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Australia Decoded

Noisy Friar Bird

Noisy Friar Bird (Philemon corniculatus)

no ball—1. no; absolutely not. 2. (cricket) illegal delivery.

no better than she should be—morally suspect; sexually promiscuous.

no bloody fear!—absolutely not! emphatically no!

no brain, no pain—(joc.) statement of consolation to someone who has injured or hurt himself, especially on the head.

no flies on (someone)—(someone) is smart, clever, alert, shrewd, informed.

no go—emphatically no; not successful; a refusal, denial; cancelled.

no good to gundy—no good at all.

no hoper—a useless person.

no oil painting—not endowed with beauty; ugly: e.g., I may not be a nubile beauty but you're no oil painting either!

no prob!—no problems! no worries!

no risk!—exclamation of assurance: e.g., We can do that—no risk!

no room to swing a cat—pertaining to extremely cramped quarters: e.g., I'd hate to live in his house—there's no room to swing a cat! Origin: For 80 years, convict ships followed in the wake of explorer-navigators. Discipline meant a flogging with the cat-o'-nine-tails (a 'cat'), administered on deck because below decks, there was not enough room to swing a cat.

no shortage of oscar—to have plenty of money.

no show—no chance of success: e.g., He's got no show of getting that job.

no troubs!—an expression of assurance; no trouble! no problem!

no use shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted—it is too late to do, after an error or mishap has occurred, what one should have done in the first place to prevent the mishap from occurring.

no worries!—an expression of assurance; no problem!: e.g., You can borrow the car—no worries!

no-ball—(cricket) an unlawfully delivered ball (counting one to the batting side if not otherwise scored from).

no-disadvantage test—1) a test that is applied by the Employment Advocate to ensure that, when considered as a whole, the Australian Workplace Agreement (AWA) is no less favourable to the employee than the relevant award, and any other law the Employment Advocate considers relevant. 2) a test that is applied by the Australian Industrial Relations Commission (AIRC) to ensure that, when considered as a whole, the certified agreement (CA) is no less favourable to the employees than the relevant award(s) and laws.

no-hoper—1. incompetent person or animal. 2. social outcast; person who does not meet socially acceptable standards of dress and behaviour, is unable to hold a job etc.

Noah/Noah's ark—(rhyming slang) shark.

nob—1. the head. 2. person of wealth, importance or high social standing.

nobble—1. to tamper illegally with a race-horse, such as by drugging. 2. to obtain dishonestly; swindle; cheat. 3. to capture; seize; grab; arrest. 4. to delegate a task to someone unwilling to do it: e.g., I got nobbled with the late shift on New Year's Eve.

nobby—first-class; elegant; plush.

nod is as good as a wink to a blind man—in the circumstances, the difference does not matter.

noddy—fool; dunce; stupid, silly person.

noddy ternAnous minutus, although most of the world's terns are white or pale gray or both, there are dark brown or blackish colored species, best known of which are the three species of "noddy terns" (genus Anous) that forage offshore in tropical oceans. Heron Island on the Great Barrier Reef is renowned for its abundance of bird life, with dense pisonia forests which are home to about 100,000 noddy terns.

nog/noggy—(see: nig-nog).

noggin—1. the head. 2. a drink.

noise off—speak loudly, brashly.

noisy friar birdPhilemon corniculatus, a large member of the honeyeater family, with a distinctive, naked black head and a strong bill with a prominent casque (bump) at the base. The upper parts are dark brown to grey, the underbody is off-white, with silver-white feathers around the throat and upper breast, and the tail has a white tip. It is a noisy and conspicuous bird mainly seen in small groups, usually up in trees. The noisy friarbird differs from other friarbirds by having a completely bare black head and upper neck. It is found in eastern and south-eastern Australia, from north-eastern Queensland to north-eastern Victoria. It is also found in southern New Guinea. The noisy friarbird prefers dry forests and eucalypt woodlands, as well as coastal scrub, heathlands and around wetlands and wet forests, and is found in most climate zones, extending into arid areas along rivers. It is a partial migrant in the south of its range, moving north in autumn and south in late winter. The noisy friar bird eats nectar, fruit, insects and other invertebrates and, sometimes, eggs or baby birds. They spend most of their time feeding on nectar high up in trees, only coming down to the ground occasionally to feed on insects. They often feed in noisy flocks, along with other honeyeaters, such as the red wattlebird. Noddy terns form long-term pairs, with both parents defending the nest and surrounds. The female builds the large, deep, cup-shaped nest from bark and grass, bound with spider webs, slinging it in a tree-fork. She alone incubates the eggs, but both parents feed the young up to three weeks after fledging.

