G20, Commonwealth of Nations, ANZUS, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, World Trade Organization, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, Pacific Islands Forum and the ASEAN Plus Six mechanism; the name Australia is derived from the Latin Terra Australis, a name used for a hypothetical continent in the Southern Hemisphere since ancient times. When Europeans first began visiting and mapping Australia in the 17th century, the name Terra Australis was applied to the new territories.
Until the early 19th century, Australia was best known as "New Holland", a name first applied by the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1644 and subsequently anglicised. Terra Australis still saw occasional usage, such as in scientific texts; the name Australia was popularised by the explorer Matthew Flinders, who said it was "more agreeable to the ear, an assimilation to the names of the other great portions of the earth". The first time that Australia appears to have been used was in April 1817, when Governor Lachlan Macquarie acknowledged the receipt of Flinders' charts of Australia from Lord Bathurst. In December 1817, Macquarie recommended to the Colonial Office. In 1824, the Admiralty agreed that the continent should be known by that name; the first official published use of the new name came with the publication in 1830 of The Australia Directory by the Hydrographic Office. Colloquial names for Australia include "Oz" and "the Land Down Under". Other epithets include "the Great Southern Land", "the Lucky Country", "the Sunburnt Country", "the Wide Brown Land".
The latter two both derive from Dorothea Mackellar's 1908 poem "My Country". Human habitation of the Australian continent is estimated to have begun around 65,000 to 70,000 years ago, with the migration of people by land bridges and short sea-crossings from what is now Southeast Asia; these first inhabitants were the ancestors of modern Indigenous Australians. Aboriginal Australian culture is one of the oldest continual civilisations on earth. At the time of first European contact, most Indigenous Australians were hunter-gatherers with complex economies and societies. Recent archaeological finds suggest. Indigenous Australians have an oral culture with spiritual values based on reverence for the land and a belief in the Dreamtime; the Torres Strait Islanders, ethnically Melanesian, obtained their livelihood from seasonal horticulture and the resources of their reefs and seas. The northern coasts and waters of Australia were visited s
North Queensland or the Northern Region is the northern part of the Australian state of Queensland that lies just south of Far North Queensland. Queensland is a massive state, larger than many countries, the tropical northern part of it has been remote and undeveloped, resulting in a distinctive regional character and identity. Townsville is the largest urban centre in North Queensland, leading it to be regarded as an unofficial capital; the region has a population of 231,628 and covers 80,041.5 km2. There is no official boundary. Unofficially it is considered to have a southern border beginning south of the Mackay Region southern boundary, but it has been as far south as Rockhampton. To the north is the Far North Queensland region, centred on Cairns and out west is the Gulf Country. A coastal region centred on its largest settlement is the city of Townsville; the city is the location of a major seaport handling exports from mines in Mount Isa and cattle exports from coastal and inland areas. The region contains a bulk sugar exporting terminal at Lucinda in the region's north.
Mackay and the Burdekin region are Australia's sugar capital and produces the most sugar in Australia and is shipped at Mackay Harbour. Mackay is one of Australia's biggest coal exporters as it is close to Queensland's major mines. Dalrymple Bay, south of Mackay is another port where sugar is exported, it contains the inland city of Charters Towers and the coastal towns of Ayr and Ingham. The Burdekin is centred on the two towns of Ayr and Home Hill and while producing the largest amount of sugar produces seasonal fruit such as Lychees and Mangos in Summer/wet season. Other communities in North Queensland include Home Hill, Bowen and Proserpine. Abbot Point, north of Bowen, is coal exporting port undergoing significant expansion; the region has a number of significant tourist attractions including the Great Barrier Reef and reef islands, rainforests in the Wet Tropics of Queensland, Magnetic Island, the Whitsunday Islands. The region has 36 national parks. Captain James Cook passed by the region in 1770, naming several places including Magnetic Island and Cape Cleveland.
Alan Cunningham was the first European to explore parts of the region. John Mackay explored the Pioneer Valley near Mackay in 1860; the first settlement in the region was established at Port Denison in 1861, at what is now known as Bowen. In 1865, the first surveys of what was to become Townsville were conducted. In 1871, gold was discovered at Charters Towers; this led to much development for the town and for Townsville which served as a major port and service centre as both the pastoral and sugar industry spread along the coast. Work on the Great Northern Railway from Townsville to Mount Isa began in 1879 with a small section opening the following year. In July 1942, Japanese naval flying boats conducted air raids on Townsville; the Perc Tucker Regional Gallery was established at Townsville in 1981 and the TYTO Regional Art Gallery at Ingham opened in 2011. The region is serviced by Townsville Airport, ranked as the 11th busiest airport in Australia; the airport was granted international status in 1980.
