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Australia was discovered by an Englishman called James Cook, he was born in Yorkshire the 27th of October 1728. He boarded Australia in 1770. When Cook came to Australia there already lived people there, the aborigines. Today the aborigines have it really hard, many of them are unemployed and they have a hard time to support themselves. James Cook died the 14th of February, probably by cannibals.

After James Cook came to Australia many "white men" came to this wonderful island. And the aborigines were more and more separated and mistreated. The living conditions in Australia are good in general as in most industrial countries. But there is one exception. That exception is the aborigines. Ever since the white man came to Australia the living conditions for the aborigines have become worse. You can compare them with the Indians in the United States. Even though they were the original inhabitants in Australia they were killed when the white men declared the country as their own. The ones that weren't kill in these massacres were driven away to the most deserted part of the country. This took place between 1788 when the white man first come to Australia and 1930 when they declared the aborigines as a dying stone aged people. In the 1950´s the aborigines and a few white people started the struggle to achieve better living conditions for the aborigines. But it was not until 1967 that the aborigines were accepted as citizens in their own country. In 1976 the government decided to return big areas of land to the aborigines. But the living conditions for the aborigines are still much worse than for the white Australians. The aborigines usually live much shorter than the white Australians do. Infant mortality is higher, general health is worse, unemployment is higher, but the biggest problem today for the aborigines is alcoholism. But the aborigines represent less than 2% of the population in Australia. So most people in Australia has got much better living conditions compered with the aborigines. Most people live in the big cities in Southeast like Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. Only 10-15% of the population of Australia lives out in the bush. Most white people seem to hold on to British rule models like English public schools, tea traditions and sports like cricket etc.

 Sports are a very important part of the Australian culture. That shouldn't be so hard to see when you think of all the good weather and the closeness to nice beaches. But nevertheless the Australians spend more money on art and music compared with what they spend on sport. It is not a coincidence that the Opera house in Sydney is the most well known building in Australia. The present population is about 19 million peoples. Over 90% are white, most of them come from Great Britain and Ireland. 6% are Asian and only 2% are aborigines. The most spoken language is English, but the aborigines speak a language called "austral" that's a mix-up between English and the aborigine's own language.

Many people think that Sydney is the Capitol City but the Capitol City is a little town called Canberra. It only lives about 300 000 people there and 3,6 million in Sydney. So you can't blame people that thinks that Sydney is the Capitol City. Sydney is Australia's biggest city. Sydney is very famous for their participation in the Olympics (OS). And of course for the biggest opera house in the world. A Danish called Jorn Utzon wrote the constructions papers.

Australia is also an island that also is a continent. It contains of two landmasses, the mainland and Tasmania. In area it is the 6th largest country and the smallest continent. Its area is 7,682,300 square km. It contains 6 states, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia.

Australia is one of the oldest continents, the effects of over 250 million years of erosion have turned it into a flat, low lying and stable land mass. It has a wide variety of landforms. Much of the flat inland is desert. But the thing that makes Australia so popular is of course the beaches, the warm climate, the nature and their undersea nature. They have a thing called "The Great Barrier Reef" it´s more than 2000 km of living undersea creatures. The islands surrounding the reef are home for more than 16000 living species. And about 2500 of them are endangered. One of the species is the Koala bear.

The Koala is a teddy bear-looking animal. It is 80 centimetres tall and can weigh up to 15 kg. The Koala multiplies very slowly and gives birth to a kid-koala every second year. The koala's coat is very thick which is very strange for a warm climate like in Australia. It original comes from the big slopes of the Himalayas. The Koala wandered to Australia before there even existed an Australia of its own, before the two continents were separated. The Koala is a night animal who sleeps very much at the day and search for food at night. It sleeps about 19 hours and searches for food the rest of the time. A Koala always sleeps and lives alone that to mark their territory. The numbers of Koala bears have been decreased very much the last ten years. There are many reasons to that. One of the biggest is sexual diseases. According to scientists approximately half the Koala bears have "Klamydia".  Another big problem is their environment. The eucalyptus trees are slashed down which means that the Koala bears have a big problem to find food. The Koala is a very particular animal who lives mostly of leaves from the eucalyptus tree. But when they are forced down to the ground to look for food they often become victims for cars, dogs and cats. Koala means, in aborigine (Austral) "no water" or "no drinking".

The boomerang is a well-known symbol for the aborigines. It´s a mystical throwing weapon that was used a lot in Australia. Nowadays it's a popular souvenir. It's used to play games or sports. There are many different sizes and shapes on them. The most popular boomerang is probably that one that comes back to you after you thrown it. Aborigines and their children used the smaller model when they were playing and a larger one for hunting. The biggest one could be 2 metres tall, but it had a disadvantage. It didn't co...

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