A marsh is a wetland, dominated by herbaceous rather than woody plant species. Marshes can be found at the edges of lakes and streams, where they form a transition between the aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, they are dominated by grasses, rushes or reeds. If woody plants are present they tend to be low-growing shrubs; this form of vegetation is what differentiates marshes from other types of wetland such as swamps, which are dominated by trees, mires, which are wetlands that have accumulated deposits of acidic peat. Marshes provide a habitat for many species of plants and insects that have adapted to living in flooded conditions; the plants must be able to survive in wet mud with low oxygen levels. Many of these plants therefore have aerenchyma, channels within the stem that allow air to move from the leaves into the rooting zone. Marsh plants tend to have rhizomes for underground storage and reproduction. Familiar examples include cattails, sedges and sawgrass. Aquatic animals, from fish to salamanders, are able to live with a low amount of oxygen in the water.
Some can obtain oxygen from the air instead, while others can live indefinitely in conditions of low oxygen. Marshes provide habitats for many kinds of invertebrates, amphibians and aquatic mammals. Marshes have high levels of biological production, some of the highest in the world, therefore are important in supporting fisheries. Marshes improve water quality by acting as a sink to filter pollutants and sediment from the water that flows through them. Marshes are able to absorb water during periods of heavy rainfall and release it into waterways and therefore reduce the magnitude of flooding; the pH in marshes tends to be neutral to alkaline, as opposed to bogs, where peat accumulates under more acid conditions. Marshes differ depending on their location and salinity. Both of these factors influence the range and scope of animal and plant life that can survive and reproduce in these environments; the three main types of marsh are salt marshes, freshwater tidal marshes, freshwater marshes. These three can be found worldwide and each contains a different set of organisms.
Saltwater marshes are found around the world in mid to high latitudes, wherever there are sections of protected coastline. They are located close enough to the shoreline that the motion of the tides affects them, sporadically, they are covered with water, they flourish where the rate of sediment buildup is greater than the rate at which the land level is sinking. Salt marshes are dominated by specially adapted rooted vegetation salt-tolerant grasses. Salt marshes are most found in lagoons, on the sheltered side of shingle or sandspit; the currents there carry the fine particles around to the quiet side of the spit and sediment begins to build up. These locations allow the marshes to absorb the excess nutrients from the water running through them before they reach the oceans and estuaries; these marshes are declining. Coastal development and urban sprawl has caused significant loss of these essential habitats. Although considered a freshwater marsh, this form of marsh is affected by the ocean tides.
However, without the stresses of salinity at work in its saltwater counterpart, the diversity of the plants and animals that live in and use freshwater tidal marshes is much higher than in salt marshes. The most serious threats to this form of marsh are the increasing size and pollution of the cities surrounding them. Ranging in both size and geographic location, freshwater marshes make up the most common form of wetland in North America, they are the most diverse of the three types of marsh. Some examples of freshwater marsh types in North America are: Wet meadows occur in areas such as shallow lake basins, low-lying depressions, the land between shallow marshes and upland areas, they occur on the edges of large lakes and rivers. Wet meadows have high plant diversity and high densities of buried seeds, they are flooded but are dry in the summer. Vernal pools are a type of marsh found only seasonally in shallow depressions in the land, they can be covered in shallow water, but in the summer and fall, they can be dry.
In western North America, vernal pools tend to form in open grasslands, whereas in the east they occur in forested landscapes. Further south, vernal pools form in pine flatwoods. Many amphibian species depend upon vernal pools for spring breeding. An example is the endangered gopher frog. Similar temporary ponds occur in other world ecosystems. However, the term vernal pool can be applied to all such temporary pool ecosystems. Playa lakes are a form of shallow freshwater marsh that occurs in the southern high plains of the United States. Like vernal pools, they are only present at certain times of the year and have a circular shape; as the playa dries during the summer, conspicuous plant zonation develops along the shoreline. Prairie potholes are found in the northern parts of North America as the Prairie Pothole Region; these landscapes were once covered by glaciers, as a result shallow depressions were formed in great numbers. These depressions fill with water in the spring, they provide important breeding habitats for many species of waterfowl.
Some pools only occur seasonally. Many kinds of marsh occur along the fringes of large rivers; the different types are produced by factors such as water level, ice scour, waves. Large tracts of marshland have been embanked and ar
The Hunter Region commonly known as the Hunter Valley, is a region of New South Wales, extending from 120 km to 310 km north of Sydney. It contains its tributaries with highland areas to the north and south. Situated at the northern end of the Sydney Basin bioregion, the Hunter Valley is one of the largest river valleys on the NSW coast, is most known for its wineries and coal industry. Most of the population of the Hunter Region lives within 25 km of the coast, with 55% of the entire population living in the cities of Newcastle and Lake Macquarie. There are numerous other towns and villages scattered across the region in the eleven local government areas that make up the region. At the 2011 census the combined population of the region was 620,530. Under Australia's wine appellation system, the Hunter Valley wine zone Australian Geographical Indication covers the entire catchment of the Hunter River and its tributaries. Within that, the Hunter region is as large, includes most of the wine-producing areas, excluding the metropolitan area of Newcastle and nearby coastal areas, some national parks, any land, in the Mudgee Shire.