Along the coast, the Bruce Highway passes from the south through to the north of the region. The Flinders Highway links Townsville with Charters Towers and the Peak Downs Highway extends west from Mackay. Throughout the years, there have been many calls for the formation of a new state. Many proposals have been drawn up, regarding the borders and the debate over which town will become the capital. List of schools in North Queensland
Castle Tower National Park
Castle Tower is a national park in the Gladstone Region, Australia. 407 km northwest of Brisbane. The vegetation in the park is predominantly Open eucalypt woodland. There are some stands of hoop pine. Mount Castle Tower can be seen from Lake Awoonga; the park has limited access with permission required from Gladstone Area Water Board to cross their property. There are no facilities for visitors. Boyne Valley, Queensland Protected areas of Queensland
Airlie Beach, Queensland
Airlie Beach is a coastal locality in the Whitsunday Region of Queensland, Australia. In the 2016 census, Airlie Beach had a population of 1,208 people. Airlie Beach is one of many departure points for the Great Barrier Reef. Near latitude 20 degrees south, Airlie Beach and the nearby Whitsunday Islands enjoy a tropical climate and lifestyle; each year the residents of Airlie Beach celebrate The Blessing of the Fleet on Whit Sunday or Pentecost Sunday. The name unbounded locality of Airlie Beach. Airlie was named following a request by the Lands Department in December 1935 for the Proserpine Shire Council to provide a name for a new sub-division on the coast, it is certain that the town was named for the parish of Airlie, in Scotland, as the name was suggested by the chairman of the former Proserpine Shire Council, Robert Shepherd, born in nearby Montrose, Scotland. The official name was Airlie from 1936 until 1987. Airlie Beach Post Office opened on 2 November 1959. In December 1956, 18 allotments were offered for auction as Perpetual Town Leases by the Department of Public Lands office.
The map advertising the auction states the allotments were situated 15 miles north-east of Proserpine. At the 2016 census, the suburb of Airlie Beach itself had a population of 1,208 excluding Cannonvale. 50.9% of people were born in Australia. The next most common country of birth was England at 9.2%. 71.2% of people only spoke English at home. The most common response for religion was No Religion at 34.7% of the population. Busking was made legal in June 2010 through an adopted draft policy created by Whitsunday Regional Council. "Airlie Beach". Queensland Places. Centre for the Government of Queensland, University of Queensland. Whitsunday Shire Council
Mount Walsh National Park
Mount Walsh is a national park in Queensland, Australia, 230 km northwest of Brisbane. A prominent landmark in the Biggenden region is the granite bluff area of Mount Walsh which rises to 703 m above sea leven in the northern part of park; the summit has three peaks. Exposed granite outcrops, rugged ridges and steep forested slopes support a range of vegetation; the "Bluff" area of Mount Walsh is located at the park’s northern end and is a prominent landmark of the Biggenden area. The park features sheltered gullies, rugged ridge lines with mountain areas with spectacular exposed granite outcrops and cliffs support a diversity of vegetation; such diversity gives a home to many endangered animal species such as the powerful owl and grey goshawk. Visitors may see peregrine falcons, wallabies, eastern grey kangaroos and lace monitors. A complex landscape has led to diverse vegetation communities which includes heath, woodland, open forest and dry forest. There are patches of hoop pines in some gullies.
