Australian Dictionary

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Australia Decoded

Lord Howe Island Marine Park

Lord Howe Island Marine Park, NSW

load the dice—to fraudulently alter a situation to one's advantage.

loads—plenty of: e.g., There were loads of people at the party.

loaf—1. the head, pertaining to intelligence: e.g., If he used his loaf more often, he wouldn't get into so much strife! 2. an easy, secure, cushy job, position, career.

loan gang—(hist.) a detachment of artisan convicts made available to settlers.

lob—1. arrive: e.g., When did he lob into town? 2. arrive unexpectedly and uninvited: e.g., All the rellies lobbed for the weekend. 3. (cricket) a slow, underarm ball.

lobbie—lobster; yabby; crayfish.

lobster—a twenty-dollar note.

local—1. person who lives in the locality. 2. a preferred and often-visited pub in the local vicinity: e.g., He's down at the local with a few friends.

local option/veto—a system whereby the inhabitants of a district may prohibit the sale of alcoholic liquor there.

lock up the land—shut land off from small settlers.

lock-up—1. a house or room for the temporary detention of prisoners. 2. non-residential premises etc that can be locked up, especially a small shop or storehouse, or a newly-built house before habitation. 3. the unrealisable state of invested capital.

Lockhart River—church influence: Anglican. An Aboriginal community established in 1934, comprising several tribal groups collected from throughout Cape York, which became a centre for the sandalwood trade. The mission was disbanded and the Aboriginals abandoned when the Second World War broke out. In 1947 the mission was re-established, with drastic changes inflicted on how the people should live. In particular, tribal groups were forced to combine into a single community. In 1964, the church handed the mission to the Queensland Government, which tried to relocate the people to Bamaga. Although the people refused this relocation, they were driven from their traditional coastal area. No consideration was given to traditional owners of the land and this move resulted in much discontent and friction. The Lockhart River Community now has DOGIT status, and is governed by its own community council. Aboriginal people of the Kuu Ya’u language group occupied the area now designated as Iron Range National Park, until they were forced onto missions. Their descendants living at the Lockhart River Community retain close ties with their land and cultural heritage.

Lockyer, Major Edmund—was sent from Sydney with his troops to make Britain's claim to Western Australia, in the brig Amity. At King George Sound a military post was created, which is now called Albany. It was a further three years until Captain Fremantle established a colony, on May 2nd 1829, at the mouth of the Swan River. The colonisation was as a result of Captain James Stirling's favourable reports following a journey from Britain in 1826 to determine suitability for settlement.

Lockyer Valley—located in South East Queensland, between Brisbane and the Great Dividing Range. Most areas of the valley are an easy ninety minute drive from Brisbane. Investment in commercial enterprise, both large and small, has made the Lockyer Valley a major contributor to the Queensland economy and Australia as a whole. Many services are provided throughout this fertile region, including irrigated vegetables, manufacturing and tourism, and is the home of some of the best known Horse Breeders in Australia.

Loddon Aborigines—a name first given to the tribes that lived in Tasmania's Loddon Valley and its tributaries, by the early squatters. The tribe are collectively known as the Jajawurrung or Djadja Wurrung people. They covered the central highlands region south to the Great Dividing Range. The 16 Jajawurrung tribes spoke the same dialect, with minor variations. There is evidence that they bartered tachylite for articles not found in their area, the commodity having been found as edge-ground axes right across Australia. Through the ravages of white man's disease, principally smallpox, the Aborigine population fell to between 10,000 to 15,000 by 1830. The Loddon Aborigines' first contact with Europeans is conjecture, but within three years of Major Mitchell's trip, the Jajawurrong land was turned into sheep and cattle country. And so conflict began. A census in April 1864 finds the figure down to 15 males and 8 females. When the Aboriginal Board of Control (established in 1861), transferred the remaining Jajawurrong people to Coranderrik in 1864, the group numbered 10.

lofty—nickname or form of address for a tall or (joc.) extremely short man.

log of wood—lazy, stupid, slow, inefficient person.

Logan, Captain Patrick—of the 57th Regiment arrived in what is now Queensland in 1825. When his regiment relieved the 40th at Moreton Bay, he became Commandant of the penal settlement, arriving at Brisbane Town in March 1826. In August 1826 he discovered the Logan River and rediscovered the Southport bar. In May 1827 he announced his discovery of the Coomera River. His major overland expedition started from Limestone Station (present-day Ipswich) in June 1827, seeking a route to Mt Warning and the Tweed River. In October 1830 he travelled once more up the Brisbane Valley and explored part of the Stanley River. On his way back to Ipswich he became separated from his party overnight, and was chased and killed by Aborigines early the next morning.

loggerhead turtle—the large-headed Caretta caretta, a quiet ocean dweller found within tropical and warm temperate waters from the northern coast of WA along the northern coast of Australia, including the Great Barrier Reef to Fraser Island, Qld. It has a broad diet, and once mature lays about 100 small eggs once a year, usually from October to May.