noisy minerManorina melanocephala, a bold and curious bird of moderate size (28cm). A call of alarm given by any one is noisily joined by all others in the flock. They are noted for their aggressive attacks on even quite large birds, and will successfully exclude most other birds from their area. It is identified by its mostly grey body and black crown and cheeks. The bill is yellow, as are the legs and the naked skin behind the eye. Noisy miners are found in woodlands and open forests from northern Queensland along the eastern coast to South Australia and Tasmania. They have also adapted to suburban situations and are a common sight in parks and gardens. They are honeyeaters, and feed on nectar, fruits and insects. In keeping with its highly social nature, the noisy miner usually feeds in large groups, and they breed in colonies. The season extends from July to December and several broods may be reared in this time.

noisy pittaPitta versicolor, a common rainforest bird that is known for its jewel-like plumage. It has a loud, tuneful whistle resembling the sound walk-to-work; the first note is low in pitch and the last is higher and slightly drawn out, and is usually repeated twice. At night particularly, the noisy pitta will also give a single, mournful keow. The noisy pitta has an upright posture, characteristically flicking its tail and bobbing its head as it forages for food. If approached, it will turn its back and crouch slightly, peering back over its shoulder as it cocks its tail and spreads its wings. It forages for food on the forest floor and eats insects, woodlice, worms, snails and other small animals, as well as berries and fruit. Snails are held in the pitta's beak and struck repeatedly against a stone until the shell is broken. Lives in rainforests on the eastern coast of Australia, from the top of Cape York Peninsula in Queensland down to the northern regions of Victoria. It is called the Devil-Devil bird by Aboriginal people, who believe the noisy pitta lures their children into the rainforest to steal them.

noisy scrub birdAtrichornis clamosus, a 21cm-long bird, of which 10cm is tail. Endemic to Australia, it is a feeble flier, preferring to run through the undergrowth. Its diet consists of large insects, such as crickets and cockroaches. Adult males have well-established territories. Egg laying takes place from late May to early September; only one egg is laid per season. The species is named after the variety of loud, piercing whistles and trills made, many mimicking other species. The noisy scrub bird once inhabited dense scrub and low forest on steep and damp gullies through coastal heathland on granite headlands in south-west Western Australia. However, by the 1960s its range had retreated to the Mount Gardener area of the Two Peoples Bay Nature Reserve 40km east of Albany. As a result of habitat management and translocation of birds to new sites, the range has expanded to some 30km of coastal and near coastal land. By 1993 the population of singing males was estimated at 400 individuals; a substantial increase from the 40 estimated in the 1960s. The decline of this species has been attributed to the frequent fires lit by European settlers to clear land, thus reducing the species' invertebrate food supply. The land around Mount Gardener, with its resident scrub bird population, had previously been protected from fire by its rough terrain. Rediscovered in 1961, it had not been sighted since 1899 and was presumed extinct. There are two scrub bird species, the other being the threatened rufous scrub bird.

non compos—1. unconscious or completely incapable due to alcohol or drugs. 2. mentally incapable. 3. in a dazed and confused state of mind.

non-event—a failure, fiasco.