The geological history of the mountain began in the late Triassic period about 215 million years ago. Violent explosions emanated from a volcanic structure referred to as the Mungore Centre. Two large bodies of magma rose close to the surface where Mount Malarga and Mount Walsh are presently situated. Erosion has left the cliffs, gorges rocky pavements and tors seen today. Picnic and barbecue facilities are available. Bush camping is allowed in the park. No facilities are provided so visitors must be self-sufficient. A 300 metre trail from the picnic area leads visitors through open eucalypt forest to a rocky creek gully fringed in rain forest on to lookouts over surrounding countryside. Experienced walkers can take the strenuous two and a half hour hike to Mount Walsh's bare granite summit. You will be rewarded with stunning views. Protected areas of Queensland Rocks and Landscape Notes: Mount Walsh, Biggenden - Geological Society of Australia: Queensland Division
Taunton National Park
Taunton National Park is situated near the town of Dingo 135 km inland from Rockhampton in eastern Central Queensland, Australia. The park encompasses an area of 11,626 ha within the Northern Brigalow Belt bioregion of Queensland. Taunton National Park is designated as a scientific nature reserve due to its importance in ensuring the ongoing survival and protection of the endangered bridled nail-tail wallaby; the wallabies protection has facilitated natural regeneration processes within reserve boundaries, protected ecosystem communities from further agricultural disturbances in the surrounding landscape, provided habitats for native fauna and helped conserve a wide range of biodiversity. Cracking clay soils and brigalow vegetation species are dominant in the northern region of the park, while texture-contrast soils in combination with Eucalypt communities dominate the western region; the parks topography is reasonably with a gradual slope from the north and western ends of the park towards the eastern and southern margins.
The regions climate is described as semi-arid. The distribution of rainfall over such a condensed period leaves the area prone to droughts; the most recent drought of significance occurred between 1991 and 1995 with detrimental impacts on the surviving bridled nailtail wallaby population. As is typical of the tropical savannah in the Northern Brigalow Belt, a combination of open, grassy Eucalypt woodlands, transitional zones and regrowing Acacia shrub-lands and forests comprise Taunton National Parks main vegetation zones; the most common vegetation associations within the park and surrounding areas, tend to be dominated by either brigalow or poplar box species, which occur along with other Acacia and Ecualyptus spp. Water-bodies present within the park boundaries consist of a small number of creeks; the region in which Taunton National Park is located, was subject to long-term, wide-scale agricultural development and associated disturbances. During the 1950s and 1960s extensive clearance of brigalow scrub began to take place in order to establish pastoral grasses for grazing domestic sheep and cattle.
Buffel grass was sowed for fodder in the cleared areas, became irreversibly established. A governmental initiative called the'Brigalow Development Scheme' provided great incentive for increasing agricultural development in the Brigalow region and accelerated the rate and scale of vegetation clearance for conversion to buffel grass; the success of this scheme resulted in agricultural system adjustments so that more intensive land use practices became common, with smaller properties and higher stock numbers. The cumulative effects of this land use change resulted in a considerable reduction in remnant vegetation patch size and occurrence; this in turn reduced the availability of habitat and shelter for native fauna, altered the natural vegetation composition. In 1973 a bridled nail-tail wallaby was sighted on a cattle property named'Taunton' and reported by a fencing contractor. There had been reports of a significant decline in the wallabies population numbers during the early 1900s with no recorded sightings since the 1930s, subsequently the species had been presumed extinct.
Following this sighting, Taunton was purchased in 1979 and established as a scientific reserve to ensure the protection and survival of the endangered wallaby. In 1984, another cattle property'Red Hill', situated adjacent to Taunton, was added to the reserve and the whole area became named'Taunton National Park'; the park occurs in the Northern Brigalow'Tropical Savannah' ecoregion, so named for the predominant flora species of the region. Vegetation clearance throughout this district and in fact the whole Brigalow Belt, has resulted in an extensive loss of biodiversity and overall ecosystem degradation. Despite considerable regional agricultural and pastoral development, a large proportion of the park's vegetation remained intact or was exposed to minimal disturbance prior to the reserve being established; the park has high regional significance today as only 17% of vegetation within the park had been removed by 1975, thereby conserving once prevalent, regionally representative ecosystems and vegetation communities, which are now restricted to bush fragments and reserves.
The region that the park is located in has been demonstrated to have one of the highest rate of annual clearance, when compared with other subregions within Queensland. This high clearance rate has contributed to a number of Brigalow-typical ecosystems becoming otherwise at risk or endangered, which highlights the importance of the parks biodiversity, as 12 of the regions ecosystems are represented within the reserve. Endangered open forest or woodland ecosystems in the park include. Brigalow shrubland/forest assemblages of A. harpophylla with yellow-wood and false sandalwood, are endangered, having undergone wide-scale clearing throughout the 1900s. Ecosystem communities represented within the park which are considered to be'of concern' include.