Australian Dictionary

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Albany Pitcher Plant

Albany Pitcher Plant Cephalotus follicularis)

AJA—Australian Journalists' Association.

Ajabakan—an Aboriginal tribe.

Ajabatha—an Aboriginal tribe. No information available.

AJC—Australian Jockey Club.

Akubra—the Aboriginal word for head covering. Aussies in World Wars I and II wore these hats, which were produced by the Akubra company. Although it wasn't until around 1918 that they began branding their hats "Akubra", the true Akubra is still made by the same family company that created it.

ALA—(see: Aboriginal Advancement League).

Alaua—alternate spelling of Alawa.

Alawa—an Aboriginal tribe. No information available.

Albany—the oldest European settlement in Western Australia. British eagerness for new penal colonies was seconded by the plan to close down the penal colony at Port Macquarie, and open that area up to settlement. To this end, a small contingent of soldiers and convicts was sent in 1826 to the south coast of Western Australia. The city is located on King George Sound, which was discovered and named "King George the Third's Sound" on 28th September, 1791, by Captain Vancouver. This name disappeared about 1831 and the name Albany was retained for the whole town. The town of Albany was officially named by Governor Stirling at the beginning of 1832. It is named in honour of Frederick, De of Albany and York, who was the favourite son of King George III. Albany was originally a whaling port, and the whaling station here was the last to operate in Australia. In the 1850s, the town also became a coaling station for steamers from England. Now, it is the region's administrative hub and the central shipping point for the wheatbelt. Situated on the edge of King George Sound and the Princess Royal Harbour, 408km south of Perth.

Albany doctor—a summer breeze off the turbulent Southern Ocean. This cooling relief from the Western Australian heat is very welcome in the city near Adelaide for which it is named. However, it does on occasion whip into devastating cyclonic winds.

Albany pitcher plantCephalotus follicularis, Labillardiére (1806), the only known species in this genus, is native to the extreme south-western part of Australia (near the town of Albany) where it lives on the margins of freshwater wetlands, ditches, and slow streams. a small, low growing, herbaceous species. Evergreen leaves appear from underground rhizomes, are simple with an entire leaf blade, and lie close to the ground. The insectivorous leaves are small and have the appearance of moccasins, forming the 'pitcher' of the common name. The pitchers develop a dark red colour in high light levels but stay green in shadier conditions. The foliage is a basal arrangement that is closely arranged with outward facing adapted leaf blades. These leaves give the main form of the species, the height is around 200mm. The 'pitcher' trap of the species is similar to other pitcher plants. The peristome at the entrance of the trap has a spiked arrangement that allows the prey to enter, but hinders its escape. The lid over the entrance, the operculum, prevents rainwater entering the pitcher and thus diluting the digestive enzymes inside. Insects trapped in this digestive fluid are consumed by the plant. The operculum has translucent cells which confuse its insect prey, as they appear to be patches of sky. The inflorescence is groupings of small, hermaphroditic, six-parted, regular flowers, which are creamy, or whitish. In the cooler months of winter (down to about 5 degrees Celsius), they have a natural dormancy period of about 3-4 months, triggered by the temperature drop and reduced light levels. In the spring it produces a normal photosynthetic leaf that is not shaped like a trap. These last only one year and provide the plant with its stored carbon through photosynthesis. As these leaves reach their peak production, pitcher leaves begin to appear. Although these resemble those of Nepenthes, they are attached to their stalks at the back, whereas in Nepenthes they are attached at the base. And they are generally smaller, mostly about 3cm, reaching a maximum of 6cm. Once the leaves mature, the lids open and expose the pitcher full of digestive fluid. Ribs on the outside of the pitchers are adorned with nectar glands that attract insects, mostly ants, and lure them to the open trap. The lids may close if the plant begins to dry, thus protecting it from loss of its digestive fluid. The pitchers of Cephalotus nestle close to each other and are usually found in moss at ground level. The Albany pitcher plant grows in scrubby areas that are moist all year around, on sandy soils that are acid, a habitat rather like that of many other carnivorous plants. The Albany pitcher plant flowers in late summer, after most other plants in the region where it grows have flowered. The flowers of Cephalotus have size sepals, six petals (rather hooded), six stamens. The six carpels are at the bottom of a bowl-like disk. These features are somewhat like those of saxifrages, and that was long thought to be the family closest to Cephalotaceae. The flowers of Cephalotus are, in fact, somewhat like those of saxifrages. But DNA evidence has now revealed a slightly closer relationship to Oxalis and its relatives. But it's still clearly in its own family.