Logies—Australian annual festival of awards, held for excellence in the television industry.

lollipop lady/man—person in charge of school crossings.

lollop—flop about, move in an ungainly, bounding or lounging manner.

lolly—1. sweet confection. 2. money. 3. head or temper: e.g., Every time I buy a new dress my husband does his lolly! 4. a fool or stupid person.

lolly-water—soft drink; lemonade.

London Missionary Society—a non-denominational body dedicated to spreading the Christian faith around the world. It was founded in 1795, during the evangelical revival, and was largely associated with the Congregationalist movement in England and the United States.

London to a brick—an expression of certainty, credited to the Sydney race-caller Ken Howard. 'Brick' was Australian slang for a £10 note (from its reddish colour). If, towards the end of a race, Howard claimed that the odds of a particular horse winning were London to a brick, he was saying that the horse was at extreme odds-on, with an indisputable chance.

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary—the world's first and largest koala sanctuary. Lone Pine is built into a natural landscape featuring tropical Australian rainforest and bush woodland areas. Here, the koala lives freely in its natural habitat, protected from interference by any form of development. There is also a free-range enclosure for approximately 130 kangaroos and wallabies, as well as separate enclosures for families of wombats, Tasmanian devils, dingos, possums, emus, echidnas and many other Aussie animals.

long blow—a stroke of the shears from the sheep's tail to its neck.

long chance—slim chance; not likely; not a good prospect.

long drink—alcoholic drink served in a tall glass with soft drink mixer.

long drop—execution by hanging.

long figure/price—a heavy cost.

long hop—a short-pitched easily hit ball in cricket.

long leg—(cricket) 1. a fielder far behind the batsman on the leg side. 2. this position.

long off (or on)—(cricket) 1. a fielder far behind the bowler and towards the off (or on) side. 2. hold his position.

long paddock—the territory between the bitumen road and the boundary fence—a grassy no-man's land alongside the roads.

long purple flagPatersonia occidentalis, a frost-hardy plant which can withstand a dry situation. It is a tall, free-flowering species occurring naturally in south-western Australia. As with other Patersonia species it flowers in the spring and carries through to early summer. Colour is blue to purple. Patersonias are erect herbs with short rhizomes, linear leaves and regular, three-petalled flowers in terminal clusters enclosed in two large, papery bracts. Individual flowers open for less than one day but many flowers are produced from the one stem. All plants in a single area will flower on the same day. The fruit is a long, three-celled capsule, triangular in cross section, with abundant seed.

long sighted—far sighted.

long sleever—a large beer.

long tongue—loquacity.

Long Tunnel Extended Gold Mine—(LTEM), one of Walhalla's richest mines. The mine was started as the Hercules United Gold Co in 1863, but when this mine failed, it was taken over by the Long Tunnel Extended Company in 1871. It was simply fate that when the Hercules Mine hit Cohens Reef. When the mine was taken over by the LTEM they turned right at Cohens Reef and hit extensive reserves of gold. A total of 13,695kg of gold was removed before the mine closed in 1911 when the operation became uneconomic. Today you can visit the mine and see the original workings deep underground.

long yamDioscorea transversa, a climbing plant that produces new climbing stems each wet season, and survives the dry season as an underground yam. It is found in monsoon vine forest and thickets across northern Australia. The yam can grow up to 1m long and 15cm in diameter. The flesh is almost white and very tasty, very much like a sweet potato. It can be eaten raw or roasted in a ground oven, which is the traditional way of eating it. The yams are usually dug up after the wet season growing period when they are fat and at their sweetest. Generally, the neck is broken and they are replanted so that the yam resource wouldn't diminish. In the past, this yam and several others formed a critical part of the traditional diet of many north Australian Aboriginal groups.

long-distance call on the big white telephone—to vomit in the toilet bowl.

long-footed potorooPotorous longpipes is a small kangaroo, about the size of a rabbit, covered in dense, soft, grey-brown fur which is paler on the stomach and feet. This species is distinguished from other potoroos by its long back feet with long toes, and strong front feet and claws. It is so rare and shy that it was unknown to biologists before 1980. It is found only in three isolated regions in the Great Dividing Range in north-east Victoria and south-east New South Wales. Its most important requirements are a type of forest fungus which it eats, and dense cover to provide shelter.