non-Pama-Nguungan language group—all Aboriginal languages can be classified as either Pama-Nyungan or non-Pama-Nyungan. The Pama-Nyungan group covers nine-tenths of the continent. The non-Pama-Nyungan group exists in a relatively small area in northern Australia and is made up of some twenty distinct language families. In the Kimberley area alone there are some four separate families, each made up of several languages.

nonce-word—a word coined for one occasion.

nondaParinari nonda, a shrub or small tree in the family Chrysobalanaceae, of northern Queensland and the Northern Territory, often found growing in groves on sand ridges The astringent, edible, yellow fruit are harvested in the wild. Also known as nonda plum, nonda tree, nunda plum and parinari.

nong—fool; idiot; simpleton; silly person.

nonpariels—hundreds and thousands; sprinkles.

noogoora burrXanthium occidentale family Asteraceaean, an introduced herb (native to North America). Spread by seed in burrs attached to animals, clothing and bags. Burrs float and are moved by water. Noogoora Burr is often abundant after spring or summer floods. Impedes shearing and is a major cause of vegetable fault in wool. Young plants are more toxic than mature plants; sheep, cattle and pigs are affected; poisoning seldom occurs unless stock are starving. Can cause contact dermatitis in humans and animals. Insects and pathogens, some deliberately introduced, damage Noogoora Burr in Australia.

Noongar—an Aboriginal people in the south-west of Western Australia. The land of the Noongar nation stretches from approximately Geraldton/Moora on the west coast to Esperance on the south coast.

Norfolk—the colonial sloop commanded by Matthew Flinders on his journey to Van Diemen's Land with George Bass in 1798-1799. On this, their most important joint expedition, Bass and Flinders confirmed that Tasmania is an island separated from the mainland by a strait, circumnavigating the island in an anti-clockwise direction. This successful voyage added to the reputations of both men and assisted ships from England, as they could then sail through the strait instead of adding time by having to pass south of Tasmania. The achievements of Bass and Flinders aboard the Norfolk helped the later efforts of the British to claim and settle Van Diemen’s Land.

Norfolk Bay convict station—the terminus of Australia's first railway station, linking ships from Hobart with the penal settlement of Port Arthur. Goods were transported to a jetty built in front of the commissariat. Visitors and goods alike were accommodated here before being transported in the railway carts that were propelled by convict labour across the peninsula to Port Arthur. This system averted the perilous journey by ship, which had to sail around Cape Raoul in Storm Bay. The wooden railway has rotted away, leaving only the station at the town now known as Taranna. The residence, which once accommodated the storekeeper as well as the island stores, has been converted into a bed-and-breakfast facility. The convict station at Norfolk Bay is located in the town of Taranna, on the Tasman Peninsula.

Norfolk Island moreporkNinox novaeseelandiae undulata, was a bird in the true owl family endemic to Norfolk Island. It is an extinct subspecies of the southern boobook (Ninox novaeseelandiae). However, although the taxon is extinct, its genes live on in the descendants of the hybrid offspring of the last female bird, which was sighted for the last time in 1996. The Norfolk Island morepork was very similar in appearance to other subspecies of the southern boobook, being a small brown hawk owl with mottled plumage. It was smaller, darker and more reddish in colouring than the Australian subspecies, with much spotting; however, it was slightly larger than the nominate subspecies from New Zealand. The owl inhabited the island's subtropical rain forest, which was largely cleared in the 19th century following human settlement. Most of the remaining forest lies within the small (4.65km²) Mt Pitt section of the Norfolk Island National Park. The population of the Norfolk Island morepork declined with the clearance and modification of its forest habitat, especially the felling of large trees with suitable hollows for nesting. There was also competition for nest hollows with feral honey bees and introduced crimson rosellas. By 1986 the population had been reduced to a single female bird, named "Miamiti" after a matriarch of the Norfolk Island people. As part of a program to attempt to conserve at least some of the genes of the insular subspecies, two male southern boobooks (moreporks) of the nominate New Zealand subspecies, Ninox novaeseelandiae novaeseelandiae, were introduced to the island as mates for the female. The males were sourced from the New Zealand subspecies rather than one of the Australian subspecies as it was discovered that it was more closely related to the Norfolk Island taxon. One of the introduced males disappeared a year after introduction but the other successfully mated with the female, with the pair producing fledged chicks in 1989 and 1990. The original female disappeared in 1996 but, by then, there was a small hybrid population of about a dozen birds. These birds and their descendants continue to exist on the island. also known as the Norfolk boobook, Norfolk Island boobook, Norfolk Island owl.

