Geology

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Christian is interested in Tasmania. Below are some photos from my collection taken in 1988...

Natural Beauty to Discover

 Coastline

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Caves

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Beaches

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Wateralls

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Hiking

A famous hike in Tasmania follows the Overland Track. Starting at Cradle Mountain, you head across mountain and valley until you reach Lake St. Clair. Catching a boat across the lake, you then make your way home. You can go with a group of friends or join a walking tour but allow about six days and make certain you're fit. 🙂

Cradle Mountain and the start of your journey.

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Location: Cradle Mountain, Tasmania, Australia

Lake St.Clair

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Location: Lake St. CLair, Tasmania, Australia

For details about the Overland Hiking Tours... Cradle Mountain Huts Tour details

 

Mining and Logging

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Location: Queenstown, Tasmania, Australia

These are the hills around the town of Queenstown. Mining and smelting of copper had eventually killed the trees on the mountains. The town is proud of its mining past but mining ended in 1994. Tourism is now a big money earner for the community. With the rebuilding of the old mining railway, the West Coast Wilderness Railway offers a wonderful scenic ride across the mountains to Strahan (pronounced "strawn") where tourists can ride boats along the beautiful Gordon River (pictured below).

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Location: Gordon River, Tasmania, Australia

Then There Are the Animals

Bennetts Wallaby

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Location: Lake St. CLair, Tasmania, Australia

Cape Barren Geese

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Location: Lake St. CLair, Tasmania, Australia

Some of the Tasmanian animals in a museum display

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Aboriginal Heritage

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The picture is a museum display showing the type of shelters used by Tasmanian Aborigines. The animal you see is a Tasmanian devil. Unlike the Bugs Bunny Tassie, he is the size of a small dog. The devils are meat and carrion eaters and, like kangaroos, are marsupials, i.e. pouched animals.

There was once a vibrant Aboriginal culture in Tasmania but, with the coming of colonists, disease and official persecution brought an end to their language and much of their cultural heritage. It was one of Australia's saddest times in history. For more information on Aboriginal Tasmanians

Convict Past

The first Europeans to come to live in Tasmania were convicts sent by England. They have left behind the remains of their occupation at places such as Port Arthur and in bridges and buildings around Tasmania.

Port Arthur

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Location: Port Arthur, Tasmania, Australia

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Location: Port Arthur, Tasmania, Australia

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Location: Port Arthur, Tasmania, Australia

Convict built bridge at Richmond

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Location: Richmond, Tasmania, Australia

Convict built bridge at Ross.

I wonder if your can work out why I like the name of this town? 🙂

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Location: Ross, Tasmania, Australia

 

Tasmania lies about as far south of the equator as Iowa is north of the equator.

11 Comments

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NUMBER 100: As the recipient of my 100th Extended Comment, Mrs. Yollis and class will be receiving a copy of “Wombat’s Secret” book, Bruce the Wombat, a Potoroo Palace souvenir (where I take many animal photos) and postcards of New Zealand including Mt. Cook mentioned in this post.

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To view the original post from Mrs. Yollis and class...

National Geographic's Giant Map of Asia

Dear Mrs. Yollis and class,

Your map is most certainly not the size to put up on a wall in class.  🙂

When looking at your map of Asia, the continent closest to Australia, it made me think of the long history of the various cultures of Asia, the diverse landscapes, and the interesting people who have added so much to our world. I know my family can trace some of my ancestors back to Asia as would be true for so many of us.

Looking at the map, it also made me consider what has often been called the Indian Subcontinent. Perhaps some of you have heard of continental drift? It’s where the surface of the world is really a series of “plates” floating on the magma (lava) layers below the surface. Scientists call the plates, tectonic plates.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plate_tectonics

India is on a separate plate to much of Asia, as is much of what many call the Middle East. Over many millions of years what was thought to be one large mass of land has broken up with sections drifting away. Some call that ancient land mass Pangaea. Here is a Wikimedia Commons graphic of Pangaea showing the positions of where today's tectonic plates might have been.

Pangaea continents

This is a Wikimedia Commons graphic.

For more information about Pangaea, here is the Wikipedia link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pangaea

According to Wikipedia, Pangaea started breaking up about 200 million years ago.  At that time, what was to become India was closer to Africa, Antarctica and Australia. India’s plate broke away and headed north eventually running into the Eurasian plate where we see it today. It’s this very slow collision of the plates that caused the great mountains of the Himalayas to rise, including Mount Everest.

I have read the Himalayas are still rising at about 15mm (0.6 inches) a year. It may not sound like much but, over 10,000 years, that would be 150,000 mm or 15,000cm or 150m (that is about 6000 inches or 500 feet).

Don’t you love the numbers involved? A small amount can, given time, become a big amount.

If you look at the following picture from Wikipedia, you can see the positions of the modern tectonic plates. You will see you’re on the North American plate and it is pushing along the Pacific plate. You would all know one of the places where this is happening. Have any of you seen the San Andreas Fault?

Plates tect2 en

This is a Wikimedia Commons graphic.

Looking at some of your buddy classes in “Our World, Our Numbers” you can see Canada is also along the same plate border with you. Your New Zealand buddies are also on a border but their border is between the Australian and Pacific plates. Your Australian and United Kingdom buddies aren’t on the border of their plates.