Albatross Bay—a large, shallow bay located near the original township of Weipa in the Gulf of Carpentaria, this is where Dutch explorer Willem Janz made the first known European landing (1606). The bay is fed by four rivers that comprise an extensive estuarine system supporting a diversity of habitats and wildlife, including seagrass beds, mangrove communities, soft bottom habitats, fisheries resources, rocky reefs, and significant populations of seabirds, dugongs, turtles and saltwater crocodiles. The coastal plains and fresh/saltwater swamps in the port region comprise closed forest, closed scrub, low closed forest, and mangrove heath on loose to firm estuarine sediments. The swamps and outflows of the Weipa area are intrinsic to the successful cycle of drying out, flowering, regeneration, emergence and growth of flora and fauna, and provide habitats for wildlife during the drier periods.

Albert's lyrebirdMenura alberti, smaller and darker than, and lacking the outer lyre-shaped tail feathers of, the male superb lyrebird. During the breeding season, its song is a major feature of the rainforest within Lamington National Park. The male builds a display panel of trampled vegetation. Females are attracted to the mound by the male's display and song. The male engages in spectacular displays through winter. It does this by drawing its tail feather up over his body and shimmering them. Male birds will mate with several females, and although they appear to know where the nests are, they take no part in building them or incubating and feeding the young. The breeding season occurs from late May to early August. The range of Albert’s lyrebird is restricted to a small area of sub-tropical rainforest within Lamington National Park, near the Queensland/New South Wales border. Due to its specialised habitat, the Albert's lyrebird is an endangered species, and the clearing of rainforest would probably lead to the bird's extinction.

Alcoota cleaver-headed crocodileBaru species, lived 8 million years ago in the late Miocene. This large crocodile is similar to the cleaver-headed crocodile of Riversleigh, but even larger. In fact, it was the largest crocodile to live in Australia during Miocene times. Its long, curved teeth made quick work of the animals that were its prey; growing up to four metres or more in length, this monster had a powerfully built head lined with fearsome teeth that could hack out chunks of flesh from its still-living victims. Fossils were discovered at Alcoota Station in the Northern Territory, the first of which had part of a marsupial lion skull in its jaw. Staying out of the water was no protection against the Alcoota cleaver-headed crocodile—it was partly terrestrial, spending plenty of time on the land.

Alcoota fossil beds—located on Alcoota station, an area of land measuring almost 3000sq km north-east of Alice Springs in Central Australia. The Alcoota Fossil Beds are one of only three known fossil sites in the Northern Territory. The others are Bullock Creek and Kangaroo Wells. The Alcoota deposit represents a series of intermittently interconnected lakes within a large basin. Evidence points to dry periods during which animals concentrated in the immediate area of the spring, resulting in a crisis, termed 'waterhole tethering', in which large numbers of animals died as the waterhole became smaller. This resulted in the concentration of fossils found here, a unique occurrence of well-preserved and often rare vertebrate fossils from 8 million years ago, in the Tertiary Era. The bones at Alcoota are buried in soft sediments and are excavated using picks, awls and brushes. Most bones are hardened with special glues to prevent them from drying and crumbling as they are removed from the dirt. Very large or fragile bones need special attention—these are jacketed with plaster before transporting them back to the Alice Springs lab of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory for further preparation.

Alcoota KolopsisKolopsis torus, a diprotodontoid marsupial that browsed on leaves and stems in the subtropical open woodlands 8 million years ago, in the late Miocene era. Its closest living relatives are the wombats and koalas. It was 1.5m long and 80cm tall at the shoulder, and probably travelled in large herds.