long-grassing it—derived from: hiding in the long grass, as is typical of sheep or cattle—not being able to be seen because the grass (corn, maize, or any other tall plant) is tall enough to completely hide them. Ergo, coming out of the long grass (long-grassing it) with sufficient explanation to make it believable or at least plausible. In the negative—(one) won't be attempting a cover-up, or putting (something) in the too hard basket or sitting on it till everyone has forgotten about it. Similar meaning to 'coming out of the woodwork', or 'hiding in the woodwork/ woodpile'.

long-haired ratRattus villosissimus, so named for the long, black guard hairs on the back, this rat is otherwise pale grey-brown. Ears and tail are dark grey, with the latter shorter than the head and body. The species has been recorded over vast areas of New South Wales>. Strongholds are north-west of NSW, with plagues originating from this region and spilling south along river channels. Otherwise, the species are found in scattered localities in low numbers. Eats roots, stems and leaves of grasses and herbs, especially the more succulent species. Seeds, flowers and insects (e.g. locust) which become available in better seasons stimulate reproduction. Sustained in mesic, densely vegetated sites. During plagues can be found in virtually all inland habitats. Following extended periods of above average rainfall or flood this species can breed rapidly. Resulting populations disperse widely, then die away abruptly as food is depleted and water evaporates. Predators rely on these rat plagues for their own rapid reproduction. Nocturnal, sheltering during the day in complex burrow systems or in a shallow temporary burrow.

long-headed—shrewd, far-seeing, sagacious.

long-leaved paperbarkMelaleuca leucadendra var. angustifolia, a melaleuca which occurs in northern Australia, Papua New Guinea and eastern Indonesia. In Australia it is found near the coast of tropical Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia, but also extends inland up to 350km along major rivers. On favourable sites it is a tall, fast-growing tree, 25m—40m, with a straight stem up to 1.5m diameter. The bark is white, layered and papery. Its long, slender branchlets often droop, giving the crown a weeping appearance. The plant is hairless except on very young shoots. White or creamy small flowers occur on spikes, 6cm—15cm long and 2cm—3cm wide. Flowering occurs mainly May—September. Fruits are stalkless, thin-walled, cylindrical capsules about 4 mm long. There are about 1.8 million viable seeds per kilogram and they germinate readily in wet conditions. Most stands occur in gentle topography, especially river flats, coastal plains and seasonal swamps. Soils are silty-loamy clays or sandy loams over clay. They may be very acidic, or have saline groundwater close to the sea. The largest trees occur in tall open forest adjacent to rainforest or along riverbanks. It commonly occurs in almost pure stands but may be associated with species such as black wattle, red gum, Leichhardt tree and red beech. Melaleuca leucadendra was named by the Swedish botanist Linnaeus in 1767. The genus name comes from the Greek melas = black, and leos = white; its origin is obscure, but may refer to the black trunk and white branches of some species. Also known as broad-leafed tea tree.

long-nosed bandicootPerameles nasuta, weighs 850-1100 grams. The sleek-appearing pelage is composed chiefly of coarse, distinct hairs. The upper parts may be drab, light brown with a slight pinkish tinge, dull orange, yellowish brown, grayish brown, or gray. Black or black-tipped hairs are often interspersed with lighter ones. The underparts are white or whitish. These bandicoots have long, tapered snouts and conspicuous pointed ears. Distribution is in the eastern parts of Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. Habitats include rainforest and sclerophyll forest. Long-nosed bandicoots are nocturnal, terrestrial and highly active. Their rapid running has been described as kind of gallop, and they have been seen to jump straight up into the air and then to take off immediately in another direction.
The members of this genus are largely insectivorous, though they also feed on worms, snails, lizards, mice, and plant material.

long-nosed potorooPotorous tridactylus, a tiny kangaroo just 20cm tall, it is Australia's most ancient real kangaroo. It is the same shape now as it was 10 million years ago, when all kangaroos were small. Its habitat is usually coastal heath or wet eucalypt forest, in areas with relatively thick ground cover, from which it rarely ventures. Feeding begins at dusk, with a diet of roots, tubers, fungi, insects and their larvae. Breeding seasons are biannual. One young is reared, spending around four months in the pouch.


long-uns—long trousers.