Imagine, without this movement we wouldn't have magnificent mountains like New Zealand's Mt. Cook...

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Location: Mount Cook, New Zealand

Here are two videos showing information about plate tectonics. The first link is to an easy to understand animation.

http://www.makemegenius.com/video_play.php?id=138&type=0

The second video gives extra, harder information…

This embedded You Tube clip is not my video.

@RossMannell

B4, as part of their collaborative project, "Our World, Our Numbers" posted an image of Pancake Rocks and suggested other landmarks in New Zealand. Bradley responded to my comment. To see their original post...

New Zealand Landmarks

Dear Bradley,

In a way I did see a dinosaur at Pancake Rocks but only when watching a documentary on dinosaurs.

In 2000, BBC Worldwide Ltd. released a twin DVD set named, “Walking With Dinosaurs”. Wanting a scene for the great southern land at the time of the dinosaurs, they chose New Zealand. An ornithocheirus appeared on the rocks care of computer animation. The scene appears in “Episode 4 – Giants of the Skies”.

I have found the episode on You Tube. You should ask your teacher before viewing it to make certain you have permission. I think you will quickly recognise Pancake Rocks. 🙂

This video is not mine and should not be copied. This is only a link to a BBC You Tube video.

In reality, the dinosaurs were long gone before Pancake Rocks started to form.

You live in an amazing country, Bradley. There are so many landmarks to see. I'll share my photos of some of my favourite places in New Zealand. I think you'll know some of them.

The South Island

Pancake Rocks is also one of my favourites.

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Living on the east coast of Australia, I had seen sunrise over the ocean but my first ocean sunset was seen at Geymouth.

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Climbing on Franz Joseph Glacier was a real experience.

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Cruising on board the TSS Earnslaw on Lake Wakatipu.

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Riding on board the Kingston Flyer.

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Visiting Milford Sound.

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Walking the valley towards Mt. Cook.

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and on the North Island

Looking across Lake Taupo to the snow-capped volcanoes of Tongariro National Park.

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Visiting the Whakarewarewa thermal area and seeing the Pohutu Geyser.

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Walking down Waimangu Valley thermal area and seeing steaming cliffs and hot water streams.

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Exploring the volcanic crater of Mt. Tarawera. The arrow is pointing to some people on the far rim. Can you see them?

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@RossMannell

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This post is in reply to a comment left by Battalion Hawk Bloggers. Here is a link to the original post. You need to scroll down to their comment.

Battalion Hawk Bloggers

Hello The Battalion Hawk Bloggers,

It seems my little birthday secret wasn’t so secret. 🙂  With many of my adult Facebook friends former students of mine, I had a number of birthday greetings come in.

Awakino – There was more than normal driftwood on the beach that day. I suspect heavy rains had brought the trees down the river and heavy sees prevented it escaping. I have other photos where not so much driftwood was around.

Koalas – You may know this from your research but koalas survive on a diet of eucalypt tree leaves. The leaves don’t have much nutrition so the koala’s sleeping habit is a way of conserving energy while the leaves are digested. They normally don’t drink water, relying on water within the leaves but can sometimes come down from tree to drink if  there is a need.

In a recent bushfire, a firefighter found a koala suffering some burns. Cupping water in his hand, the female was able to take a drink before being taken to see a vet. Here is a link to the news article…

http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/article/2012/11/13/549082_national-news.html

I don’t have a video of koalas walking on the ground but here is a series of photos showing one walking from one tree to another…

Schools and students have permission to use this "Koala Walking" video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Mt. Tarawera – Scree seems to get into things easily as you go down the steep slope. I think some even made it into my pockets as my legs dug deep intot he slope with each step. Considering how deep my legs went with each step down. I wasn’t worried about falling and rolling down. Maybe a sled would make a very quick trip down but stopping mightn’t be fun. 🙂

Hawaii – I understand the confusion with coral and pumice. The pumice came from an underwater volcano between Fiji and Tonga if I remember correctly, probably nearer Tonga. Large amounts floated all the way to Australia. I picked up samples on a beach in Queensland. It also had coral on the beach, although the coral came from Australia’s The Great Barrier Reef. The samples can look similar.

Alberta – Alberta certainly has collection of provincials. I’ve heard of the big horn sheep, great hormed owl and bull trout and have petrified wood in my rock collection. While I don’t have ammolite in my collection, I do have a similar gemstone called opal. We have white and black opal in Australia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opal

I must admit I didn’t know my state’s motto but found New South Wales’ state motto is “Newly risen, how brightly you shine.”

http://www.nsw.gov.au/symbols-emblems-nsw

I like the idea of having the Canada Goose as a national bird. They are magnificent birds and their migration south in winter is fascinating. I can remember the 1996 film “Fly Away Home” showing the way young orphaned Canada geese imprinted on humans were guided south by humans un ultra-light aircraft as would normally. I thought it a little strange the girl starring in the film in Canada was New Zealand’s Anna Paquin.

New Australian Flag? – Many have proposed designs for a new Australian flag yet nothing official has been decided. Below is a link to a group called Flags Australia. Scroll down and you can see some suggestions for a new Australian flag. You will see kangaroos in some designs.

http://www.flagsaustralia.com.au/newflag.html

A sleepy koala on our flag would be an interesting idea but some might look at the flag and think Aussies are sleepy so I chose a noble looking koala for the koala flag below (besides, when I checked, surprisingly, I hadn't any photographs of sleepy koalas).