Alcoota Station—an area of land measuring almost 3000sq km and almost 200km north-east of Alice Springs in Central Australia. The Alcoota fossil beds are located here, one of only three known fossil sites in the Northern Territory. The grass-covered plains form a thin veneer over an enormous bed of fossil bones that are around eight million years old. The bones are so abundant and tightly packed at Alcoota that it is sometimes difficult to excavate one bone without breaking the one below it. The animals include one of the largest birds that ever lived, the gigantic thunder bird Dromornis stirtoni, the wolf-sized powerful thylacine (Thylacinus potens) and the large leopard-sized Alcoota marsupial lion (Wakaleo alcootense). Also found at Alcoota are fossils of herds of the wombat-like diprotodontoids Kolopsis torus and Plaisiodon centralis, the trunked Palorchestes painei, as well as kangaroos, crocodiles, bandicoots, possums and small birds.

Aldiss Gold Project—(AGP) has a resource of 455,210 oz gold and is located approximately 130km to the east of Kalgoorlie. The AGP contains a series of deposits and prospects. Open cut mining was conducted by Freeport at the Karonie “Main Zone” pit from 1987 to 1992. Exploration potential within the newly acquired tenements, the result of work in the recent past by St Ives and WMC, targeted prospects with publicly stated potential to host 1M oz deposits or to support a stand-alone plant. Several large prospects have been located with the potential to host deposits of less than 1M oz and which have been only partly explored by wide spaced air-core, RC and rare diamond drilling. The AGP is located within the Karonie Belt of Archaean greenstone rocks, along the Aldiss Fault and Karonie Fault and within the eastern goldfields region of the Yilgarn Craton, Western Australia.

Alexander Morrison National Park—8501 hectares of undulating sandplain hills interspersed with rocky outcrops, low scrub and heath, this is a coastal park fronting onto the Great Australian Bight. There are a number of stunning, untouched beaches and even a couple of mountains to climb. Eucalypts grow along narrow streambeds that cut across the landscape, and mallee thickets are quite common through the park. During the winter months, whales can often be seen cavorting in the coastal waters. The fishing is considered excellent, and camping is available at Point Ann, Quoin Head, Fitzgerald Inlet and Hamersley Inlet. There's no reliable water in the park and no camp fires are allowed. Located on the central west coast of Western Australia, 240km west of Esperance or 230km north of Perth.

Alexandra Cave—consists of several highly decorated chambers, with some fossil-bearing sediment. Discovered by William Reddan in 1908 and opened for public inspection in 1909, the cave takes its name from the wife of King Edward VII of England, Queen Alexandra. Visitors to the cave are treated to a visual spectacle of enormous domed chambers, delicate cave formations and spectacular scenes such as the "Mirror Pool" and huge straw clusters. Located in Naracoorte Caves National Park, it is one of the 26 caves at Naracoorte, featuring outstanding examples of calcite formations known as speleothems. These can form anywhere in a cave where water is passing through limestone, absorbing carbon dioxide and dissolving minute amounts of calcium carbonate (limestone) and depositing it as calcite in the cave. The type of speleothems that form are determined by how fast the water drips, where it drips, the cave microclimate, carbon dioxide content of the air and even the shape of the cave.

Alexandra palmArchontophoenix alexandrae, a tall, solitary, handsome palm to about 25m tall with a spread of about 2-2.5m and a gracefull appearance. The leaves, up to about 2m long, are stiff, pinnately compound, feather-like fronds and have a tendency to rotate 90' to expose the whole leaf in profile. The leaflets are all in the same plane, bright green above with a silvery underside. The base of the petioles form a bright green crownshaft that the leaves rarely droop below. The trunk is smooth and ringed with noticible leaf scars and the base can be noticibly swollen. It can get to about 1/3m in diameter. Flowers are formed below the crownshaft, with the creamy flower stalks holding amythest purple flowers. The round fruit, about 12mm in diameter, turn bright red at maturit. Endemic to Queensland, this tree grows in littoral rainforest, often in locations that are severely inundated during heavy rain events. Their ability to withstand these conditions allows them to become the dominant species. It is distinguished by a bulbous base ringed with prominent ridges where old fronds have been shed during growth. These wide, scoop-shaped fronds were used by Aborigines for carrying water and other items. Named for Alexandra, Princess of Wales.