Norfolk Island pine -Araucaria heterophylla, a forest giant that can reach heights of 61m. Growing very upright (occasionally with a graceful lean), the tree forms a very symmetrical pyramid, with branches emerging from the trunk in a regular and precise pattern. Not actually a pine, this plant is a member of the Araucariaceae family that includes several other trees of ornamental interest. The male cones are cylindrical; the seeds are formed inside the roughly spherical female cones. The foliage is soft looking and light green. Leaves on young trees are narrowly wedge-shaped; on mature trees the leaves are scalelike and overlapping. The juvenile foliage of the Norfolk Island pine is soft and pliable as well as durable and beautiful. It's even rugged enough to grow indoors, where it thrives with little attention. All of the species of Araucaria are native to the Southern Hemisphere, where many have economic significance and all are enjoyed for their ornamental appearance. Araucaria heterophylla is native to Norfolk Island, east of Australia. This island was discovered by Captain James Cook, claimed for Great Britain, and named for the Duchess of Norfolk and now an Australian territory. The tiny 3 by 5 mile long tropical paradise is famous not only for its namesake tree, but has a place in history, having been settled in 1856 by Pitcairners, descendants of Fletcher Christian and the other mutineers from the H.M.S. Bounty. Today the Norfolk island pine's unique beauty is seen in tropical and sub-tropical landscapes all over the world.

Norfolk Island Territory—a self-governing Australian Territory situated in the South Pacific approximately 1600km north-east of Sydney, 900km north-east of Lord Howe Island and 1100km north-west of Auckland, New Zealand. As Norfolk Island has never been joined to any major land mass, some faunal groups are either under-represented or absent. There are no amphibians (such as frogs) and only two species of reptile have been recorded, a gecko and a skink. The island, which was formed by volcanic activity, is about 8km long and 5km wide with an area of 3455ha. It is hilly, with two peaks approximately 300m above sea level—Mount Bates and Mount Pitt. The coastline is mostly of rugged cliffs with small beach areas at Emily Bay, Slaughter Bay and Anson Bay. Discovered by Captain James Cook, it was claimed by him for Great Britain and named in honour of the Duchess of Norfolk. Cook sailed on, and the island was to remain uninhabited for a further 14 years. Since then the island has seen two penal settlements come and go, the second of which was the most brutal ever established by Britain. In 1856 the island received those who call it home to this day—the Pitcairners, descendants of the Bounty mutineers. During the intervening 140 years, these people have nurtured the island to make it a prosperous, tranquil and beautiful place.

Norm—a favourite Aussie fictional character made popular by the 'Life, Be in It' advertising campaign—an opinionated slob who sits around watching telly and drinking booze.

Normanby Island—in North Queensland, part of the Frankland Islands 30km north-east of Babinda, and south-west of Cairns. The Frankland Islands feature vibrant and colourful rain forest met by beautiful, unspoilt beaches and brilliant coral gardens that are teeming with permanent and migratory marine life, tropical fish, giant clams and, most notably, the green sea turtle, which nests on the island. Normanby Island is around 7ha in size. Randomly located sites on the western sides of the Frankland Islands were surveyed by the Australian Institute of Marine Science early in 1995, and three sites with permanent markers were set up on the exposed eastern and the sheltered western faces in 1998. Sites on both faces of these islands were surveyed using fixed transects at the height of the coral bleaching in April 1998. Over 60% of the hard corals were found to be bleached. All coral groups except poritids were extensively bleached. Poritids were only slightly affected, with less than 10% of colonies bleaching. Coral death after bleaching led to significant reductions in the cover of all coral groups. Pocilloporids were most severely affected with almost 100% mortality, but even the cover of poritids declined slightly. Bleaching in 1998 reduced average hard coral cover on Frankland Island fringing reefs from 67% to 37%. Reductions were similar on both the eastern and western reefs. Over 70% of soft corals (primarily Sinularia spp.) were also bleached, but these apparently recovered and soft coral cover increased slightly between the 1998 and 1999 surveys. Eastern reefs were also affected by the crown-of-thorns starfish, Acanthaster planci (COTS) in 1998. Following the losses from bleaching and COTS, a few small pocilloporids recruits were recorded on both sides of the islands in December 2000.