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I would love to see your ideas for a new Australian flag. 🙂

I remember when Canada changed its flag. Back then I thought it would be a great idea if Australia did the same. Perhaps it will in time. 🙂

Which country is larger, Australia or Canada? – I knew Canada had a larger area but I wondered by how much. A quick check online showed me…

Canada    – 9,985,000 square kilometres

Australia – 7,618,000 square kilometres

Canada is therefore 2,367,000 square kilometres larger than Australia. Another check on population at 2011…

Canada    – 34,482,779

Australia – 22,620,600

Canada had 11,862,179 more people than Australia in 2011. I love working with numbers so I was wondering how many Canadians and Australians there were per square kilometre in 2011. I divided population by area and found…

For every square kilometre of Canada there is approximately 3.45 Canadians.

For every square kilometre of Australia there is approximately 2.97 Australians.

This means Australians have about half a person less per square kilometre than Canada. I know much of Canada has few if any inhabitants due to the arctic cold. Australia also has large areas with few or no population but in our case it’s because of desert. I suppose this also means Australia is a much drier place than Canada. In fact, I think the only continent with less average precipitation (rainfall/snowfall) than Australia is Antarctica.

 

Thank you for again sharing interesting information and helping me learn more about Canada and Alberta. You always start me thinking about the world when I read your posts and comments. 🙂

@RossMannell

Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia

For the Roadrunners original post ...

ROAD RUNNERS

For the Extended Comment carrying their comment as a stimulus for this post...

EXTENDED COMMENT

Hello Roadrunners,

My apologies for taking a few days to answer. I had a DVD/CD project taking more time than expected and am now catching up on comments. My reply to your comment had some links so I created a new post to share them.

I think you have been able to identify the key similarities when we look at native cultures around the world. They have connections to nature and animals in a way our western culture seems to have forgotten. How could it be any other way when they only had what was in their environment in which to survive?

 Waimangu Valley, New Zealand -Scan of an old 35mm slide.

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Maoris and volcanoes

You may already know a little about one part of Polynesian culture, the Hawaiian people. They believed in Pele

Pele and the Hawaiians

Pele is the goddess fire, lightning, wind and volcanoes. I have done a little research into the Maoris' beliefs.

The first link gives some information about the Maoris around Rotorua (very popular place for tourists to visit) and their traditional stories...

Maoris of Rotorua

The first three help with traditional stories, i.e.  "Creation", "Ngatoroirangi" and"How the fire demons brought geothermal to New Zealand"

Another link is...

Maoris and Volcanoes

This link has some modern explanations along with brief recounts of traditional stories.

Aboriginal Flag - Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Torres Strait Islander Flag - Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Aboriginal Rock Art

Aboriginal rock art is found under ledges or in shallow caves where people were able to shelter from cold, wind and rain. Here is a link to a National Geographic film on rock art

Aboriginal Rock Art - Paintings

The rock art video looked at northern language groups and their art. Around Sydney and other areas you wouldn't find rock "art". You tend to find rock engravings. I have photos of some in my collection but here is a link...

Aboriginal Rock Art - Engraving

I hope these links help. 🙂

1 Comment

for Global Grade 3's original post...

The POWER of a FLATTENED Classroom

*Recently I have been adding "Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes." under my photos and graphics so schools can use them without worrying about copyright if they find them useful. If you see the message below photos, graphics, audio or video, you will know it is okay to use on your school blogs or class projects.

Hello Global Grade 3,

What a wonderful surprise to be honoured by your class in this way. It’s hard to believe my blogging adventures started only early in 2011. At that time I wouldn't have imagined how much blogging would become a part of my life or how many classes I would visit through blogging. Like many things in life, I saw something interesting and tried it out.

Zubayda – The sample of iron sand came from a place in New Zealand’s North Island known as Awakino. The Awakino River enters the Tasman Sea at this point. The heavy iron sands were washed down the river from volcanic areas upstream.  I was able to check slides from a visit to Awakino in 1983 and found a slide of the beach with the iron sands. Below is  can of the old slide. In summer, the beach is too hot to walk on so people walk along a small stream to get to the water’s edge.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Tre – The DVD was to show the sort of thing I make for schools and community groups. Almost every child in the school appeared in their production. I thought it might be fun for you to hear the Aussie accent and see the Aussie kids perform. For many years I used the iron sands when my classes were looking at magnetism. Because the sands don’t seem to rust, I was able to use them many times.

 

Cemre – I have been able to hold a real koala and have photographed and videoed them many times. They are cute looking but are only awake two or three hours a day. Below is a photo I took of Suzie. She lives at Potoroo Palace, an animal refuge near my home.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Nick – The pahoehoe is interesting. It crumbles into sand but, unlike the New Zealand sand, isn’t rich in iron. Did you know there are different types of lava?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lava

Dimitrios – The Australian flag has three major parts to it. The Union Jack is in the top left hand corner and shows our link with the United Kingdom. The five smaller stars on the right are known as the Southern Cross (or Crux to astronomers). While it can be seen in the northern hemisphere at some time in the year, it’s always in our night sky. I can use it to find south at night. The large star under the Union Jack is known as the Commonwealth Star. It has 7 points, one for each state and one for the Australian territories.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Constantine – When you look at flowing lava, you can tell what type it is by how it moves along. The pahoehoe moves along almost like thick honey whereas the a’a’ seems to be chunky and harder.

