Australia, the big land down under. As per world standards, the environment in Australia is odd, and its people and history are unique. From beer swilling Prime Ministers to a convict run police force, join us as we countdown 20 unusual facts about this great country that will positively fry ya noggin’.
20. It Had Convicted Cops
The first police force in this country comprised of 12 convicts who had the best behavior.
19. Sheep and Rabbits
Australia has a larger population of sheep in comparison to people. There are over 150 million sheep and just 20 million people. It would be fair to say, that is roughly eight sheep per person. There are also over 16 rabbits per household. The rabbits were introduced by an entrepreneur who came with twenty-four wild rabbits from England. He did that because he felt they could remind him of home.
18. Flash Mob
The first ever flash mob in the world happened in Australia. Back in 1832, 300 women convicts at a Tasmanian prison collectively turned around, pulled up their skirts and slapped their buttocks at the Governor during an assembly.
17. Australia Has a Pink Lake!
As unbelievable as this sounds it is true. Lake Hillier is on Middle Island, and it is pink. From above, the lake looks like a solid piece of pink bubblegum. However, no-one can fully explain this occurrence though scientists hypothesize that the colour is from a dye formed by bacteria in the salt crusts.
16. Beach Restrictions
Between the years 1838- 1902, it was prohibited to swim at public beaches in daylight. If you wanted to swim, you had to do so under the cover of darkness. The restrictions were lifted in 1902 after a vigorous campaign by William Gocher.
Australia has the largest number of pure bread camels in the world. There are roughly 750,000 camels roaming Australia’s outback. They were taken there in the 1800s to aid in rail construction, however after the introduction of the internal combustion engine they were released into the wild where, without a natural predator, their numbers flourished.
Australians are famous for splurging the most cash on gambling than any other nation. Australia has less than 1 percent of the global population yet it has over 20 percent of the world’s pokie machines.
13. Homicide Rate
Yes, Australia had convicts as police in the early days. However, its homicide rate is way lower than that of the United States. Australia’s rate is 1.2 per 100,000 while the USA has a rate of 6.3 per 100,000.
12. Coat of Arms
Australians state that the reason that Kangaroos and Emus are on the country’s coat of arms is because these animals cannot walk backward. It is also the only country where its people eat the animals on their coat of arms.
11. Women’s Right to Vote
Globally, Australia came in second after New Zealand in allowing women to vote.
10. Slow Internet Download Speeds
The Internet download speeds in Australia are notoriously slow. They are slower than that in Madagascar and Kazakhstan.
9. Politician with a Beer Sculling Record
Bob Hawke, Australia’s ex-Prime Minister, got a worldwide record after drinking 2.5 pints of beer within 11 seconds. He later became the country’s most popular Prime Minister.
8. It has the Longest Fence
Australia’s Dingo fence is the longest fence globally and is twice the length of the Great Wall of China. The 5,614 km fence was initially made to fend off dingoes from productive land.
7. Deadly Snakes
The majority of the world’s most deadly snakes are found in Australia. In fact, the top 5 most venomous snakes are found slithering about the great southern land.
6. Payments in Booze
In the early settlement days, rum was the main currency instead of money. It was used to pay military officers and prisoners for tedious labor. In Australia, the first European settlers consumed more alcohol than any other community in history. Some historians have even hypothesized that our slurred accent originated from us being drunk all the time.
5. More Snow than Switzerland
The Australian alpine region known as the Snowy Mountains receives more snowfall than all of Switzerland.
4. Urbanized Coastal Dwelling
Over 80% of Australians reside within 100 km of the coast, and this makes Australia one of the most industrial coastal dwelling populations in the world.
3. Newspaper Readers
Australians read more newspapers than any other country in the world.
2. No Hot Pink Pants!
In Victoria, wearing hot pink pants on Sundays past midday is illegal.
1. The Swim That Did Not Need a Towel
Former Prime Minister, Harold Holt, went swimming near Portsea, at Cheviot Beach on 17th Dec 1967. He was never seen again. Some suggest he was eaten by sharks others says the tide swept him away, and some even say that he was kidnapped by a Russian submarine.
These are just a few unusual facts about Australia, it sure is a bloody unique country. What do you think, did this top 20 miss any cracking facts about Australia? If it did let us know on Twitter and Facebook.