Longreach—prior to 1860, the land around what is now the Shire of Longreach was peopled by the Iningai, Malintji and Kunngkari. In 1863 a pastoral lease was granted to the partnership of the Scottish Australia Company, William Landsborough, Nat Buchanan and Edward Cornish. This lease, named 'Bowen Downs', covered an area of approximately 2000 square miles and was eventually stocked with about 350,000 sheep and 35,000 cattle. Longreach holds numerous claims to fame. It was the base for the Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Service (otherwise known as Qantas), and it is now famous for its Stockmans Hall of Fame and Outback Heritage Centre, which features displays on life in the outback and pioneers of the past.

Lonsdale, Captain—the first police magistrate of the newly declared colony of Port Phillip. In 1836, the title of Resident Magistrate of the District of Port Phillip was conferred on Captain Lonsdale. Dispatched from Sydney by Sir Richard Bourke, Governor of New South Wales, Lonsdale was accompanied by a party of soldiers and civil servants—Henry Batman, brother of the more famous John Batman, the founder of the settlement, was appointed District Constable on 11th January 1837 and later in the year to the rank of Chief Constable.

loo—lavatory; toilet.

look a treat—have an appealing appearance.

look after the cents and the dollars will look after themselves—being careful with every small amount of money, being of thrifty habit must automatically ensure that (one) will always have sufficient funds.

look alive—hurry up; speed up.

look like (one) has been chasing parked cars—to appear beaten up, bloodied—especially of the face.

look sharp!—be quick! hurry up!

look-in—chance of success: e.g., He was so good at tennis that I didn't even get a look-in when we played.

look-see—a good look: e.g., Come and have a look-see at this!

looker—very attractive person, especially a woman.

looks good from Footscray/the Western Suburbs—expression of contempt, indicating that the only way someone could look good is from a long distance away, from the bottom of the pile.

looks like a madwoman's breakfast/knitting/washing—in total confusion; messed up; muddled; in disarray.

looks like a rat looking over a straw broom—pertaining to a man with a beard.

looks like two ferrets fighting in a sack—pertaining to a fat woman with an opulent backside.

loopy about (someone)—extremely fond of, in love with (someone).

loppy-lugs—lop-eared; having ears that hang down, as on a rabbit.

Lord Howe Island—the remnants of a large shield volcano that erupted from the sea floor about seven million years ago. Two-thirds of the island is covered in forests, including giant Banyan trees and Kentia palms. Two volcanic mountains—Mount Lidgbird to the north and Mount Gower to the south—dominate the island. Mount Gower rises to 875m from the sea, with black cliffs of basalt and steeply forested slopes. The northern part of the island is a series of low hills that slope gently up from the west to a height of about 200m. On the east side they drop into the sea as sheer cliffs. Several low-lying areas between the hills in the north and the mountains in the south have been partially cleared for settlement. European discovery of Lord Howe Island occurred when the island was sighted in 1788 from the British colonial naval vessel HMS Supply, en route from Sydney to the penal colony on Norfolk Island. The first landing was made two months later on the return voyage to Sydney. The settlers made a living by hunting, fishing and growing vegetables and fruit—food for trade with passing whaling ships.

Lord Howe Island Group—the erosional remnant of a 6.9 million-year old shield volcano on the western edge of the Lord Howe Rise. The group is part of a series of volcanic pinnacles that lie on the submarine ridge, which runs from the North Island of New Zealand. Over time the sea eroded 90 per cent of the original volcano, leaving the islands that today comprise the Lord Howe Island group. The pinnacles include Balls Pyramid, Gower Island, Sugarloaf Island, Mutton Bird Island, Blackburn (Rabbit) Island, and the Admiralty Island Group. The region is home to over 500 species of fish and 90 species of coral. There are over 130 species of birds, with bird breeding colonies including the red-tailed tropical bird, sooty tern, noddy tern, Providence petrel and the masked booby. It is also home to the rare and endangered woodhen. Located 700km north-east of Sydney in the South Pacific Ocean, the island group covers an area of 136, 300ha.

Lord Howe Island Marine Park—a part of the state of New South Wales. The park is surrounded by state waters (out to 3 nautical miles) and Commonwealth waters out to a distance of 200 nautical miles. The perimeter of the Lord Howe Island Marine Park (Commonwealth waters) roughly corresponds to the 1800m depth contour that follows the base of the seamounts that underlie the island and Balls Pyramid. The sea area of the park is estimated to be 300,510ha and includes the sea-bed to a depth of 100m. It includes the entire Lord Howe seamount system and its biologically diverse ecosystems. The Lord Howe Island Marine Park was declared on 26 February 1999. Located in the South Pacific Ocean, 630km off the north coast of New South Wales and 700km north-east of Sydney, directly east of Port Macquarie.