Norman River—rises in the Eastern Highlands of Queensland, and flows for over 400km north-west through fairly flat country to Karumba on the Gulf of Carpentaria. The river flows through tropical forests in the upper reaches, with many cattle stations along the savannah banks.

Normanton—a remote rural community and the central town of the Gulf Savanna. The 2500-strong population comprises a large Aboriginal community, rural workers, white and blue collar workers within both Normanton and Karumba, as well as a transient population of fisherman and a growing number of tourists (there were 98,000 visitors to this area during 1998). Established on the Norman River by William Landsborough, Normanton was the port for the Croydon gold rush and is a terminus of the historic Normanton to Croydon Railway with a classic example of Victorian architecture preserved in the Normanton Railway Station. Normanton is situated on a high, sandy ridge between the edges of the Gulf Savannah grasslands. The surrounding area comprises coastal salt pans and mangrove-fringed river systems. There are numerous water holes and ephemeral wetlands. This area is internationally recognised as an important location for an estimated third of Australia's migratory wading birds.

Norseman—established as a result of the quest for gold in the Kalgoorlie—Coolgardie area. The first discoveries were made in 1892, after which Norseman grew rapidly. Today there are still a number of small gold mining operations in the area, but only one is a major producer. Modern Norseman is a sprawling town driven by mining and tourism, and dominated by a huge tailings dump (4 million tonnes of fine quartz). Norseman is the last major town in Western Australia before heading east across the Nullarbor Plain.

Norseman-Wiluna Greenstone Belt—the Bullabulling mining project area is located in the Norseman-Wiluna Greenstone Belt, within the Coolgardie Domain of the Kalgoorlie Terrane. The project is on the western side of this greenstone belt, on the axis where the south-west trending Coolgardie belt swings to the northwest towards Bullabulling. The Coolgardie Domain consists of a lower basalt unit overlain by a komatiite unit, which is overlain by felsic volcanic and sedimentary rocks. The bedrock of the area is largely obscured by cover and it is only in recent years that the extent of the greenstone belt at Gnarlbine has been revealed by aeromagnetics and exploration drilling to extend significantly further south than indicated on previously published, interpretive geological maps. The tenement area is almost wholly soil-covered with weathering commonly extending to depths in excess of 40m.

North Central Arnhem Land—a region with an interesting history of cultural admixture. On its western border is the Western Arnhem Land region, a vast area that is linguistically and culturally diverse. To the east is north-east Arnhem Land otherwise known as the Yolngu cultural bloc. The contemporary settlements of Ramingining and Milingimbi are the two main Aboriginal communities within north-central Arnhem Land, each with about a dozen satellite outstations or homelands. On the mainland at Ramingining and its surrounds, the traditional owners are the Djinang- and Djinba-speaking groups, with Burarra, Rembarrnga and Gupapuyngu estates forming an enclave around them. On Milingimbi Island, the traditional owners speak Yan-Nhangu. The didgeridoo in North Central Arnhem Land is played with the overtone, but unlike the dense, rapid-fire effect that is utilised in north-east Arnhem Land, the overtone tends to be slower and deliberately sustained. The musical structure of the Djinang and Djinba clan songs consist of repeating baseline accented doublets interjected by metronomic overtone spurts. The Gupapuyngu display more finesse in their use of the didgeridoo and are musically and culturally aligned with North East Arnhem Land.