Alexandra's parrotPolytelis alexandrae, named in 1863 by John Gould, celebrated painter of native bird life, to celebrate the marriage of Alexandra, Princess of Wales. Considered by many to be one of the most exquisitely coloured and proportioned of any bird, Alexandra's parrot is a rare and elusive inhabitant of Australia's inland desert regions. Slender and lime green, it has long pink and black tail feathers (male). Its beak is strawberry pink and its throat is washed with rose. Its crown is cornflower blue and its chest is a drab mustard yellow-grey. Although discovered in 1862 and very common in the aviary trade, it is rarely seen in the wild. It inhabits the harsh inland deserts of the state, including the Canning Stock Route, where it is most often seen. It seems to prefer true desert and is not often seen in areas such as the Pilbara or Goldfields. It is also found throughout the arid Tanami region of the Northern Territory and possibly extends into arid Queensland. They are most likely to inhabit inland watercourses, where breeding takes place in hollow eucalypts and several pairs may congregate to breed. Some five to six weeks after hatching, young accompany the parents in an exodus from the breeding area. Feeding and foraging take place on the ground, as parrots search for spinifex seeds. They are also known to feed on Acacia blossoms and mistletoe berries. Populations of this parrot are subject to large variations in density, resulting in large flocks in some years and few individuals in other years. When parrots are sighted, they are usually travelling in small flocks or pairs. Also known as the Princess parrot (parakeet).

ALF—Australian League Football.

Alf—a gormless male.

alfoil—aluminium foil; a brand name which has supplanted the original term.

Alfred National Park—a small park in one of the least populated parts of Victoria, with some of the most southerly occurrences of warm temperate rainforest in Australia. Many plant species found here are uncommon in the rest of Victoria, including numerous native orchids and Victorian tree ferns. Lilly pilly and kanooka trees are also common in the park. The many bird and animal species inhabiting this nationally important rainforest include the threatened powerful owl, sooty owl, long-footed potoroo, bent-wing bat, and spot-tailed quoll. The Alfred Park protects high conservation values, rare flora and fauna, and diverse landscape values. Located in Victoria.

algal bloom—blue-green algae populations can 'bloom', multiplying at such a rate that they dominate the local aquatic environment. Some species of blue-green algae produce toxins that are dangerous to animal life. The decomposition of dead blue-green algal cells by bacteria consumes oxygen. When billions of such cells die during a bloom, the water becomes oxygen-depleted. This can lead to the death of other marine organisms, including fish and coral polyps such as those that make up the Great Barrier Reef.

Alice—(often: The Alice) Alice Springs, Northern Territory.

Alice Springs—an historic outback town in the Northern Territory. Established in 1872, the original European settlement sprang up around the installation of a telegraph station. The town is named after the wife of the guy who sunk the first well into the spring near the Todd river. The only road to and from Alice passable by an ordinary car was not laid until 1987. Previously, all travellers were over landers—bouncing along the 1500 mile dirt track from Darwin or Adelaide. To this day, routes to any other destinations have to made for thousands of kilometers over land in a four wheel drive Now a major tourist destination for Australian and overseas visitors alike, the area also supports a large cattle industry. Situated in the heart of Central Australia, the town is also an important defence location, site of the US/Australian Pine Gap Joint Defence Satellite monitoring base. The area has been home to the Arrente Aboriginal group for over 20,000 years.

Alice Springs Orogeny—a blanket term for all convergent deformation in Central Australia spanning the Late Ordovician to Late Carboniferous. At least 3 major periods of deformation occurred; the Rodingan Movement (450-430Ma), the Pertnjara Movement (395-375Ma) and the Mt Eclipse Movement (340-310Ma). Ordovician extension was terminated at 450Ma by the onset of convergent subduction at Australia’s eastern margin. This led to widespread tectonism in the Lachlan Fold Belt during the Benambran Orogeny. We interpret this tectonism to have extended NE beneath the Cooper-Eromanga Basin into Central Australia. This phase of deformation marked the start of the Alice Springs Orogeny, and is known as the Rodingan Movement.

alienated land—land held in freehold title, i.e. land that no longer belongs to the British Crown. When Crown land has been sold, granted or leased to a person or company, that land is said to be alienated from the government, and alienated to the new possessor/s of that land. The resulting transference of land rights is of particular importance in relation to native title. Aboriginal Australians may be entitled to any lands which, as well as having been of traditional ownership, has also not been alienated from the Crown estate.

alienated to the company—(see: alienated land).

alkie/alky—alcoholic; a heavy drinker.

all a-twitter—agitated.

all alone like a country dunny—forlorn; without company; alone and dejected.

all at sixes and sevens—perplexed; mixed up; floundering with a task, situation: e.g., He's all at sixes and sevens when it comes to cooking.

all beer and skittles—easy task; easy going: e.g., Life is not all beer and skittles.

