Read and translate the text. The climate in Australia is varied and ranges from tropical to sub alpine

The climate in Australia is varied and ranges from tropical to sub alpine.

Australia is also the driest inhabited continent on earth, but the eastern seaboard where the majority of the population is concentrated, is a lush and fertile area, with a climate ranging from temperate to tropical. The main mountain range is known as the Great Dividing Range has an area known as the Snowy Mountains, or otherwise known as the Australian Alps. This area actually receives snow than Switzerland, and is the only area suitable for skiing in Australia.

Most of the continent receives more than 3,000 hours of sunshine a year, or nearly 70% of the total possible.

Australia also contains many pockets of tropical and temperate rain forest on the eastern coast, but the predominate forest in Australia is Eucalypti forest.

The southwest corner of Western Australia has a Meditarranean climate and the Northern regions of this continent have areas of Rainforest and below that are large areas of savanna grasslands. Tasmania, the island state in the south has large areas of temperature wilderness and steep mountains.

Many parts of Australia have scanty and irregular rainfall. Only where rainfall is plentiful and reliable one can see tall trees are the blue gums of Tasmania, the Big Trees of eastern Victoria, which reach a height of 300 feet. Other tall trees grow along the rainy east coast and many other small trees and plants crowd the forest here, including the ferns and creepers.

The commonest trees of Australia are the eucalyptus, of which there are over 500 kinds.

Some Australian trees and plants produce hard woody fruits and seeds.

Australia has 20,000 species of plants and brilliant wild flowers such as the red and green kangaroo paw. The continent has many species eucalypti or gum trees. Many of the trees lose their bark not leaves and many flowers.

Nature fauna in Australia are protected and managed by state and territorial governments.

The climate of Australia varies greatly. The climate ranges from tropical (monsoonal) in the north to temperate in the south. The tropical region, which includes about 40 percent of the total area of Australia, has only two seasons: a hot, wet season with rains falling mainly in February and March, during which the northern and north-eastern coast have an average annual rainfall of 1524 mm in parts of Queensland overade annual rainfall exceeds 2540 mm.

UNIT 22. CLIMATE AND NATURE OF AUSTRALIA

22.1. Read and translate the text

Australia is situated to the southeast of Asia. It is washed by the Timor Sea in the north, by the Coral and Tasman Seas in the east, and by the Indian Ocean in the south and west.

Australia is the most droughty continent in the earth. It is an extremely hot country. Summer months are December, January and February. The average summer temperature is from 20 to 30 degrees above zero. Winter months are June, July and Au­ gust. The average winter temperature is from 12 to 20 degrees above zero. The most part of the territory lies in tropics. Its southwestern territories lie in subtropics. As droughts are rather common and the amount of rainfall is rather small There are not many rivers in Australia. The largest rivers are the Darling and the Murray.

The isolation of Australia from other continents explains much of the unusualness of Australian plant and animal life. There are forests in the southern and eastern parts of the country. The commonest tree of Australia is the eucalyptus. In the drier areas there is the Australian acacia or mimosa. In those areas one can also find strange bottle trees. They preserve water in their trunks.

Australian animals are also very unusual. Among them there are kangaroos, duck­bills, koala bears, and others. Nine tenth of animal species of Australia do not exist in other parts of the world.

22.2. Answer the questions:

1. How many seas is Australia washed by?

2. What are winter and summer months in Australia?

3. What is the average summer and winter temperature?

4. What are the longest rivers?

5. What are the commonest trees in Australia?

Animals

The dry, desert-like plains of the Australian outback cover more than two-thirds of the continent. Much of the region receives less than 250 mm of rainfall a year. Although the rains may come at any time of the year, there are often long periods of drought, which make it difficult for animals to survive.

Many of the animals avoid the heat of the day by staying in their burrows, since it is cooler and damper underground. Some small animals sleep underground right through the hottest summer months. This is called aestivation. Many outback animals can survive with little or no water. Their bodies are adapted to store water from their food and to lose very little water in their urine. A number of animals have long back leas to help them more rapidly and find what little food is available.

There are many animals and birds in Australia:

Koala (length: 80 cm);

Long jumper. Red kangaroo (height: 2m; tail: 1m);

Wild dog. Dingo (height at shoulder: 50 cm; length: up to 90 cm);

High-speed runner emu: (height: 2m);

Huge burrow (height at shoulder: 45cm);

Huge lizard (length including tail: up to 2,4 m);

Spiny coat (length: 50 cm; spines: 6 cm);

Silky killer (length: 3 cm);

Numbat (body length: up to 30 cm; tail: up to 20 cm);

Raggiana’s bird of paradise (body length: up to 95 cm; tail feathers: 50 cm) and many others.


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