Lord Howe Rise—a volcanic undersea ridge 160km—300km wide and 18km—29km thick, separating the Tasman Basin from the New Caledonian Basin. The Lord Howe Rise is made of continental crust that was rafted eastward as volcanism at a mid-ocean ridge formed new seafloor and opened the Tasman Basin.

Lord Howe World Heritage Area—comprises approximately 75% of the land area of Lord Howe Island and all of the offshore islands and rocks of significant size in the region, include the Admiralty Group, Mutton Bird and Sail Rock islands, Blackburn (Rabbit) Island, Gower Island and Ball's Pyramid, together with a number of small islands and rocks. The coral reef on the western side of the island is the southernmost occurrence of coral reef in the world, providing a rare example of the transition between coral and algal reefs. The waters surrounding Lord Howe Island provide an unusual mixture of temperate and tropical organisms, and the marine environment is internationally significant. Lord Howe Island and its surrounding waters were declared a World Heritage site on December 1982, and the Lord Howe Island Marine Park was declared on 26 February 1999. Located in the South Pacific Ocean, 630km off the north coast of New South Wales and 700km north-east of Sydney, directly east of Port Macquarie.

lord, love a duck!—an expression of surprise, astonishment, disbelief, scorn etc.

Lord Mayor—official title of the mayor of a city.

Lord Muck—man full of affectation, one who puts on airs and graces or who has an unjustifiably high opinion of himself.

lord of the manor—1. (joc.) the owner of a residence; the man of the house. 2. man (or boy) who constantly attempts to evade household chores.

lord of the roost—the man of the house, such as the father, husband.

lorikeet—usage of the terms 'lory' and 'lorikeet' is subjective, like the usage of 'parrot' and 'parakeet'. Species with longer tapering tails are generally referred to as 'lorikeets', while species with short blunt tails are generally referred to as 'lories'. they are currently classified as a tribe. Neither traditional view is confirmed by molecular studies. Those studies show that the lories and lorikeets form a single group, closely related to the budgerigar and the fig parrots (Cyclopsitta and Psittaculirostris). They have specialized brush-tipped tongues for feeding on nectar and soft fruits. They can feed from the flowers of about 5,000 species of plants and use their specialised tongues to take the nectar. The tip of their tongues have tufts of papillae (extremely fine hairs), which collect nectar and pollen. Lorikeets have tapered wings and pointed tails that allow them to fly easily and display great agility. They also have strong feet and legs. They tend to be hyperactive and clownish in personality both in captivity and the wild. The multi-coloured rainbow lorikeet was one of the species of parrots appearing in the first edition of The Parrots of the World and also in John Gould's lithographs of the Birds of Australia. They are widely distributed throughout the Australasian region, including south-eastern Asia, Polynesia, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste and Australia, and the majority have very brightly coloured plumage.

Lorne—a fashionable seaside resort facing the Southern Ocean, along the Great Ocean Road. The town is situated on the Erskine River, with the eucalypt-clad slopes of the Otway Ranges as backdrop. The original settler was a timber-cutter, the first of many who were attracted by the vast timber reserves of the Otways. The timber was relayed to Geelong and Melbourne via oceangoing craft, which beached on the coastline at Lorne. By the 1890s, Lorne had become one of the most popular coastal holiday and health resorts in Victoria. In 1891 the town was visited by Rudyard Kipling, who was inspired to write the poem 'Flowers'.

lorry—1. truck. 2. a long, flat low wagon. 3. a truck used on railways and tramways.

lory—(see: lorikeet).

lose a packet—lose a large amount of money, especially in a wager or gamble.

lose (one's) block—become very angry.

lose (one's) dibs—become silly, crazy, insane.

lose (one's) scalp—get into serious trouble; get a severe scolding.

lose (one's) wool—lose (one's) temper.

Lost City—these complex, freestanding sandstone block and pillar formations suggest the ruins of a long forgotten civilisation. The track into this section is extremely rocky and rough. Only people experienced in handling 4WD vehicles should attempt the journey to the Lost City. Located in Litchfield National Park, Northern Territory.