Jayden – I know how much fun it can be to receive a surprise package. The mystery of what it contains can be exciting.

Chris – The scree was an unusual find in a way. After finishing my tour into the crater, I found many pieces had been caught in my clothing. The way in to the Mt. Tarawera crater is a very steep scree slope. Each step I took in the deep scree was well over a metre long as I made my way down. This meant I didn’t really have to collect it, it caught a ride with me. The iron sand was from New Zealand. The black pahoehoe and a’a’ were from Hawaii. The photo below is already on this blog but I thought I would repeat it. The arrow points to people on the crater rim. You can see a break in the rim to the right of the people where people start down. About half way down the scree slope you can see a trail start. It's a great experience going down the very steep slope. With the deep scree, it's not very likely you would lose you footing but it would be a very long way to roll to the bottom.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

AJ – How many rocks? That would be hard as I have from tiny gemstones to a large and heavy lead/zinc sample. I suppose there might be between one and two hundred samples. The Australian and Canadian dollar are almost in parity (the same value) when I just checked.  $A1.00 = $C1.03 The a’a’ and pahoehoe came from the same area of what Hawaiians call The Big Island. The Big Island is really Hawaii but the whole island chain has taken the name. The samples came Kilaeua lava flows. I don’t have very much of either. Your samples were the third I have sent out, one to England, one to Wales and one to you. You will see the name of the iron sand beach in Zubayda’s reply.

Davis – The small school in the DVD ended up buying around 60 copies of the disks. The money I take in helps me make more for others. I don’t make a profit by what I do but I have to charge for some otherwise I couldn’t afford to make them. The project I am doing for a choir now involves a special DVD for girls in a dance school and a DVD and 2 CDs for the choir. The girls pay $5 for their DVD and the choir gets the DVD and 2CDs for $10.

My favourite? I have recordings I’ve made in schools back to 1982. Each holds a special place in my memory but my favourites are probably the big shows involving 15 schools. There are so many talented students and teachers around.

Obsidian is also known as volcanic glass. Magma with high amounts of silica (also in sand) can form obsidian if it cools quickly.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obsidian

Christopher – There have been many special designs of the Australian dollar but the basic design, and my favourite, is the kangaroo dollar. I agree, sulphur is interesting and easy to find in volcanic areas. It is one of the three major ingredients in making gunpowder. I like sulphur crystals but they need to be protected if they are to keep their shine. My crystal sample was gather, with permission of the owners, from a volcanic area near Rotorua. Rotorua has the smell of sulphur everywhere.

Chelsea – You probably already know the Canadian flag also once had the Union Jack on it before it became what it is today. It wouldn’t surprise me if one day Australia takes a new design. There are many people with suggested designs often including kangaroos and/or stars. What I have always found strange is out $1 coin is bigger than our $2 coin. It always seemed the $2 should have been the bigger.

Rayann – How long to make a movie? I haven’t really kept record of how long it can take but, to give you and example, it has taken me about 8 hours just to design the titles at the beginning and credits at the end for the latest DVD project and more to do the same for the two CDs. There are many other tasks involved but, as a rough guess, my latest project might take around 40 to 50 hours before I make a master DVD for copying.

In my reply to Zubayda, I have shown a picture of the iron sand beach at Awakino in New Zealand.

In my reply to Dimitrios, I discuss the Australian flag.

James – One interesting thing many don’t seem to know is Australia only became a nation in 1901. Before that there were British colonies under the names we now call our states. The states voted to form a commonwealth under the name Australia. The original 1901 flag had only a six pointed star. Our current flag didn't become official until 1934.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_flag

Joyce – The schools DVD was fun to make. They only phoned me the day before to ask if I could film their play as parents had asked for a copy after their first night. The next day I was there checking out the hall and setting up cameras. They didn’t use microphones so the sound was only from the cameras therefore the baby noises.

What was interesting about the box for me is they were all amongst my favourite things. I have a number of glove puppets I’ve used in class, many rock samples, some flags, 30 years of school videos and I have always liked the kangaroo $1.

Ben – Until we can send objects to people on line, we’ll always need snail mail to send gifts. I always enjoy making the DVDs. My most successful can sell around 200 copies but I also give some away for free just because I enjoy making them. Schools know I charge them nothing for small projects. Schools always get a free copy of anything I make for them.

Danny – I probably started collecting rocks when I was your age. I have always been interested in science so geology was just one subject area I explored. My science degree was really in zoology and psychology but I also studied some maths, botany and chemistry at university. I didn't have time to study geology and physics.

The obsidian was bought from a rock shop in New Zealand. I wasn’t able to find any in areas where you are allowed to take samples so rock shops are a great source of interesting ricks and fossils.

Lauren – The school on the DVD is in a small coastal town. It has a beautiful beach, small boat launching inlet, some rugged coastline and is between two national parks with beautiful scenery. I holidayed there as a child as did my mother when she was a girl and my grandfather when he was a boy. My mother’s side of my family has been in this area since 1847. The photo below is taken from a wharf and shows Tathra Beach in the background.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Ella – The koala puppet was bought in a local shop. I have another type of koala in my collection as well as a platypus, kookaburra, and cockatoo plus some non-Australian animals. My favourite local animal refuge has three koalas. I was able to film the first time Suzie’s baby poked its head out of Suzie’s pouch. They also sell Australian animal glove puppets.

