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To see Global Grade 3's original post, click the link below

A Closer Look at MAPS!

Hello Global Grade 3,

I'll start by repeating the wonderful quote from Henry Miller at the beginning of you post...

The moment one gives close attention to any thing, even a blade of grass it becomes a mysterious, awesome, indescribably magnificent world in itself. 

~Henry Miller

I saw your post entitled "The Power of Observation and Wonder" and found it very interesting to read. I was going to write a reply because, as the previous Global Grade 3 class knows, I am interested in many things including stones but I have been very busy filming and making DVDs for schools. However, your "A Closer Look at MAPS!" post again caught my attention so I thought I'd write a short post about maps.

I have seen many types of maps including the types you have studied. Perhaps my favourite modern maps are the types I used as a Scout. I would say, "Give me a good map and a compass and I can usually find my way around."

I have scanned an old topographical map I used in the 1970s. It was measured in miles and feet but we were changing over to kilometres and metres around then. Have a look at the map. Click on it to see it larger...

This is a scanned section of Central Mapping Authority of N.S.W. topographical map printed in 1970. I do not hold copyright over this image.

This is a scanned section of Central Mapping Authority of N.S.W. topographical map printed in 1970. I do not hold copyright over this image.

The map has a great deal of information. I can see red lines showing roads. Some roads are shown as white with red dashes to show they are dirt roads. There are thick black lines with small, double dashes along them to show a railway line. Blues lines show rivers and creeks. We can easily see Blackheath is a town but there are large areas without streets and those areas interest me as I have explored those areas.

Can you see the brown wriggly lines on the map?

The brown lines are contour lines. They show heights. Each line shows a height of 50 feet more or less than the next. Some of the lines have numbers such as 3200.  The 3200 tells me at that place the land is 3200 feet above sea level. Looking at the numbers and the lines can tell me if I will be going up or down when hiking. Let's look closer at a section of the map...

This is a scanned section of Central Mapping Authority of N.S.W. topographical map printed in 1970. I do not hold copyright over this image.

This is a scanned section of Central Mapping Authority of N.S.W. topographical map printed in 1970. I do not hold copyright over this image.

I have added the red numbers to help students find specific points.

See the black, single dashed lines?

They are walking tracks I have followed. I have walked down from number 1 to 3 and up from 3 to 2.

1 - The beginning of the track is about 3250 feet above sea level.

2 - The end of the dirt road is about 3200 feet above sea level

3 - Beachamp Falls is about 2650 feet above sea level.

The map shows me if I walk down from 1 to 3, I will drop 600 feet. If I then walk up to 2, I will go up 550 feet. Because the brown lines are close together, I know the track will be steep in places.

Do you notice one section is named Grand Canyon?

It's not even close to the size of the Grand Canyon in U.S.A. but it is steep sided.

Let's look at some photos I had taken around 1980 in the Grand Canyon and at Beauchamp Falls.

Starting down the steep track from 1.

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.

We pass through a small tunnel and behind waterfalls.

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.

Deep down in the Grand Canyon.

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.

Until we reach Beauchamp Falls at 3.

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.

And now for two photos for your "The Power of Observation and Wonder" post. The photos show rocks that caught my eye but were left in place. They were in a national park so we are not allowed to take them. They were also far too big to carry.

The first shows a large sandstone rock.

Can you see the black mark?

It is the remains of a tree trunk buried under sand millions of years ago but now exposed after a rock fall. It is a fossil record of the tree.

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.

The second shows an even larger sandstone rock.

Do you notice the ripples on it?

Millions of years ago sand was rippled by flowing water. A thin layer of mud covered the ripples and in time left a fossil record of water running over sand.

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.

What is even more amazing is this sandstone was sand under the sea millions of years ago but it is now lying 2650 feet above sea level. These rocks of sandstone certainly caught my eye and the eyes of the children I had taken there as we thought of their long history.

When we then walk the 550 feet in height (but much longer along  track) back up to 2, this is what we see when looking north.

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.

...and now your interesting questions...

How long does it take to study a place and then make the map?

For early map makers, they might have to walk, ride or travel by ship in order to make maps so it could take a long time to make a map.

Back in August 1768, Captain James Cook set sail from England. He was taking scientists to Tahiti to observe Venus crossing the Sun. Once the scentists had finished their observations, Cook's orders were to sail south to find Terra Australis Incognita, the unknown southern land, some people thought must exist.

In September, 1769 he reached New Zealand and set about mapping its islands.