Lost Generation—refers to those Aboriginal children who were taken from their parents for the purpose of integrating them into the Western lifestyle—part of the White Australia policy in place into the 1970s. Although as much of a wrenching loss for the parents as it was a blow to Aboriginal culture, the current movement for Aboriginal rights is being led by precisely that generation. The Western education that was provided has armed them to lead their people in their legal battle for equal justice within the system and the restoration of ancestral lands.

lot—a type of person or group of people: e.g., He's a bad lot!

lotus eater—idle, lazy, forgetful person.

lotus bird—(see comb-crested jacana).

lounge room—the living room in a house.

lousy as a bandicoot—miserly; parsimonious; stingy; mean.

lousy sod—contemptible or stingy person.

love me, love my dog—a declaration that others must accept without reservation something that is dear to one (such as a dog, cat, foible etc).

low as shark shit—despicable; contemptible.

low open forest—occur along the drier margins of the tall open forest, and are extremely widespread in Australia. They include the southern woodlands, the tropical savannahs of the north, as well as the mallee communities. As the name suggests, low open forest is shorter than tall open forest. It is also typically more open in the crown and the understory is sparse, with sclerophyllous shrubs (particularly in the south) and grass (especially in the north) prominent. Fire is an important factor in the dynamics of the low open forest for much the same reasons as in tall open forest. The active fire regime (annual in many cases) and gluttony of termites reduce the litter layer, which provides fuel for fires and protection of the soil from desiccation and erosion. Savannah is typically open with a tree layer, but few trees. There is a tendency for shrub invasion of the savannahs under current management regimes. Savannah trees are of variable type—there are many eucalypts but others with rainforest affinities. The strongly seasonal climate of northern Australia encourages deciduousness in some of the eucalypts and many of the dry rainforest interlopers. Elevation imposes considerable influence on the woody vegetation. There is a distinct altitudinal zonation in the south (in the north the higher areas are rainforested). Species changes occur—the treeline on the mainland is formed by sub-species of snow gum; below them occur mountain gum, narrow-leaved peppermint and broad-leaved peppermint. Swampy areas with cold air drainage often support black sallee. The understory is increasingly grassy and eventually trees give way to grasslands and herbfields. In Tasmania different species of eucalypts (such as Alpine cider gum, urn gum and Alpine snow gum) fill the role of treeline species. At the driest extremes of eucalypt tolerance eucalypts become stunted and increasingly adopt the mallee growth habit. Mallee communities were once widespread in southern Australia but have been extensively cleared for marginal farm land. Mallee communities exhibit an understory with affinities to the "desert" but some areas with particularly poor soils look more like heathlands. Non-eucalypt woodlands occur, in general, in areas too dry for eucalypts. The most widespread community is mulga, which is one of the major arid zone rangeland communities. Regeneration of mulga is a sporadic affair depending on an unlikely combination of high rainfall years to allow flowering and seed set, germination and survival of the seedlings. Grazing (especially by rabbits) and low frequency, high intensity fires have put the mulga woodlands under considerable pressure. Many are degraded and their future is dubious. A second important group of Acacia woodlands is made up of communities found primarily on heavy-textured, cracking clay soil. These include the brigalow, gidgee, Acacia georginae, blackwood and myall. All are able to tolerate poor drainage and are considered prime indicators of land suitable for "improvement". Between the Acacia-dominated and eucalypt-dominated communities of eastern Australia is a discontinuous swathe of cypress pine woodlands. These woodlands are usually found on sandy soils and are unusual in being coniferous (they are related to the northern cypress) and very fire sensitive. Survival in a fire-prone environment depends on fire exclusion, rather than tolerance—a similar strategy is adopted by Allocasuarina communities found in the same areas. Grass fuel in both communities is suppressed by the dominant trees and it requires a severe fire to get into the community. If it does, disaster ensues and regeneration depends on seedling recruitment from cones held in the canopy. Sadly, both groups of trees are palatable to rabbits, goats etc and regeneration is less than assured following a fire.

Lower Glenelg National Park—27,300ha situated in the south-western corner of Victoria. The Glenelg River is the central feature. Along the last part of its winding 400 kilometre path to the sea, the river has carved a spectacular gorge up to 50m deep through limestone. River erosion and the action of rainwater have created some remarkable caves. The geological characteristics were formed millions of years ago when sea creatures, deposited on the ocean floor, compacted into limestone. Eons later the water receded, exposing the seabed. Water, percolating through and dissolving the limestone, formed the caves. Aboriginal people lived in the area for many thousands of years and had an intimate knowledge of its geography, flora and fauna, all of which had great spiritual significance. They suffered greatly from the effects of European settlement, but their descendants are now involved in park management and in recovering their heritage. European settlement began in the 1830s but fortunately large areas remained uncleared. Today these are mostly protected in the national park. Platypus and water rats burrow into the river banks. Reed beds along quieter stretches shelter ducks and moorhens. Azure kingfishers and herons fish in the shallows. Emus, eastern grey kangaroos and red-necked wallabies are common, as are brush-tailed possums, koalas and echidnas. The park also has small colonies of wombats and yellow-bellied gliders. In terms of plant life, the park is where east meets west. Gullies at Moleside Creek contain the most westerly tree ferns in Australia and at least 60 other plant species which are found no further west. At the same time many West Australian plants occur here—the edge of their eastern range—so that a total of 700 species, including 50 orchids, can be found in and around forest, heath, swamp and river.