All Blacks—the national representative rugby union team of New Zealand. The first usage apparently dates from the first tour of Britain by a New Zealand national rugby team, given the title The Originals, in 1905/1906. According to Billy Wallace, one of the members of the Originals, the "All Blacks" name originated in a London newspaper's description of the New Zealand representatives playing as if they were all backs. Other sources suggest that it is more likely that the name originated in the black uniform worn by the players, with earlier reference to "the Blacks" as a common type of nickname at the time. In 1925, when the Invincibles toured the Home Nations, the entirely black playing uniform was emblazoned with the silver fern symbol. The All Blacks perform a haka (Maori war dance) before each international match. For much of the 20th century, rugby union appeared to be New Zealand's national religion, with selection to the All Blacks perhaps more highly regarded than a knighthood.

all cush—all right; okay; without problems.

all done up like a sore toe—dressed in one's best clothes; an ironic reference to the "toe rag" commonly seen in the days before packaged sterile bandages were available.

all froth and bubble—lacking substance.

all laired/mockered up—dressed in one's best clothes

.all my eye and Betty Martin!—expression of disbelief.

all out—exhausted; tired: e.g. I'm all out after all that work.

all over—characteristically; typically: e.g., He's a dinkum footy fan all over.

all over (one) like a rash—said of someone whose attentions are annoyingly persistent.

all over the place like a madwoman's breakfast/custard/knitting/lunch-box/shit—complete disarray or disorganisation.

all piss and wind—boastful, garrulous and insincere in conversation, especially when drunk.

all ponced up—dressed smartly, or in one's best (said of males); used to imply a feminised appearance, or as a jocular form of compliment.

all Sir Garnet—all right; okay; doing well: e.g., Everything's all Sir Garnet.

all the go—1. state of affairs; situation: e.g., What's the go? 2. energy; enthusiasm: e.g., He's got a lot of go in him. 3. definite arrangement: e.g., The party's a go for next Friday. 4. attack; fight: e.g., That dog looks savage enough to go anyone who steps through the gate.

all the rage—said of a current trend or fashion: e.g., In the outback, 4WD-driving is all the rage.

all the world and his wife—hyperbole for everybody.

all wool and a yard wide—authentic; honest; sincere; scrupulous: derived from the high regard that has always attended the wool industry in Australia.

all-in—tired out; exhausted.

all-out—total; complete: e.g., He's an all-out fool.

Allambie Aboriginal Land—one of two properties purchased by the Victorian government and vested in the Kerrup Jmara Elders Aboriginal Corporation. The other property is Muldoon. Allambie and Muldoon are north and south respectively of the Lake Condah Mission, and border Mount Eccles National Park in Victoria.

Allaua—alternate spelling of Alawa.

Allaua—alternate spelling of Alawa.

Allaua—alternate spelling of Alawa.

alley up—pay back (a debt); pay up (a bet).

Alligator Gorge—a popular feature of the Mount Remarkable National Park, noted for a wide array of Australian flora and fauna. Mambray Creek with its canopy of river red gums winds from the gorge to the Spencer Gulf. Emus and red kangaroos roam the open plain surrounding the gorge. On the higher slopes are found the rock-climbing kangaroos, such as the commonly seen euro and the rarer yellow-footed rock-wallaby. Sign-posted trails range from gentle, one-hour strolls through to challenging 15km hikes through the deep gorges in red-brown quartzite.

alligator pear—an avocado.