In April 1770, he reached a land he named New South Wales. It was really the east coast of Australia. He sailed north along the coast mapping as he went. Cook and his ship didn't return to England until 12th July, 1771. It had taken him and his crew three years to make the journey and return with the maps he had made.

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.

Today, with satellites, GPS and Google Earth, we can map the world from our own homes.

How many different kinds of maps are there?

Interesting question and makes me wonder what a map might be. We know most types but is a plan for a house a map? Is a design for a new machine a map? They also show where things are.

Are there maps about SPACE?

Now this is complicated. In your post , you noticed the maps you saw were two dimensional flat maps. In order to find a place on a map, you needed to know how far up or down and side to side a place is.

To accurately map space, we would need a three dimensional map and it would have to be huge because space is huge. Using computer models, there are space maps. Here is a link to a 3D space map animation representing 400,000 galaxies. Remember our Sun is just one star amongst possibly hundreds of billions in just one of those galaxies.

Amazing Universe Fly-Through

How do pilots use maps?

Have a look at this aviator's map. It's how a pilot might plot a course using information on their computer.

SkyVector Areonautical Maps

Of course, pilots in early days didn't have computers. They would look down to the ground and possibly follow roads or railways to their destination or they might use a compass so an old fashioned paper might might have helped.

Do we have maps for EVERYTHING?

WOW! Maps of everything? Even on our own Earth there are places no one has ever been so, for example, there are no accurate maps for some of the deepest places in our oceans. What about other planets, stars, galaxies? We may not have maps for everything but we do have maps of very many things but there is still so much more waiting for someone like you to map.

What jobs need maps?

Cartographers (map makers), pilots, sailors, explorers, delivery drivers, police, ambulance, fire fighters, tow truck drivers...   There would be so many jobs where we might need maps at some time.

How old is the OLDEST map?

A link if you want to see old maps....   Early World Maps

Look at these three maps...

These maps were sourced through Wikimedia Commons where they are listed as in the public domain.

These maps were sourced through Wikimedia Commons where they are listed as in the public domain.

The first shows the world as known by the Greeks perhaps 3000 years ago. It shows the Mediterranean Sea.

The 500 BC map from around 2500 years ago shows the Red Sea and the opening into the Atlantic Ocean.

By 150 AD Europe, parts of Africa, and Asia has appeared on the maps. Notice Terra Incognita at the bottom right of the map. It's what Captain Cook was sent to find or show wasn't there.

How many countries are there in the world?

Interesting... The United Nations has 193 countries as members. My blog has had visits from 193 countries and I have seen 196 listed as the number of independent countries in the world. Here is a link for you...

The Number of Countries in the World

Do maps ever change? (This one brought up some VERY interesting conversations around Bombay, Calgary, Nunavut and the NEW islands that VOLCANOES create!!!)

Maps have to change when what has been mapped changes.

Yes, volcanoes can create new islands.

1996 Hawaii Lava flow 01

You know about the big island of Hawaii. Did you know deep under the ocean around 30 kilometres south of The Big Ilsand there is a new volcano rising around 10,000 feet from the ocean floor with only about 3100 feet before it reaches the surface? If in the future it does break the surface, Hawaii will have a new Island.

The islands of Hawaii were formed in this way and will eventually erode into the ocean as many have already done over millions of years. Look at the Google Earth image below. The Hawaiian Islands are in the middle at the bottom. Look carefully and you can seen now submerged volcanoes moving off to the left  as you go north. They may once have been islands as is Hawaii.

Volcanic hotspots

When we have changes in the level of the sea, land also changes. In times of ice ages, sea levels can be much lower and expose more land. When the first people came to Australia around 30,000 years ago, they were able to walk from New Guinea into Australia and cross to Tasmania by land. Now you would need boats.

The opposite happens when sea levels rise. Some islands in our oceans are now underwater but were once above. It worries island nations in the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

Another country I find interesting is the Netherlands (Holland). Over generations, they have taken back land from the sea using dykes and sea walls. In the news recently there have been stories of islands being built by the Chinese government in the South China Sea.

And in your own part of the world, when new suburbs, roads, streets, airports, railways, etc are built, maps need to change.

Do maps ever change? They have to if they need to be accurate.

I'll end with a quote, not from some famous philosopher or writer but from a character in the movie, "Superman", released in 1978...