Lower House—in parliamentary systems with more than one house of parliament, the one nearer to the electorate, by virtue of more frequent elections, more representatives, or a wider franchise. In Queensland and the territories, there is only one house of parliament. In most states, the lower house is the Legislative Assembly or House of Assembly; federally, it is the House of Representatives.

lowie—a despicable, contemptible person.

lowland grassland—vegetation dominated by native grass in the tallest layer and less than 600m above sea level. Native grasslands have few or no trees. The lowland tussock grasslands have been heavily cleared and today only small patches remain in places like country cemeteries and road reserves. Lowland grasslands are of two types: lowland silver tussock grassland or kangaroo grass tussock grassland, both of which are endangered. Lowland silver tussock grassland is generally found on alluvial river flats less than 600m above sea level. It also occurs in coastal areas on sand ridges or next to wetlands, where it is usually the result of excessive burning of shrubby coastal vegetation. Many farmers value these river flat grasslands for the shelter they provide newly shorn sheep or lambs. They are also important for erosion control during floods.

Lowlands of Kakadu—the greater part of Kakadu is covered by eucalypt-dominated open forest and woodland. These tracts are among the last expanses of virgin eucalypt forest in Australia. The lowland plants are heavily influenced by seasonal factors. The wet season is a period of growth, when plants make the most of the abundant water. Open forest is dominated by the Darwin stringybark, Darwin woollybutt and Cooktown ironwood. Woodlands contain many types of eucalypts, including bloodwoods and boxes. The understorey of both open forest and woodland is generally made up of smaller trees such as pandanus and green plums, shrubs, and tall grasses such as spear grass. The greatest species diversity occurs, however, in the ground layer, where there is a large range of grasses, sedges and wildflowers.

luck of the Irish—ridiculously good luck or fortune that seems to go against all odds.

Lucky Country—pertaining to Australia—coined from a book of the same name by Donald Horne.

lucky dip—a chance or undertaking for which the outcome is uncertain.

lug—1. the ear. 2. fool; idiot; dunce; incompetent person.

lulu—person or thing of outstanding quality or excellence; first-rate; amazing.

lumbered with—to have foisted or palmed off upon oneself something or someone unpleasant or distasteful.

Lumholtz, Carl Sophus—(1851—1922) a Norwegian naturalist, ethnologist and explorer, who worked in south and north-eastern Australia from 1880 to 1884. He was sent to collect new mammal specimens for the zoological and zootomical museums of the University of Christiania. He was also interested in studying the customs and anthropology of the Aboriginal populations. Lumholtz enlisted the help of some Aboriginal hunters to collect specimens, and in 1882 they told him of an unusual animal species that lived high up in the trees of the coastal mountains, which turned out to be what is now known as Lumholtz’s tree kangaroo. Lumholtz went on to discover three other previously unknown species of mammals. The Lumholtz National Park in Queensland was named in his honour. It took Lumholtz and local hunter Nilgora three months to find the first of these animals. The Lumholtz’s tree kangaroo is the smallest of the two species found in Australia and is now endangered. His book, Among Cannibals, which was published in 1889, describes his Australian experiences.

Lumholz tree kangarooDendrolagus lumholtzi, the smallest of all tree kangaroos, adults weighing just over half as much as Bennett's tree kangaroo. Their movement is unusual for macropods in that they walk rather than hop. Blackish- brown, sprinkled with lighter coloured fur on the lower part of their back. Lighter coloured band across forehead and down each side of the face. Long forearms which are heavily muscled and hind feet which are short and broad. Tail is long with the terminal half blackish brown, used for counterbalance in climbing. Common in distribution. It is a nocturnal animal, thus, its days are spent asleep in a crouched sitting posture in the crown of a tree or branch. It occupies upland forests between Ingham and the Carbine Tableland, where the territory of Bennett's tree-kangaroo takes over. The Lumholtz tree kangaroo is predominantly a leaf eater, known to feed on the leaves of the silkwood as well as fruit and maize from farms on the rainforest edge. Although densities may approach 1 per hectare in some places, these animals are essentially solitary, males fighting to the death if enclosed together. They are highly territorial animals that are reluctant to abandon their home ranges, even following a severe disturbance. They mostly live a sedentary life. Males occasionally move between forest blocks, possibly following antagonistic encounters with other males, but females rarely move from their home patch. This has been reinforced by recent genetic test results conducted on the animals which show that the female tree-kangaroos are all related to either of two original 'founder' females. Named after the Norwegian naturalist C. Lumholtz, it is also known as the boongary.