Alligator Rivers—the name of a region in the Arnhem Land region of the Northern Territory, containing three rivers—the East, West and South Alligator River. It is regarded as one of the richest biological regions in Australia, with part of the region in the Kakadu National Park, and is an Important Bird Area (IBA) lying to the east of the Adelaide and Mary River Floodplains IBA. It also contains mineral deposits, especially uranium—the Ranger Uranium Mine is located there. They were explored by Lieutenant Phillip Parker King in 1820, who named them in the mistaken belief that the crocodiles in the estuaries were alligators. The East Alligator River is approximately 160km long. After rising in the northern part of the Arnhem Land Plateau, it flows with tributary streams towards the north-west through magnificent canyons towards the Van Diemen Gulf, which it meets at Point Farewell. The South Alligator River is also about 160km long. It rises north of Mount Stow also on the Arnhem Land plateau, flowing north-westerly in a valley containing a number of disused uranium mines developed between 1955 and 1965, finishing in the Van Diemen Gulf of the Timor Sea. The West Alligator River rises in the lowlands and is 80km long. The Wildman River also flows in the region. The river system has a number of spectacular waterfalls, including the Jim Jim Falls on Jim Jim Creek and the Twin Falls on Twin Falls Creek. The rivers have created the alluvial plains, including the mangrove swamps, over the past 20,000 years. Like much of northern Australia, the Alligator Rivers region has a monsoon climate. The dry season lasts between May and September while the wet season lasts between November and March. April and October are transitional periods between the two seasons. The three Alligator Rivers are perennial rivers flowing even during the dry season, though all the tributaries dry up in places during that period. The land dries out, and the wildlife concentrates around the permanent water sources such as the rivers, springs, waterholes and billabongs. During the wet season, the savanna turns green, the wildlife spreads out, the bird life returns and the streams flood into adjacent lands turning them into swamps. There are 46 species of fish in the river system, representing approximately a quarter of all known species existing in Australia. The region also features high populations of the dusky rat and its predator the water python. New vertebrate species are still being discovered in the region, notably the Kakadu dunnart and the Kakadu pebble-mound mouse. The Alligator Rivers area is known for its rich collection of waterfowl such as magpie geese, ducks, herons, ibises and spoonbills. The Alligators Rivers floodplains form a 383,000ha Important Bird Area which it is estimated to support some five million waterbirds, including over 1% of the global population of 22 species, significant numbers of three near threatened species, with another 11 restricted-range or savanna-biome-restricted species. Aboriginal people have lived continuously in the Alligator Rivers Region for 50,000 years. The region accordingly has a rich heritage, with more than 1500 cave paintings and rock carvings. The southern part of Kakadu contains a number of sites relating to Bula, a god associated with creation, and these sites are considered to be both sacred and dangerous to the Aboriginal people. There is also art relating to contact with Makassan traders and Europeans. At Ubirr Rock near Cahill's Crossing on the East Alligator River, there are paintings dating from 20,000 years ago, from figures throwing spears and wearing headdresses to first contact with European settlement. The Gagudju people live in the area between the East and South Alligator Rivers. They share responsibility for Kakadu National Park, which lies within their country. The Jawoyn people live in the South Alligator and South Mary regions as well as around Katherine. The Gunwinggu people live between the Liverpool River and the East Alligator River. Traditional beliefs remain important to the Gunwinggu with Ngalyod, the Rainbow Serpent playing an important part in their art and traditions. Paddy Cahill, who came to the area to set up a cattle station was the first buffalo hunter to operate in the region. The buffalo industry lasted for approximately 70 years until the late 1950s. Crocodile hunting was also operated in the area, until the hunting of freshwater crocodile was made illegal in 1964 and estuarine crocodiles in 1971. Small-scale gold mining started in the region in the 1920s at Imarlkba near Barramundi Creek and at Moline in the 1930s. Following the discovery of large uranium deposits at Jabila, Ranger and Koongarra with royalties paid to the traditional owners in compensation for the loss of their country.

Alligator Rivers Region—contains a number of uranium deposits, including Ranger and Jabila. These deposits are located in the eastern part of the Pine Creek Geosyncline, which extends from Darwin to Pine Creek. The geology of the area is dominated by a variety of sediments and volcanics dating back some 2470 million years. The existing geological formation, which was laid down over millions of years, has been subjected to extensive change, erosion and weathering. The whole Alligator Rivers Region, seaward to the Arnhem Escarpment, contains many areas that have been exposed to elevated levels or uranium and radiation for millions of years. Current ecosystems have evolved naturally in this environment.