“Some people can read War and Peace and come away thinking it’s a simple adventure story. Others can read the ingredients on a chewing gum wrapper and unlock the secrets of the universe.” – Lex Luthor

Both your quote at the beginning and this at the end tell me the key to learning is to keep our minds and senses open to all around us for, if we do, we will begin to see our world and those beyond as containing mysterious, awesome and magnificent opportunites just waiting to be discovered.

OH DEAR!

At the beginning I said I'd write a short post about maps. I do get carried away when I see something as interesting as your posts. 🙂

1 Comment

This post was written as an extended comment for a student sharing a post on Memorial Day in the U.S.A. You can see her post by clicking...

Memorial Day: A National Holiday

Hello Mallory, Mrs. Yollis and class,

I found this post to be interesting as it shares a few things of interest to me. Looking at Memorial Day, Australia's equivalent would be ANZAC Day held each year on April 25. It's a day when Australians remember those men and women who have served our country in war.

Bega Soldier's Memorial

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

A Little ANZAC History

This year, 2015, held special significance for Australia and New Zealand because it marked the 100th anniversary of the day the ANZAC tradition began. Firstly, ANZAC is an acronym coming from Australian and New Zealand Army Corps. It's a word used to describe the combined forces sent by New Zealand and Australia to help England in World War 1 (WW1).

Australia had only become a nation in 1901 when the British colonies, now our states, agreed to form the Australian Commonwealth, i.e. Australia as a nation. With England's declaration of war against Germany in WW1, the Prime Ministers of Australia and New Zealand also declared they were at war with Germany. This was to be the first time Australians had gone to war as Australians.

Ships set sail from Australia and New Zealand with troops expecting to fight in Europe against Germany but a failed attempt to use naval strength to take the Ottoman Empire, and ally of Germany now known as Turkey, out of the war, ANZAC and other troops of the British Commonwealth were sent to the Gallipoli Peninsula then known as Çanakkale Savaşı to the Turkish. It was on April 25, 1915 ANZAC troops first landed at Gallipoli.

The Battle of Gallipoli (Çanakkale) lasted from April 25, 1915 until January 9, 1916 when British troops including the ANZACs withdrew from Gallipoli. There was huge numbers of soldiers killed on both sides of the battle where conditions were very poor for soldiers, many also dying of disease.

For the ANZACs, it may have been a defeat but it marked the beginning of a tradition. ANZAC Day each April 25 is a time when Australians and New Zealanders pause to remember those who have died in wars from that first battle up until modern times.

What did I do on ANZAC Day, 2015?

A few years back, I set myself a task of filming the ANZAC Day ceremonies in towns having one of the local schools in our Sapphire Coast Learning Community including 2 high schools and 13 primary (elementary) schools. I knew it was a task that would take a number of years as I didn't expect to finish until 2018. the 100th anniversary of the end of WW1.

My ANZAC Day this year started at 4:30 a.m.. I rose and headed down to the memorial in my town of Merimbula in order to set up a video camera to record what is known as the Dawn Service. The Dawn Service ended a little after 6:00 a.m.. I haven't as yet processed the video of The Dawn Service so I can't yet share it here but the photo below was taken during the service.

Merimbula Dawn Service

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.

After returning home for breakfast, I next headed into our main shire town of Bega for the ANZAC Day March and Ceremony. It was only after this ceremony my ANZAC Day ended. I returned home by 1:00 p.m..

Below are two video clips I made of the Bega ANZAC Day march and ceremony. They were used in a DVD I gave to schools in Bega and members of the R.S.L. (Returned Services League for veterans).

Bega ANZAC Day March and Ceremony part 1 and 2

Do I have anyone in my family who had served in the military?

Before WW1 started, I had a great uncle (my father's uncle) who was in the Australian Naval Reserve. With decelaration of war against Germany, naval reservists were called up and sailed north in order to capture Germany territories around New Guinea. That means my Great Uncle Ernie was in one of the first battles of World War 1.

Great Uncle Ernie taken in 1915

Permission should be sort before using this image.

Permission should be sort before using this image.

After taking over the German colonies, my great uncle had returned to Australia and had resigned from the naval reserve. He was later to join the Australian Army and was sent to fight in Europe. He was killed in action over there but exactly where he lies isn't certain. He was one of the many unknown soldiers.

With the coming of World War 2 (WW2), my father and five uncles joined the forces serving in the Australian Army, Royal Australian Navy and Royal Australian Air Force. All of my uncles survived that war and returned to Australia.

My father (left) and a friend in 1940 before leaving for Singapore.