lummox—stupid, clumsy, foolish or incompetent person.

lunette—a crescent-shaped, beach and dune complex found on the eastern sides of lakes in arid Australia. Usually composed of quartz sand but can also be partly or wholly composed of sand-sized clay pellets, or gypsum sand. Many important finds of Aboriginal pre-history have been made in lunettes.

lung lolly—cigarette.

lurgi/lurgy—an illness such as a cold or the flu.

lurk—1. a good scheme, thing, strategy that offers a short-cut to success. 2. a job, vocation, profession. 3. an unethical or moderately underhanded scheme, strategy.

lurk-man—a confidence man.

lurks and perks—pertaining to schemes (often unethical) and resulting benefits, profits etc: e.g., He knows all the lurks and perks of the gambling industry.

lychees—indigenous to China and South-East Asia, lychees have been cultivated in China since 1766 BC. They were introduced to Australia by Chinese gold miners in the 1880s and since then have become a key crop for farmers between northern Queensland and Byron Bay.

lyctid borer—a major timber pest. The larvae of this insect feed on starch in the sapwood of some hardwoods and in doing so leave tunnels packed with fine powdery dust or frass. The mature larvae pupate and emerge as adult beetles leaving holes 1-2 mm in diameter in the timber surface or in sheeting materials covering affected timber. These holes are usually the first sign of lyctid attack in buildings or furniture and are often noticed as a result of powdery frass falling from them. This insect will only attack the susceptible sapwood of certain hardwoods and emerging adults may tunnel through the heartwood. Attack may continue until all susceptible sapwood is effectively destroyed. This insect will not attack softwoods. Also known as the powder post beetle.

Lyndon-Minilya Rivers Basin—covers an area of 46,570sq km in the mid-west region of Western Australia. It extends about 200km inland into semi-arid areas. Average annual rainfall is generally between 200mm to 300mm throughout the basin. The Lyndon and Minilya rivers are the two largest river systems with an interconnecting array of small intermittent creeks, pools and inland lake systems. Floodplains are generally wide, flat and sediment-filled, and flow only following seasonal rainfall or cyclone activity. Closer to the coast the major creeks and rivers discharge into Lake MacLeod before discharging into the ocean. Numerous other small, tidal creeks near Exmouth discharge directly to the ocean. Although there has been little land clearing for agriculture, overgrazing by livestock has contributed to loss of native vegetation and exacerbated erosion problems in areas.

lyrebird—a spectacular bird of the genus Menura, consisting of just two species: the superb lyrebird and Albert’s lyrebird. Mixed in with their own calls, clicks and songs, they mimic any loud, clear sound made by other birds and mammals – including humans. They have been heard to mimic the sounds of chainsaws, horns, alarms and even trains. Lyrebirds also sing throughout the year, not restricting themselves to mating times only. Lyrebirds are timid; when threatened, they escape by running and dodging rapidly through the undergrowth while emitting high-pitched shrieks of alarm. With their short, round, weakly muscled wings they rarely fly. However, their wings allow them to jump onto tree branches or rocks and then glide back down to the forest floor. Lyrebirds feed mainly on ground-dwelling insects, spiders, frogs, and other small invertebrates that they find by scratching among the leaf litter. They have powerful legs with long toes and claws, which are ideal for raking over dead leaves and soil. The female builds a dome-shaped nest of sticks, which can be on the ground, on rocks, within tree stumps, or in tree ferns and caves. The nest is lined with ferns, feathers, moss and rootlets. Usually, only one egg is laid, which hatches in around six weeks. The young lyrebird remains in the nest for six to ten weeks.

lyssavirus—a newly recognised viral infection of Australian bats (flying foxes), first identified in 1996. The genus Lyssavirus falls within the family Rhabdovirus. There are six genotypes recognised within the genus. These are rabies virus, Lagos bat virus, Mokola virus, Duvenhage virus and the European bat lyssaviruses (1 and 2). This virus is genetically distinct from the previously known lyssaviruses, and can be fatal to humans.

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