North Coast bioregion—covers northern NSW from the shoreline to the Great Escarpment. Typically, there is a sequence from coastal sand barrier, through low foothills and ranges, to the steep slopes and gorges of the escarpment itself, with rainfall increasing inland along this transect. The Great Escarpment is very prominent in this bioregion. The largest volcanic centre, resulting from Tertiary basalt eruption, is the Tweed volcano and the associated Mount Warning caldera (exploded crater) near the NSW/Qld border. This complex is dated between 20 and 24 million years old, and at the time of eruption was a shield volcano with low slopes that covered an area 80 by 100km. The Tweed, Richmond, Clarence, Coffs Harbour, Bellinger, Nambucca, Macleay, Hastings and Manning River catchments all fall in the North Coast bioregion.

North Keeling Island—an internationally significant seabird rookery with 17 of the 25 bird species recorded on the island actually breeding there. The dominant bird species, the red-footed booby, maintains one of the largest breeding colonies in the world on the island. Fourteen species of birds recorded on the island are listed in the Japan-Australia Migratory Birds Agreement or the China-Australia Migratory Birds Agreement. North Keeling Island contains rare ecosystems now absent from other islands of the Cocos (Keeling) group. It can be used as a source of seed material for revegetation of the southern atoll, and a gene pool for recolonisation of the southern atoll. North Keeling Island is significant to studies of island biogeography because of its evolution in isolation, and it continues to be a site of scientific research. The Cocos (Keeling) Islands have held a special place in the literature on coral atolls because they represent the only atoll that Charles Darwin visited, and they played a central role in his discussion of his theory of coral reef development. the climate is sub-tropical. The islands are affected by cyclonic conditions, but are rarely in the direct path of cyclones. There are no major industries on the islands. It is part of the Territory of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands, located in the Indian Ocean 2768km north-west of Perth, 3685km due west of Darwin, approximately 900km south-south-west of Christmas Island and approximately 1000km south-west of Java and Sumatra. The islands in the southern atoll comprises an area totalling 14sq km. North Keeling Island is an uninhabited atoll approximately 75km north of the southern atoll, and is protected as a World Heritage Reserve under the control of Parks Australia Cocos (Keeling) Islands. The only passenger transport connection with the rest of the world is a once-weekly airflight to Christmas Island and Perth.

North Molle Island—often passed by yachts on their way to and from the Whitsundays, but is not often used as a stopover. The camping site is very pretty and in easy reach from Airlie Beach. North Molle Island is in the Whitsunday Passage, Queensland.

