Australian Facts For Australia Day
January 26th 2007 00:25
As today is Australia Day - here are some interesting Australian facts.
* The Australian Coat Of Arms has on it a kangaroo and an emu. The reason for this is that the kangaroo and the emu cannot go backwards but can only walk forwards.
* Australia is the sixth largest country after Russia, Canada, China, the United States of America and Brazil. However our population remains relatively small at just over 20 million.
* Australia is the only country that is a continent. The mainland is the largest island and the smallest, flattest continent on Earth.
* Australia is the driest, inhabited continent on earth. The only continent drier than Australia is Antarctica.
* The interior has one of the lowest rainfalls in the world and about three-quarters of the land is arid or semi-arid.
* More than 40 000 years before the arrival of European settlers, there were an estimated 300,000 indigenous Australians living on the continent.
* On the 26th of January, 1788, The First Fleet of 11 ships with 1500 aboard, half of them convicts from Britain, arrived at the south eastern shores of Australia. The town of Sydney grew from that first small, British penal settlement. Australia day commemorates this.
* In 1988 at the Bicentenary, 51% of Australians couldn't see any good reason for celebrating.
* There are many claims to the fact that that the first European settlers in Australia drank more alcohol per head of population than any other community in the history of mankind.
* Convicts being transported to New South Wales continued up until 1840, but they were still taken to Western Australia until 1868.
* Australia, founded by convicts. The homicide rate is in Australia is 1.8 per 100,000 of population. The United States was founded by religious zealots. It's homicide rate is 6.3 per 100,000. Almost 400% greater than Australia.
* About 160,000 convicts arrived over 80 years. That compares with free settler arrivals as high as 50 000 a year.
* About 30% of the population was born overseas
* Four out of 10 Australians are migrants or the first-generation children of migrants.
* Aborigines, the indigenous people, now only make up 1.5 % of the population. There are no Tasmanian full blooded aboriginals left. They were also different in appearance from the mainland aborigines.
* Sydney is the largest city with over 4 million people, while the capital Canberra has around 300,000.http://www.funfacts.com.au/australian-f ... ralia-day/