The Hunter wine region is one of Australia's best known wine regions, playing a pivotal role in the history of Australian wine as one of the first wine regions planted in the early 19th century. The success of the Hunter Valley wine industry has been dominated by its proximity to Sydney with its settlement and plantings in the 19th century fuelled by the trade network that linked the valley to the city; the steady demand of consumers from Sydney continues to drive much of the Hunter Valley wine industry, including a factor in the economy by the tourism industry. While the Hunter Valley has been supplanted by the massive Riverina wine region as the largest producer of New South Wales wine, it still accounts for around 3% of Australia's total wine production and is one of the country's most recognisable regions. For over 30,000 years the Wonnarua tribe of Aboriginal Australians inhabited the land, now known as the Hunter Valley wine region. Along with the Worimi to the north and the Awabakal to the south, the Wonnarua developed a trading route connecting the Coquun Valley to the harbour now known as Sydney harbour.
The wine-making history of Hunter Valley begins with the European settlement of the Sydney and the New South Wales region of Australia in the late 18th century as a penal colony of the British Empire. The Hunter River itself was discovered, by accident, in 1797 by British Lieutenant John Shortland as he searched for escaped convicts; the region soon became a valuable source for timber and coal that fuelled the steamship trade coming out of Sydney. Land prospector John Howe cut a path through the Australian wilderness from Sydney up to the overland area in what is now known as the Hunter Valley proper in 1820. Today, the modern Putty Road between the cities of Windsor and Singleton follows Howe's exact path and is a major thoroughfare for wine tourists coming into the Hunter Valley from Sydney; as previous plantings in the coastal areas around Sydney succumbed to the humidity and wetness, plantings to the west were limited by spring frost damage, northern reaches leading to the Hunter became by default, the wine region of the new colony.
The expansive growth of the Hunter Valley in the mid to late 19th century came directly from its monopoly position of the lucrative Sydney market. The provincial government of New South Wales had enacted regulations that placed prohibitive duties on wines from other areas such as Victoria and South Australia. Following World War I, many returning Australian veterans were given land grants in the Hunter Valley; this temporarily produced an up-tick in plantings but the global Great Depression as well as a series of devastating hail storms between 1929–30 caused many growers to abandon their vineyards. The Hunter Region is considered a transitional area between the Paleozoic rock foundation of the New England Fold Belt located to the south and the Early Permian and Middle Triassic period rock formations of the Sydney Basin to the south. Between these two geological areas is the Hunter-Mooki Thrust fault. At one time this fault was geologically active and gave rise to the Brokenback range that feature prominently in the Hunter region.
Strips of basalt found throughout the region bear witness to the volcanic activity that has occurred in the history of this fault. The Permian rocks in the central and southeastern expanse of the Lower Hunter Valley were formed when the area was underneath a shallow marine estuary; the remnants of this period has left an extensive network of coal seams that fuelled the early population boom of the Hunter Valley in the 19th century as well a high degree of salinity in the water table of much of the area. The further north and west, towards the Brokenback Range and the Upper Hunter, the more Triassic sandstone that can be found leading to the carboniferous rocks that form the northern boundary of the Hunter with the New England Fold Belt and the foothills of the Barrington Tops. Overall, the Hunter Valley has more soils that are unsuitable for viticulture than they have areas that are ideal for growing grapes; the soils of the Lower Hunter vary from sandy alluvial flats, to deep friable loam and friable red duplex soils.
