Historians The first inhabitants of Australia were the Aborigines, who migrated there at least 40.000 years ago from Southeast Asia. There may have been between a half million to a full million Aborigines at the time of European settlement; today about 350.000 live in Australia. Dutch, Portuguese, and Spanish ships sighted Australia in the 17th century. The Dutch landed at the Gulf of Carpentaria in 1606. In 1616 the territory became known as New Holland. The British arrived in 1688, but it was not until Captain James Cooks voyage in 1770 that Great Britain claimed possession of the vast island, calling it New South Wales. A British penal colony was set up at Port Jackson (what is now Sydney) in 1788, and about 161.000 transported English convicts were settled there.
The first colonies New South Wales (1786) Tasmania (then Van Diemens Land) (1825) Western Australia(1829) South Australia (1834) Victoria (1851) Queensland (1859)
Geographers Australias landmass of 7.617.930 square kilometres is on the Indo-Australian Plate. Surrounded by the Indian and Pacific oceans, it is separated from Asia by the Arafura and Timor seas. The worlds smallest continent and sixth largest country by total area. Australia—owing to its size and isolation—is often dubbed the “island continent” and variably considered the worlds largest island.
Geographical position The continent of Australia, with the island state of Tasmania, isapproximately equal in area to the United States (excluding Alaska andHawaii). Mountain ranges run from north to south along the east coast,reaching their highest point in Mount Kosciusko (7,308 ft; 2,228 m). The western half of the continent is occupied by a desert plateauthat rises into barren, rolling hills near the west coast. The GreatBarrier Reef, extending about 1,245 mi (2,000 km), lies along thenortheast coast. The island of Tasmania (26,178 sq mi; 67,800 sq km) is off thesoutheast coast. Uluru, also referred to as Ayers Rock, is a large sandstone rockformation in the southern part of the Northern Territory, centralAustralia.
Major cities of AustraliaThe capital and largestcity of the Australianstate of WesternAustralia is… The largest city in Australia and Oceania is… Australia Capital is…
CanberraParliament house Carillion Captain Cook Jet and National Library
SydneyThe Sydney Opera House Downtown from the RocksSydney Harbour Bridge Sydney Harbour
PerthSkyline of Perth Gouvernment House Hay Street
Biologists The flora of Australia comprises a vast assemblage of plant species estimated to over 20.000 vascular and 14.000 non-vascular plants, 250.000 species of fungi and over 3.000 lichens. The flora has strong affinities with theAUSTRALIAN flora of Gondwana, and below the family level has a highly endemic angiosperm flora whose FLORA diversity was shaped by the effects of continental drift and climate change since the Cretaceous. Prominent features of the Australian flora are adaptations to aridity and fire which include scleromorphy and serotiny. These adaptations are common in species from the large and well-known families Proteaceae (Banksia), Myrtaceae (Eucalyptus - gum trees), and Fabaceae (Acacia - wattle).
The fauna of Australia consists of a huge variety of animals; some 83% of mammals, 89% of reptiles, 90% of fish and insects and 93% of amphibians that inhabit the continent are endemic to Australia. A unique feature of Australias fauna is the relative scarcity of native placental mammals. Consequently the marsupials—a groupAUSTRALIAN of mammals that raise their young in a pouch, including the macropods , possums and FAUNA dasyuromorphs — occupy many of the ecological niches placental animals occupy elsewhere in the world. Australia is home to numerous venomous species, which include the Platypus, spiders, scorpions, octopus, jellyfish, molluscs, stonefish, and stingrays. Uniquely, Australia has more venomous than non-venomous species of snakes.
Some aspects during thedevelopment of the project
Bibliography http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia http://www.e-australia.com.au/flora-and-fauna/ http://australian-animals.net/ http://www.australia.com/index.aspx http://wikitravel.org/ro/Australia http://www.csu.edu.au/australia/ Jeremy Harmer-The Practice of EnglishLanguage Teaching