Elijah – It wouldn’t be a good idea to use a’a’ as soap as it would be a little too scratchy, There is a volcanic stone I wasn’t able to send that can be used but not as soap. Pumice is a light volcanic stone. When superheated rock is thrown out and cools quickly, bubbles can form. Because of these many small bubbles, pumice is able to float in water. People can use it to rub calluses off their skin. I am out of samples at the moment or I would have included some.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pumice

Rebecca – When called in to film shows, I often don’t know what is going to happen. For the show in the DVD, I had no idea what would happen. I found it fun to watch. The only catch is I can be standing in the same spot for two hours while filming to make sure everything records well. Only when I edit the film on this computer do I have the chance to watch each act and cut out the bloopers or times when nothing is happening.

Tyler – Videoing in schools has been a part of my life since 1982. All the old videotapes are now on DVD so I have 30 years of school history recorded on them. Looking at the 1982 video, it can be hard to believe cute little 5 year old Nathan and Jenny would now be 35 years old. There are many memories stored in my DVDs, slides, negatives and photos. I hope to eventually have all stored on computers so they won’t be lost. J

For the class…

Do YOU know the significance of the six stars on the Australian flag? What do the symbols on YOUR flag represent?

(My reply for Dimitrios)  The Australian flag has three major parts to it. The Union Jack is in the top left hand corner and shows our link with the United Kingdom. The five smaller stars on the right are known as the Southern Cross (or Crux to astronomers). While it can be seen in the northern hemisphere at some time in the year, it’s always in our night sky. I can use it to find south at night. The large star under the Union Jack is known as the Commonwealth Star. It has 7 points, one for each state and one for the Australian territories.

Do you have a national bird, or flower or animal?

Australia

Flower – Golden Wattle

I didn't have a photo of the golden wattle in my collection but here is a photo of a similar wattle.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Bird – emu

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Mammal – kangaroo

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

The three emblems appear of Australia’s Coat of Arms.

This is not my graphic. It was sourced through Wikimedia Commons.

As well as national emblems, each state has its own emblems.

Floral emblems of Australia…

http://www.kidcyber.com.au/topics/emblemsAust.htm

Animal emblems of Australia…

http://www.australiangeographic.com.au/journal/australias-animals-emblems.htm

Bird emblems of Australia…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Australian_bird_emblems

Do you have a favourite rock, mineral or fossil sample in YOUR collection? What makes it your favourite?

My favourite is crystal pyrite. It has the colour of gold and is also known as fool’s gold. It is much prettier than gold although worth very little. It’s easy to tell the difference. Hit a sample with a stone. If it flattens, it’s gold. If it shatters into little pieces, it’s pyrite.

Pyrite is iron sulphide. Here is a sample from my collection. It comes from Northern Territory in Australia. I have seen very beautiful examples from Italy. It measures 6cm across and weighs 250g.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Pyrite is often found mixed in with other minerals. Below is a photo of lead/zinc ore from Tasmania. You can see the golden coloured pyrite at the top of the sample. The sample weighs 2500g mainly because of its lead content.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

@RossMannell

Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia

A link to the original Mr.s Avery and Class post...

All Shook Up

In order to share some links on your post, I had to make a shorter extended post so they could be shared.

 

Hello Mr. Avery and class,

Our active Earth is an interesting topic to study. I shared a post with 4KM and 4KJ of natural disasters including earthquakes...

Natural Disasters

Australia, being more to the middle of its tectonic plate, is stable by comparison to many countries but we also have earthquakes, normally only small ones. I know I slept through one when young and felt the house move a little in another. The link below is mostly about the state of Queensland rather than my state but I like the maps

Earthquakes in Australia

Newcastle, a city to the north of Sydney here in Australia, suffered from a damaging earthquake in 1989...

Newcastle 1989 Earthquake

New Zealand is on the edge of two tectonic plates.

Tectonic Plates

Christchurch on the South Island of New Zealand has had some tragic experiences with earthquakes in recent years...

Christchurch Earthquakes

I believe there are many who think our world would be a better place without volcanoes and earthquakes but, in my post for 4KM and 4KJ, I wrote I find these events important for our survival. Our active world makes our planet a safer place to live. Mars is cold and inactive. It no longer has a strong magnetic field protecting it so, even if we could breathe its atmosphere, we would need protection from solar radiation.

We all live on the thin, shaky bit called the crust.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Keep learning everyone. Posts like yours always teach me new things. 🙂

@RossMannell

Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia

3 Comments

To see Global Grade 3's original post and the comments relating to this post, click below...

Global Grade 3

Hello Global Grade 3,

Looking through some old 35mm slides, I found some interesting ones I had taken years ago. I decided to start scanning them. You are the first with whom I have shared these photos since they were taken.

The volcanoes in New Zealand tend to normally be more ash volcanoes than lava volcanoes. I have seen magma thrown out in photos but I am not aware of any recent lava flows.

Mt. Tarawera is a popular tourist attraction. You can hike up its slopes or go on a four-wheel drive tour. I have taken the easy way up twice now. Once on the rim, you have to hike and climb (not hard) along a trail to the far side of the main crater before going down a steep scree slope to the bottom of the crater. I made the walk with a video camera and tripod plus a 35mm camera in hand. You can see two craters along the walk. The main tourist accessible crater you can see in this extended comment…

http://rossmannellcomments.edublogs.org/2012/05/23/samples-scree-obsidian-samples/

The other crater is to the south of the trail and is shown below.