Allocasuarina—a major taxon group including shrubs to small trees with pine-like needles and small cones. This genus has just recently been reclassified as separate from the Casuarinas. The threatened northern bettong is sometimes seen in Allocasuarina forest that is bordering rainforest areas in far north-eastern Queensland. Also known as she-oak.

Allosaurus—it has been claimed that foot bones found in Early Cretaceous Australian rocks belong to a species of Allosaurus. However, the fossils are not good enough to claim that they really belong to Allosaurus itself. As Allosaurus is otherwise restricted to the Late Jurassic of western North America, it is more likely that it is a different—and smaller—allosauroid of some sort. However, even this identification is uncertain.

AllosyncarpiaA. ternata, a large, spreading, shady tree that is found only in the Kakadu and Arnhem Land region. This tree grows in a wide range of habitats, including sites near permanent springs, where it forms a distinctive closed-canopy forest with an understorey of rainforest plants, and sites on exposed cliffs and hilltops, where it occurs in open forest and woodland. It is the dominant species of monsoon forests. The leaf-water relations of the Allosyncarpia differ markedly between these contrasting sites, enabling it to grow in a variety of ecosystems. The near-confinement of the species to the Arnhem Land Plateau is in part due to the water-holding capacity of the bedrock.

Allosyncarpia ternata forests—these forests are restricted to the Arnhem Land region of the Northern Territory, which includes Kakadu National Park. They cover an area of 1138sq km, or 41% of all rainforest in northern and north-western Australia. Allosyncarpia forests occupy a range of sandstone-derived substrates, from moist valley sediments to steep, freely draining, rocky sites. It is by far the dominant canopy species over this topographic-moisture sequence, but especially on seasonally dry substrates where it provides over 80% basal area and effectively the entire canopy. Biogeographical implications arising from the Gondwana distributions of Allosyncarpia and its close relatives suggest that taxa ancestral to this group were extensive in the late Cretaceous. Their current restriction is in marked contrast to the success of their near relatives, the eucalypts. Given the tolerance of Allosyncarpia to a wide range of substrate moisture conditions in the present day, it is argued that fire regulates patch margins of this forest type. Although tolerant of light fires, canopy trees at patch margins are susceptible under a regime of frequent, intense late dry-season fires, such as are prevalent in Arnhem Land today.

Allowa—alternate spelling of Alawa.

Allowiri—alternate spelling of Alawa.

Allua—alternate spelling of Alawa.

Allura—alternate spelling of Alura.

almond rocks—(rhyming slang) socks.

Alowa—alternate spelling of Alawa.

ALP—Australian Labor Party.

alphitonia treeAlphitonia excelsa, a fodder plant for both sheep and cattle. Its wood is useful for tool handles, cabinetwork and building purposes, and when first cut is a light colour, gradually darkening at the heart. Alphitonia excelsa is widely distributed in the eucalyptus forests of the Northern Territory and Queensland, and in or near rainforests of the coastal regions from northern Queensland to the south coast of NSW. It has also been identified growing in Brigalow scrub in the interior of NSW. Easily recognised when the young shoots are bruised or broken, as it gives off a peculiar odour similar to sarsaparilla. Also known as the red ash.

alpine ash—1. Eucalyptus delegatensis ssp tasmaniansis, native to Tasmania and the subalpine areas of New South Wales. Alpine ash is a tall, fast-growing tree from the high altitudes of the Australian Alps and the beautiful Snowy River country. The bark is smooth and white on the upper half of the trunk, fibrous, grey to brown on the lower half, and the trunk grows straight. It is ideal for interiors ranging from sophisticated retail spaces to elegant home interiors. Also known as blue leaf, white top, gum-topped stringybark. 2. Eucalyptus delegatensis, a hardwood endemic to the alpine region of Victoria. Because of post-war shortages, the demand for timber was overwhelming. The easily accessible timber was rapidly harvested, which led to further construction and extension of roads into the Alps. Since its peak in the mid-1950s, logging in alpine areas north of Heyfield has steadily declined, with no further timber harvesting planned before the turn of the century. Due to devastating forest fires in August of 2003, a large-scale reseeding program is underway to restore the lost forests that would otherwise be overgrown by scrub. Also known as mountain ash and Victorian ash.