In the Upper Hunter, the rivers and creeks of the region contribute to the areas black, silty loam soils that are overlaid on top of alkaline clay loam. Among the hills of the Brokenback range are strips of volcanic basalt that are prized b
Fern Bay, New South Wales
Fern Bay is the southern-most suburb of the Port Stephens local government area in the Hunter Region of New South Wales, Australia. It is located just north of Stockton, the only suburb of Newcastle that lies north of the Hunter River and to the east of the north arm of the Hunter River at the entrance to Fullerton Cove, a large body of water. To the east is the Tasman Sea. Despite the suburb only being 6 kilometres in a direct line from Newcastle, the need to cross the Hunter River results in Fern Bay being 16 km by road from the centre of the city; the area is undergoing a residential expansion program with a large development being built between Nelson Bay Road and Stockton Beach on land used as a military weapons range. 83.3% of people were born in Australia. The next most common country of birth was England at 3.8%. 91.7% of people spoke only English at home. The most common responses for religion were Anglican 26.2%, No Religion 26.0% and Catholic 21.3%. Fern Bay at Australian Explorer Media related to Fern Bay, New South Wales at Wikimedia Commons
Gloucester County, New South Wales
Gloucester County was one of the original Nineteen Counties in New South Wales, is now one of the 141 cadastral divisions of New South Wales. It includes the area around Port Stephens, it is bounded on the north and west by the Manning River, on the south-west by the Williams River. Gloucester County was named after England. A full list of parishes found within this county, their current LGA and mapping coordinates to the approximate centre of each location is as follows: Department of Lands - Parish Map Preservation Project
Dave Sands, was an Indigenous Australian boxer. The man the Americans called the "boxer with the educated left hand" received his due when he was inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 1998 at a ceremony held in Los Angeles, recognised as one of the greatest boxers never to have won a world title. Dave was the 2009 Inductee for the Australian National Boxing Hall of Fame Veterans category. Born at Burnt Bridge Mission Kempsey, New South Wales, fifth of eight children of George Ritchie, a rodeo-rider and timber-cutter of mixed Aboriginal and European descent, his Aboriginal wife Mabel, née Russell. Sands' brothers Clement, George and Russell boxed, emulating their father and their maternal great-uncle Bailey Russell, a noted bare-knuckle fighter. In 1939 Percy travelled to Newcastle to train with Tom Maguire, At the age of 15 Sands joined Percy training with Maguire and both lived at Maguire's gym. Dave and his five brothers took on the Sands name, taken off a train guard "Snowy" Sands who helped Percy Ritchie, travel to fight fare free in 1940.
Without Maguire's knowledge, Dave fought a four-round preliminary bout in August 1941 at Newcastle Stadium, swinging his way to victory in the first round. Maguire disapproved, but transformed him into a skilled boxer. By the end of 1942 he had knocked out a dozen opponents at Newcastle. On 11 August 1945 he married 18-year-old Bessie Emma Burns at St Paul's Church of Stockton. Sands was soon boxing in twelve-round matches before excited crowds of up to ten thousand people in Brisbane and Sydney. In May 1946 he defeated Jack Kirkham for the Australian middleweight title. Three months he knocked out Jack Johnson in four rounds to become national light-heavyweight champion; the rematches were more one-sided: Kirkham was defeated in five rounds and Johnson fell after 2½ minutes of furious punching. By 1948 Sands had beaten all his local opponents and most American'imports', his mauling of a French fighter Tony Toniolo in less than two minutes in February 1949 led the English promoter Jack Solomons to take an interest in him.
Despite an enthusiastic reception from the British press, Sands began his campaign for a world title disastrously. In London on 4 April 1949, while suffering from a swollen vaccinated arm, he was outpointed by Tommy Yarosz. Fifteen days Sands won, against a spoiler, Lucien Caboche. Maguire moved him to Newcastle upon Tyne, where friendly locals and a promoter Joe Shepherd restored his confidence. After two solid victories, he returned to London and in July thrashed the much fancied Robert Villemain in the'fight of the year'. On 6 September Sands demolished Dick Turpin in 2 minutes 35 seconds for the British Empire middleweight title. Shortly after his triumphal return to Australia in November 1949, Sands survived a serious accident when the steering on his motorcar failed and the vehicle somersaulted into a creek. Over the next eighteen months he contested and won nine fights, one of them a fifteen-rounder in September 1950 in which he took the Australian heavyweight championship from Alf Gallagher.
Sands had become a leading contender for the world middleweight title and Maguire vainly sought to arrange a bout with the American champion'Sugar' Ray Robinson. In the tricky maze of international boxing-promotion, his efforts were marked by a'paper-chase' of offers and counter-offers. Sands defeated Mel Brown in London in July 1951 in a preliminary to a title-fight between Robinson and another contender Randolph Turpin. Had Maguire's negotiations succeeded, Sands would have been in Turpin's place and would have beaten an unfit Robinson, as did Turpin. In October 1951, Sands won two fights in the United States of America. Back home, he hoped for a world title-bout. A new manager Bede Kerr reopened discussions with Robinson's connections, but'the chance never came'. On 11 August 1952, the truck Sands was driving with 15 passengers overturned at roadworks near Dungog, New South Wales. Sands died of head and internal injuries that evening in the local hospital and was buried at Sandgate Cemetery, near Newcastle, New South Wales.