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Tourists aren’t allowed in that one. You need to be experienced rock climbers due to the dangerous slopes. Below is another slide I scanned with the first. It shows sulphur (sulfur) crystals and was taken near an active vent. Sulphur crystals break down when exposed to water but near a vent, they are kept warm and dry and keep their crystal shine. I have a sample of sulphur crystals in my collection. It has spent 20 years in a clear perspex water-tight container so it keeps its shine.

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In 1996, I was able to travel to Hawaii when my brother won a trip. We also flew down to The Big Island (the real island of Hawaii). I took a chance to take a helicopter ride over the very active Kilaeua volcano.

 

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In the photo below, we can see gases escaping from a fumarole on the side of Kilaeua. We were able to fly nearby and peer down to see lava flowing below.

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At this point the lava was flowing below ground through lava tubes. These underground lava tunnels are formed when lava cools at the surface but stays liquid inside the tube. When the lava flow stops, long tubes are left. Below is a photo of an old lava tube now with access for tourists.

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When the lava flows out of the tube and into the sea, the seawater boils and steam rises. In the photo below, you can see steam rising as lava hits the water. Look carefully and you can see the yellow glow of the lava as it emerges from tubes at the water's edge near the centre top of the photo.

Have you ever wondered what happens to trees when lava flows above the ground and around trees? In the aerial photo below, you can see finger-like structures jutting above the ground. Lava had surrounded trees. The trees had burned away and hollow tubes were left to mark where trees had been.

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There are walks on Kilaeua. The photo below was taken on a walk. It shows a large caldera. Calderas are formed by the collapse of land following a volcanic eruption. Can you imagine it once being filled with hot glowing, bubbling magma?

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Now for some new photos I took today to show other volcano associated rocks from my collection. As lava cools, flows might crack or gases may be caught inside the cooled lava both leaving spaces. In time water carrying dissolved minerals can seep into the spaces, the water leaving the minerals behind as it evaporated. Here are some photos of what can result. These are photos of thunder eggs and geodes. While not all geodes (a geode is a rock with a space in it) are formed in association with volcanoes, these were.

The first photos show agate and quartz crystals, both forms of silicon dioxide (SiO2)...

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Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

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Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

The next one is a favourite. It is only about 10cm (4") across and shows amethyst crystals inside. Amethyst is a form of quartz.

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Now one last photo I had taken along a highway about eleven kilometres (about 7 miles) from my home. It is a rock cutting.

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Look at the coloured layers of rock. My area was, millions of years ago, a place with a number of volcanoes. Now imagine a massive volcanic eruption from beneath shattering these layers of rocks into small pieces (scree also known as talus). You can see why scree can have many colours. Scree is not only found in and around volcanoes like Mt. Tarawera, it can be found anywhere where small fragments of rock break away from larger rocks such as cliffs and mountains.

Isn’t geology interesting?  I hope you enjoyed looking at this collection of photos. 🙂

@RossMannell

Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia

 

2 Comments

To view Global Grade 3′s original post, click below…

Global Grade 3

The following photos were taken because if a promise in a comment I left.

Hello Global Grade 3,

I promised to photograph and share fossils in my rock collection so here they are. There is nothing too spectacular, not even a single dinosaur although I have something connected to them. You'll find some links on the names of the samples if you want to find out more.

Ammonite

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Ammonite this time it has been cut to show the inside,

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DInosaur coprolite from U.S.A.. Coprolites are fossilised animal droppings.

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Fossilised leaf. I gathered this at a rock fall. I found it when out hiking.

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Petrified wood.

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More petrified wood.

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 Trilobite

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 Trilobite

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Kauri wood. This is not a fossil. A kauri log was found in a swamp in New Zealand. It was tested and found to be around 44,500 years old but looks as though it was freshly cut. The quality of the wood and the lack of oxygen in the swampy waters probably protected it.

 

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Shell. This is also not a fossil. The shell was found in a quarry in South Australia. The rocks are thought to be about 30,000 years old.

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Another shell from the same rock deposit.

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Tree fossil. It seems to have come from rock about 220 million years old. If you can see the blacker colour on the front of this fossil, that's coal formed from the original tree. I suspect the tree was covered perhaps because of flood. In time the wood was replaced by minerals. You can see it's reasonably large.

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7 Comments

To see 4KM and 4KJ’s original post….

Natural Disaster Tagxedos

REMEMBER: I am not an expert and have to check much of the information below.  If I find any errors, I will correct them as needed.

Dear 4KM and 4KJ,

 Natural disasters are part of living on an active planet with an atmosphere.

What do I know about natural disasters?

Volcanoes, earthquakes, tsunamis and our  not so solid world…

Most of you know our world isn’t a solid ball. Here is a graphic showing the Earth's internal layers I prepared for you...

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The INNER and OUTER CORE

At its centre, the INNER CORE, it’s thought to be a solid iron-nickel core. The temperature is thought to be about the same as the surface of our sun.

Now, that’s very hot so should the iron-nickel inner core melt? It is solid because of pressure from the rest of the earth not allowing it to melt.