North Stradbroke Island—the second largest sand island in the world, with kilometres of white sandy beaches fringing the island's eastern side. The calm waters of Moreton Bay lap against the shores of the island's western fishing towns. Located in the state of Queensland, 30km south-east of the capital Brisbane. Before 1896 the island was part of Stradbroke Island but in that year a storm separated it from South Stradbroke Island, forming the Jumpinpin Channel. It is known colloquially as Straddie. The island is about 38km long and 11km wide. North Stradbroke, South Stradbroke and Moreton Island act as a barrier to Moreton Bay. The permanent population of the island is around 2000 but the number of people on the island swells significantly during the holiday season. The native name for the island is Minjerribah but in 1827 Captain Henry John Rous, who had the title of Viscount Dunwich, commander of HMS Rainbow, the first British ship of war to enter Moreton Bay, named the island after his father the Earl of Stradbroke, the town after his title, the entrance channel after himself and even gave his boat a guernsey with the naming of Rainbow Beach. However, three shipwrecked sailors, Thomas Pamphlett, John Finnegan and Richard Parsons, spent time on Stradbroke Island after they were washed ashore in 1823. The local Aboriginal people supplied them with food and shelter and even gave them a canoe to help them on their way. Before these three, Matthew Flinders called in at Stradbroke Island for fresh water and also mapped a large section of Moreton Bay. Flinders was impressed by the Stradbroke Aborigines' health and hospitality. Well known local historian, Thomas Welsby, records an Aboriginal oral tradition that there was an even earlier contact with European shipwreck survivors who walked into one of the Aboriginal camps after their ship was wrecked on the ocean side of Stradbroke Island. This tradition states that one of the men's name was Juan and the other's was Woonunga. In 1890 a member of the Campbell family, one of Stradbroke's oldest mixed blood families, told Welsby that the remains of the ship were still visible in the 18 Mile Swamp and that the remains were of English oak. This story gives rise to a local legend that the remains of a Spanish or Portuguese shipwreck known as the Stradbroke Island Galleon exist somewhere in the 18 Mile Swamp. North Stradbroke Island's most famous local was Oodgeroo Noonuccal, formerly known as Kath Walker, the Aboriginal poet and native-rights campaigner. She was one of the prime movers of the movement that led to the 1997 landmark agreement between the local government council and the Aboriginal people of the area, claiming rights over the island and parts of Moreton Bay. The indigenous Quandamooka people are made up of the Noonuccal, Goenpul and Ngugi tribes. Quandamooka is the Aboriginal name for Moreton Bay; however North Stradbroke Island is also inhabited by the Quandamooka people. In July 2011, the Quandamooka people of North Stradbroke Island won a 16-year-long historic battle to have their Native Title claim recognised. In 1949, sand mining operations began on North Stradbroke Island. Mining moved into the interior of the island in the late 1960s and increased in scale and size. There are several accounts from sand mining employees of unusual artifacts being found during dredging operations. The minerals extracted are used mainly in glass production, but also in digital tablets such as iPads, paints, plastics, metals, cosmetics and biotechnological devices (such as prosthesis), both for domestic and international markets. Under the State Government's Stradbroke Island Sustainability and Protection Act 2011, 80% of the island will become national park by 2026, which will be jointly managed by the Quandamooka people under the Indigenous Land Use Agreement.

North West Cape—the tip of a peninsula bordered by the Indian Ocean to the north and west, and the Gulf of Exmouth to the east. Roughly 50 miles long, it varies in width from two miles at the northern-most tip, to 30 miles at the southern end. A low eroded ridge, Cape Range, runs along the peninsula and peters out near the Cape, and the Ningaloo Reef runs for 260km along the west coast. The Harold E. Holt Naval Communications Base is located on the flat, low-lying area towards the tip of the peninsula, and is jointly owned and operated by the United States and Australian Navies. The main VLF antenna for the naval base is located right at the tip of the peninsula, and is supported by a central tower (Tower Zero). The North West Cape is also home to a variety of wildlife. Emus roam the area freely, kangaroos are abundant, and the rare black-footed wallaby survives in a few of the gorges of the Cape Range. The waters surrounding the North West Cape are also the home of an abundant variety of fish, mammals, and reptiles. From February to May, the whale shark migrates past the Cape.

North West Desert—a region encompassing eastern Western Australia and western Northern Territory. Largely untouched by development, the region is predominantly the domain of a group of Aboriginal tribes that are collectively known as the Northern Desert cultural bloc.

North West Region—the far north-west corner of Victoria is characterised by vast, semi-arid mallee bushlands. Sunset country, Murray Outback, Mallee and Sunraysia are all names by which this territory is also known. Along the Murray River, large-scale irrigation changed the small riverside villages into substantial towns, supporting the resulting lush farmlands. The warm Mediterranean climate and ready access to water has spawned a thriving horticultural industry, favouring citrus orchards, grape growing, melons, avocado and olive groves. Bountiful fresh produce is reflected in the multi-cultural culinary interests to be found in prominent towns such as Mildura. Respected wineries are another feature of the region. Beyond the fertile plains you will find some inspiring and unique outback tracts now protected in extensive national parks. Across the Murray in ancient times megafauna roamed the area, and Aboriginal people lived and hunted there, before world climate changes turned it to desert. Excellent fossil remains and Aboriginal artefacts reveal the history of the area long before white settlers arrived. Aboriginal descendents of the Yorta Yorta and Barkindji peoples of the area run tours and maintain cultural centres to give visitors an insight into their traditions and legends. In more recent history, but still prior to the introduction of irrigation, the Murray River was a major conduit for trade, and restored or replica paddle steamers are now part of the smorgasbord of experiences for visitors to the area. The region's main towns of Mildura and Swan Hill are located along the Murray River, which delineates the border with New South Wales.