alpine heathlands—found from the mountains to the sea in various forms, usually on shallow, infertile, acidic soils derived from sandstone or granite. Alpine heathlands, herbfields and grasslands occur above the treeline, and similar sub-alpine plant communities may occur as small openings in snow gum woodlands or large plains many hectares in size. These alpine areas of high plains support a surprisingly diverse flora. Many plants are rosette or carpet-formers, in response to a harsh environment where snow lies for months, where gales are frequent and the sunlight intense during summer. Colours and perfumes of alpine flowers are often more striking than their counterparts at lower altitudes. Members of the daisy and sedge families are particularly numerous. The mammal fauna of the alpine environment is distinctive and includes eleven species. Communities of small mammals are characteristic of heathlands, mosslands and sedgelands. Those are the brown antechinus, Swainson’s antechinus, bush rat, mountain pygmy possum (rocky areas) and broad-toothed rat. Sub-alpine open areas have similar populations of herbivores, such as the common wombat and, in summer, the eastern grey kangaroo.

Alpine National Park—646,000ha of protected alpine environment within Victoria. With adjoining national parks in NSW and the ACT, it forms a protected area that covers almost all of Australia's high country. The Alpine National Park contains the state's highest mountains as well as varied alpine environments. Extensive snowfields are the primary winter attraction; the warmer months bring stunning wildflower displays and opportunities for bushwalks and four wheel driving. The 655km Australian Alps Walking Track traverses the Alps from Walhalla to Canberra. Most of the major rivers of south-eastern Australia have their sources there. Amongst the upper reaches of the rivers, trails once used by cattle duffers are now popular horse-riding and bushwalking trails.

ALRA—(see: Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1976 (NT)).

ALRC—Australian Law Reform Commission (1975—present), one of the most effective and influential agents for legal reform in Australia. The ALRC is a permanent, independent, federal statutory corporation that conducts inquiries into areas of law reform, at the request of the Attorney-General. The ALRC's focus is on federal laws and legal processes, and its recommendations provide advice to the federal government. As such, the ALRC is responsible for ensuring that the laws it is reviewing are consistent with Australia's international obligations, and that they uphold both civil liberties and human rights. Established in 1975 and operating under the Australian Law Reform Commission Act 1996 (Cth), the ALRC is accountable to the federal Parliament for its budget and activities.

alternative dispute resolution—(ADR) the settling of commercial disagreements by negotiation and arbitration instead of litigation. ADR has become a specialist field of law practice, largely in response to the high cost and lengthy delays involved in taking disputes to court.

aluminium—British spelling of aluminum.

Alura—an Aboriginal tribe. No information available.

Alyawarr—the traditional country of the Alyawarr lies east of the Stuart Highway and runs from the southern part of the Davenport Ranges in the north to Dulcie Range in the south and from Spring Range in the west to the Ooratippra and Lucy Creeks in the east. Many Alyawarr people live in outstations located on their traditional lands while others live in larger communities, such as Tennant Creek and Mount Isa. The Alyawarr people made their initial contact with Europeans in the period after the construction of the Overland Telegraph in the early 1870s. Some of the earliest contact came as a result of punitive raids against the Alyawarr for their efforts and those of neighbouring peoples (Kaytetje and Waramungu) to restrict European incursions onto their land. Pastoralism and to a lesser extent mining have been major influences on the demographics of the Alyawarr since these times. More recently Alyawarr people have gained title to some of their lands through the purchase of the Utopia pastoral lease (now Aboriginal freehold land), the successful Alyawarr land claim (1979) and through the granting of land associated with stock routes and a small number of pastoral excisions.

Alyurr—the Jawoyn and Gundjeibmi people of Western Arnhem Land call the Leichhardt grasshopper 'Alyurr, children of the Lightning Man' (Namarrgon). Its change into adult colouration signals the start of the Wet season. They are generally seen just before the the Wet, when they come out and call to their father to bring on the Wet season storms. They are of great importance to local Aboriginal people, because they gave them their language, values and structure of their society during the Creation Time. This striking blue and orange grasshopper lives on a particular plant, Pityrodia jamesii, that grows in the stony area of Kakadu.

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