The OUTER CORE surrounds the INNER CORE.  It is liquid and very hot. It’s thought, like the INNER CORE, to be mostly iron. It’s thought to be very important to life on Earth. Movement of the liquid iron OUTER CORE causes Earth to have a magnetic field (like a magnet with a north and south pole). It’s this magnetic field which protects us from much of the sun’s solar wind (ionised gases). If it wasn’t there, we wouldn’t ne able to live on Earth’s surface without protective suits. With the core of Mars thought to be cold, Mars has little magnetic field and certainly not a whole planet one. We would need suits to protect us even though it is further from the sun than us.

 

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EXPERIMENT: Place a magnet underneath a piece of paper. Sprinkle on some iron filings. You will see the iron filings

The MANTLE

The MANTLE is the thickest layer in the Earth. It is solid but is at high temperature so there is movement over long periods of time as cooler material sinks and hotter material rises. You might already know about convection. You know hot air rises because it is lighter and cooler air falls because it is heavier. It’s the same with the rocks in the MANTLE.

OBSERVATION: Have you ever seen a lava lamp? As the wax in the lamp heats, it rises to the top of the lamp. When it cools it falls back down only to be heated and rise again. That is convection.

More about convection shortly.

The CRUST

This is the thin layer we live on. Think of an apple. It has a core, the delicious fleshy part  (like Earth’s MANTLE), and the skin (the CRUST). Like an apple, the Earth’s crust is thin and sits on the MANTLE.

OBSERVATION: Cut an apple in half and look at the cut surface. Imagine it’s the Earth. We live on the thin skin.

The convection (movement) in the MANTLE causes movement in the crust. The Earth’s crust has large sections called TECTONIC PLATES.

You can see a map of the Earth’s plates on Wikipedia at

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Plates_tect2_en.svg

The TECTONIC plates rub along each other, go over or under each other, or move apart. Now for natural disasters…

VOLCANOES

Most volcanoes in the world are found along the edges of the TECTONIC PLATES. Some, like the Hawaiian volcanoes, are over a HOT SPOT. Volcanoes are places where heat and pressure from the MANTLE can be released. There are many types of volcanoes. In Hawaii, you have lava flows whereas New Zealand’s volcanoes tend to be more ash and gases. No matter what type, eruptions can be very dangerous for people living close to volcanoes.

Here is a link to a post I made some time back for a class in England. It shows some You Tube volcanic activity…

http://rossmannellcomments.edublogs.org/2012/05/23/a-final-volcano-post-of-you-tube-links/

Here is another link to a post I made for the same class. It includes some video clips I made while in New Zealand.

http://rossmannellcomments.edublogs.org/2012/05/23/new-zealand/

In many areas of Australia, you can find the remains of volcanoes once very active millions of years ago. If you know what you’re looking for, they are easy to spot. Where I live, there are plenty of signs of ancient volcanic activity. Here is a photo of an easy to spot one in Queensland. It shows the solidified magma once in a volcano's crater....

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EARTHQUAKES

When the TECTONIC PLATES try to move, pressure can build up as they rub against each other. This can happen at the edges of the plates or along fault lines. Eventually, the pressure is too high and the plates or rocks in the fault move. This is an earthquake.

Here is a Wikipedia link to a photo of the San Andres fault in California…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Falla_de_San_Andr%C3%A9s.jpg

and to a graphic of the types of faults…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Fault_types.png

When there is tectonic movement, land can move up, down or sideways. Some quakes are small tremors where there is shaking but they can be large and cause much damage. Do you remember hearing about the earthquakes and aftershocks in Canterbury, New Zealand?

Look at the photo below. I took it at a roadside cutting near my town. See how the rock had been forced into curves by pressure. Have you seen layers of rock in unusual patterns? Do you think earthquakes or earth movements might have been the cause?

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EXPERIMENT: Place piece of cardboard on your desk. Now place a stone near the edge of a piece of cardboard. Lift the edge of the cardboard. For a time, friction will hold the rock in place but as you keep raising the edge of the cardboard and the angle increases, the stone will start to slip. For the rock, it was like a mini earthquake when it moved.

TSUNAMI

You might have heard about powerful waves called tsunamis. When you go to the beach and watch the waves, these are only surface waves. The water simply moves up and down close to the surface and is caused by the action of wind. If you’ve ever seen a fishing float in the water if you’ve gone fishing, you’ll see it moving up and down. It will only move along sideways if there is wind to blow it or flowing water underneath.

Tsunamis are very different to the normal waves you see. They are much deeper waves and can be caused by underwater earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, landslides or other disturbances including a meteorite impact in the ocean. When an event occurs, huge amounts of water is displaced (moved).

If you were out on the ocean, you mightn’t even notice a tsunami pass as it might look like any other wave but it goes much deeper than a normal wave. As a tsunami approaches shallower water, the deeper waves rise up and move in on the coast.

In 2004, there was an underwater earthquake near the island of Sumatra in Indonesia. A large amount of water was displaced and spread out across the Indian Ocean. With Sumatra being so close to the earthquake location, large waves washed ashore causing a huge amount of damage to the town of Banda Aceh.  The more distant from the site of the earthquake, the less the effect,

Here is a Wikipedia link to an aerial photo of Banda Aceh taken after the tsunami.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:US_Navy_050102-N-9593M-031_A_village_near_the_coast_of_Sumatra_lays_in_ruin_after_the_Tsunami_that_struck_South_East_Asia.jpg

OBSERVATION 1: Have you ever dropped a large rock into a still pool and seen water splash up and waves ripple out? This gives you the idea the way waves spread out from the point of origin.