North West Shelf—the most economically significant land or sea region in Australia. It produces the majority of Australia’s domestic and exported oil and gas, and hosts commercial fisheries, aquaculture, salt production and tourism, and shipping associated with the transport of oil, gas, salt and iron ore. These industries operate in a 110,000sq km region of tremendous natural wealth and biodiversity covering some 1500km of coastline, from North West Cape in the south to Port Hedland in the north of Western Australia. The marine environments of the North West Shelf support some of the most complex biological systems on earth, primarily due to the Pacific to Indonesian Through Flow. The North West Shelf is located in the Oceanic Shoals bioregion.

North West Slopes—located to the west of the Northern Tablelands. As you move westwards the slopes flatten to broad plains. Sheep, cattle and grain are the chief farming industries. There is also some cotton growing, this is irrigated. Rainfall drops rather significantly as you move westwards. In the east nearer to the Great Dividing Range the average is 500mm—750mm. Towards the west, this drops to as low as 400mm. Rainfall can come at any time of year, but summer is wetter, with thunderstorm activity providing much of the rainfall. Thunderstorms on the slopes can be severe, with squalls and hail. This is also one of the areas in Australia were tornadoes have been recorded. Summer daytime highs can be quite hot, especially on the plains. The average range would be 27—35C, with days over 38C quite common on the plains. Winter daytime highs are mild on the plains, the slopes are slightly cooler. Snow is only an extremely rare visitor to the higher mountains that may occur in the area such as the Warrumbungle Range. Snow does not fall on the plains. Frost is common in winter if high pressure is located overhead. This area is one of the more drought prone in New South Wales.

north-and-south—(rhyming slang) mouth.

Northampton Complex—an area of basement consisting of granite, granulite (a granite-like rock formed by regional metamorphism) and migmatite. The basement is overlain, or abutted, by sedimentary rocks. The Silurian Tumblagooda Sandstone occurs on the western and eastern flanks. This is overlain in places by the Triassic Kockatea Shale, and by Jurassic sediments. The Jurassic sediments also directly overlie parts of the southern area of the Northampton Complex. In the south-east, the basement is abutted by Permian and Jurassic sedimentary rocks of the Perth Basin. The western and coastal area is overlain by coastal dune systems. Groundwater is generally available only in small supplies and is of variable salinity. In spite of this, however, groundwater is locally important for small-scale horticulture and aquaculture, and is used for town water supply. Saline groundwater has also been used for aquaculture at Hutt Lagoon. Located in Western Australia.

northern bettongBetongia tropica, a small, rat-like marsupial of far north-eastern Queensland. Northern bettongs depend on underground truffles (fungus balls), their unusual feeding behaviour contributing to the health of forest communities. If this endangered marsupial disappears, the vitality of the whole ecosystem will change. It is presently known only from three small isolated populations in Far North Queensland, all within 80 km of one another. This 1.2kg marsupial is a Potoroid, a group commonly known as rat-kangaroos.

northern brown bandicootIsoodon macrourus, the most common road-kill victim among native animals, according to a study done at the Southern Cross University on "vehicle-induced mortality of wildlife". The species is currently regarded as common, yet is prone to sudden population declines. Intense fires in the late Dry season are thought to be a major contributor to such declines. The northern brown (along with the long-nosed bandicoot) have the shortest gestation period of any mammal, giving birth to two to three young, 12 and a half days after mating. Found across northern and eastern Australia, south to the Hawkesbury River of New South Wales.

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