His wife, their son and two daughters survived him. Sands had earned about £30,000, but it went on manager's fees, travel costs, family expenses and generosity to his kin. A public appeal raised more than £2500, sufficient to pay off his Stockton home and create a trust fund for his family. Pictures held and digitised as part of the Arnold Thomas boxing collection by the National Library of Australia Dave Sands and Australian Middleweight Champion and Tom Maguire, trainer British Empire title bout, Dave Sands, 11 st. 5 lb. K. O. Dick Turpin, 11 st. 3¾ lb. in the first round at Harringay Arena, England, 6 September 1949 Dave Sands, 11 st. 7¾ lb. v. Henry Brimm, 11 st. 5½ lb. at Rushcutter's Bay Stadium, 8 August 1950
Murder of Leigh Leigh
The murder of Leigh Leigh, born Leigh Rennea Mears, occurred on 3 November 1989 while she was attending a 16-year-old boy's birthday party at Stockton Beach, New South Wales, on the east coast of Australia. The 14-year-old girl from Fern Bay was assaulted by a group of boys after she returned distressed from a sexual encounter on the beach that a reviewing judge called non-consensual. After being kicked and spat on by the group, Leigh left the party, her naked body was found in the sand dunes nearby the following morning, with severe genital damage and a crushed skull. Matthew Grant Webster, an 18-year-old who acted as a bouncer at the event, pleaded guilty to her murder and was sentenced to 20 years in prison with a 14-year non-parole period, he was released on parole after serving 14 1/2 years. Guy Charles Wilson, the other bouncer and only other person aged over 18 at the party, pleaded guilty to assault; the investigation of Leigh's murder proved controversial, however, as several people who admitted to various crimes, including assaulting Leigh, were never charged.
Webster's confession did not match the forensic evidence. The murder investigation was reviewed by the New South Wales Crime Commission in 1996, by the Police Integrity Commission in 1998, with the latter recommending the dismissal of the detective in charge of the investigation. Leigh's murder received considerable attention in the media. Focusing on her sexual assault and murder, media attention concentrated more on the lack of parental supervision and the drugs and alcohol at the party, on Leigh's sexuality; the media coverage of the murder has been cited as an example of blaming the victim. Leigh's murder inspired a theatrical play entitled A Property of the Clan, revised and renamed Blackrock, as well as a feature film of the same name. Leigh Leigh, born Leigh Rennea Mears on 24 July 1975, was the daughter of Robyn Lynne Maunsell and Robert William Mears. Leigh's grandmother said that Leigh lived with her between the ages of about four and seven, though she did not disclose reasons for this living arrangement.
Leigh's parents divorced. She moved back to live with her mother after her sister Jessie was born in 1983. At the time of her death she lived with her sister and stepfather Brad Shearman on Fullerton Road, Fern Bay, having moved there nine months earlier from a housing commission flat near the Stockton ferry terminal. Leigh was a Year Eight student at Newcastle High School who enjoyed school, according to her grandmother, she had attended three primary schools successively: St Patrick's in Swansea, Hamilton North Public School, St Peter's in Stockton. Leigh spent most of her weekends and school holidays with her grandmother at her house in Kilaben Bay, her cousin and best friend Tracey stated she and Leigh enjoyed going to the cinema together, as well as roller-skating and "just hanging about". According to her aunt, Leigh had wanted to be a veterinarian. Both Leigh's mother and her grandmother described her as a "typical teenager". Newcastle High School student Jason Robertson's 16th birthday party was held on 3 November 1989 at the North Stockton Surf Club, a abandoned building which the Stockton Lions Club had taken over four years prior, leasing it for various functions.
Police estimated that about 60 people had attended the party, though figures as high as 100 were reported in the media. Most of the attendees were Year Ten students from Newcastle High School, though two 10-year-olds were seen at the party at one point. Many were drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana, some were having sex. Fourteen-year-old Leigh had a written invitation to attend the party and permission from her mother to stay there until 11 pm. Matthew Webster and Guy Wilson, who acted as bouncers, were the only people aged over 18 at the party. Leigh was said to be excited, as it was the first teenage party she had attended. According to police witness reports, Leigh was one of several under-age girls who were invited to the party for the purpose of getting them intoxicated and having sex with them. According to a police report, Webster approached another person at the party and said, "Hey dude, we're going to get Leigh pissed and all go through her." Leigh was one of several under-age people for whom an adult purchased alcohol before the party.
She was reported to have gotten intoxicated quickly. A 15-year-old boy, who for legal reasons could not be named and was referred to in official documentation as'NC1', is quoted to have said, "I'm going to go and fuck." Shortly afterwards Leigh went to the beach with NC1. When Leigh returned from the beach, she was bleeding between her legs, distressed and seeking assistance; some people at the party reported trying to find out what had happened to her. After witnessing Leigh's complaints, Webster is quoted as saying to a group of boys "she's a bit of a slut and why don't all of us have a go". Nineteen-year-old Guy Wilson approached Leigh, placed his arm around her and asked her for sex. Wilson pushed Leigh to the ground when she refused, was joined by Webster and around ten other boys who surrounded Leigh, they yelled abuse, kicked her, poured beer on her and spat both