OBSERVATION 2: When you fill your bathtub to the top then get in, what happens? This is water displacement as your body moves water away as you get in.

WOULD IT BE BETTER NOT TO HAVE SUCH AN ACTIVE EARTH?

If you remember, I’ve already explained our active, hot Earth protects us from much of the effects of the sun. If our Earth’s interior cooled and went solid, we might not have problems with earthquakes and volcanoes but we would be exposed to dangers from the sun. Earth might become more like Mars.

I think we are fortunate to have an active Earth even if it sometimes causes natural disasters.

If you are interested to find out more about natural disasters, The Australian Government Geoscience Australia website has information on (CLICK TO GO TO THE SITE)…

You can also check Wikipedia for information.

I had intended adding video of my helicopter ride over Hawaii. It showed lava flowing into the ocean as well as a view into a caldera at the lava below. Having had my trasnfer device break down, I though I would add some You Tube links of volcanic activity if it's okay for you all to view....

National Geographic also has a short video of their favourite photos of volcanic activity. There is an ad at the beginning.

I hope you all have had fun learning about volcanoes.

 

 

Just a reminder, I am not a volcanologist just a geology hobbiest. I try to get my information correct but you can let me know if you find any errors. 🙂

In the last post, I looked at hot spots. New Zealand's active thermal areas are different to Hawaii. New Zealand lies on the fault line caused by the interaction of the Australian and Pacific plates.

Wikipedia has information on plate tectonics

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plate_tectonics

Look at the image below from Google Earth or find New Zealand if you have now installed Google Earth. You can see the fault line to the south-west of New Zealand (bottom left corner). It runs across the South Island of New Zealand then off to the north-east.

Tension can build up as the plates move. When the tension is suddenly released, you get earthquakes. Near fault lines, you can find volcanoes and thermal areas such as in the North Island of New Zealand.

Below is an old image of Mt Ngauruhoe erupting well before you were all born. I think it was in the early 70s but I don't remember when. Mt Ngauruhoe is what I would call a classic volcanic cone shape and is really a part of the Mt Tongariro volcanic complex.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ngauruhoe

Mt Ngauruhoe is to be found in the Mt Tongariro National Park on the North Island of New Zealand. Mt Tongariro is volcanic complex including Mt Ngauruhoe. Below is a Google Earth image of the national park.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Tongariro

In 1995, I had been in Invercargill at the south end of New Zealand's South Island when I heard Mt Ruapehu (in the Tongariro National Park) was erupting. I wasn't able to book a flight north for a few days because of the dangers the erupting volcanic ash posed for planes. I caught one of the first flights north and went to pick up a rental car. I had to dust off the volcanic ash which had settled on the car before heading to the volcano.

On arriving at the national park, I wasn't able to travel too close but was on the lower slopes. It had settled down and was smoking constantly. I took some photos and video clips before leaving. Two days later I heard one person had managed to sneak through the police lines so he could stand on the rim of the volcano to watch the smoking crater. On arriving back down, the man was arrested. Later that day the volcano again became very active. An explosion destroyed the ledge the man had been on. Volcanoes are very dangerous when they are erupting. I always keep my distance when the warnings are out.

Below are two video clips I took on the day. The first is the original footage taken some kilometres from the volcano. The second has been accelerated to show the escaping smoke and ash.

PLEASE NOTE: The video clips in this post were taken when home video cameras were reasonably new. The quality is poor due to the early camera and the low quality Quicktime movies made back then.

This 2nd clip is only a few frames long. Once loaded keep clicking on play to see the movement not easy to see in the first video above. From a distance you can't always see much happening.

 

 

Rotorua and Its Thermal Sites

One of the most popular ares of the North Island of New Zealand is Rotorua. There are numerous thermal areas to visit as well as the nearby Mt Tarawera I mentioned in an earlier post. Here are a few photos.

Pohutu Geyser photos, Whakarewarewa

 

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Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

 

 

A video clip of the Lady Knox Geyser near Rotorua

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Hot Mud Pools, Whakarewarewa

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Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

A video clip of the boiling mud

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Thermal Water Pools (hot enough to boil an egg), Whakarewarewa

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Boiling Water Pool (Orakei Korako south of Rotorua)

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Whakarewarewa is a major tourist attraction in Rotorua. It is owned and run by the Maori people. As well as the thermal areas, there is a cultural centre where students learn the art of wood carving. Here are two carvings in my collection.

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For a Wiki link to Whakarewarewa http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whakarewarewa

Te Wairoa

The Buried village of Te Wairoa is near Rotorua. It lies to the west of Mt Tarawera near the shores of Lake Tarawera. You might remember I mentioned the 1886 eruption that made the scree sample I sent you.

The village was traditional Maori. On the morning of June 10, 1886, the people of the village were woken by the eruptiing Mt Tarawera. Ash and rock was thrown up into the air by the massive explosion. As the ash fell back to earth, the nearby village was covered. 120 people lost their lives in the eruption, many of them from this village. Below is one of the unearthed structures. Archeologists have uncovered a number of the structures of the village.

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