Permission should be sort before using this image.

Permission should be sort before using this image.

My father had also returned but his fate in the war wasn't as "easy" as the others. He had been sent to defend Singapore from Japanese attack but, when Singapore surrendered to the Japanese, he spent most of the war as a Prisoner of War. He always marched in ANZAC Day marches. My brothers, mother and I would travel into Sydney to watch so ANZAC Day is also a day I remember my father who died back in 1967. My mother is a War Widow as it was determined my father had died as a result of his years as a P.O.W..

What else caught my interest in your post?

You mentioned you were a Girl Scout. I spent many years as a Cub Scout and Scout and eventually rose to earn the Queen's Scout Award (sort of like the Eagle Scout). As a scout, I had at times marched in ANZAC Day parades as a flag bearer. Scouting gave me a love for hiking and the outdoors that has stayed with me through life. Below is a photo of my Queen's Scout badge.

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

If the British Commonwealth has a king as it's head, this badge would be known as the King's Scout badge. My Queen's Scout badge was awarded to me by the then Governor of New South Wales, Sir Roden Cutler, back in the early 70s.

To see the fascinating original post on Arbor Day by Mrs. Ranney's class...

Astonishing Arbor Day - Then and Now!

Hello Mrs. Ranney and class,

I was fascinated by the tree photo you shared. Knowing exactly when a tree was planted and being able to see how much it has grown reminds us how change happens over time. For humans, 28 years would see us grow from newborn babies into adulthood and possibly as parents of a new generation.

Your tree, the silk floss tree, interested me because you shared it is related to the kapok tree. When I was young, our bed pillows were often filled with kapok fibres. Kapok pillows can still be bought and it's claimed "Kapok is resistant to mites, mold and mildew so its hygienic, non toxic, hypo allergenic and environmentally friendly." (taken from Kapok Pillows Australia website)

I know kapok was also an important resource around the time of World War II because it was used in life preservers but, when the Japanese captured the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia), a new source of fibres was needed. From some research, I found children in U.S.A. collected milkweed pods to use their "silk". If they had a forest of your silk floss trees, they would probably have used them. They might have been an important war resource.

 

When I noticed your silk floss tree was planted in 1986, I remembered an old photo I only today scanned into my computer. It was a photo I took in 1986 of a tree in New Zealand. Let me show you Tane Mahuta, the kauri tree...

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

Tane Mahuta, Lord of the Forest, is 13.77m (45.2 ft) around its base. In the photo, you can see its trunk is about the same size up to the branches. To the top of its branches,  it is 51.2m (168 ft) in height.

Was I around when it was first planted?

No. No one is sure how old the tree is but it is estimated to be anywhere from 1,250 to 2,500 years old.

If this old tree could speak, I wonder what stories of long ago it might share?

Tane Mahuta has a part in Maori cultural heritage. Here is a link to the story of Tane Mahuta...

Tāne Mahuta: separator of heaven and earth

To see the 2013 post where Keira left her comment and questions...

What Stone Is That?- A Follow Up Post for Keira

This photo was supplied by Mrs. Yollis and class.

This photo was supplied by Mrs. Yollis and class.

Hello Keira,

In one of your comments you mentioned you had a plethora of questions. A superabundance of questions is the sign of an inquiring mind. It seems as though your questions have turned from astronomy to geology. As before, your words will appear in bold blue text.

Since the day I found the rock that you mentioned in the post at a camping site, I have treasured it. Recently, I went camping at the same exact site, and I found many more rocks that seem to have some kind of beautiful mineral inside of it. In fact, I collected a rock that is made out of all gem. I am a little disappointed that in comments, you cannot post pictures with the text. If I could, I would take a picture of all the rocks I collected so you could see them for yourself.

You have discovered the reason this blog was formed. I also found comments on blogs generally couldn’t include photos, videos or sound and were limited to only one link. A blog allows it all providing we know about being safe online.

When I stumble upon an interesting rock, I tend to have the instinct to pick it up. I know that you probably have that same instinct too, because you are like a walking encyclopedia, always gathering up new information. I said this because I wanted to know if you have either found or bought any new rocks yet. I also want to know which one you most likely do to collect rocks: Do you buy them from rock sellers more often, or do you collect them on your own outside more?

While I have collected rocks in the field, I am unable to travel as much as I once had so these days I am more often to buy samples if I find them interesting. I have recently added some interesting stones. See if you find these samples interesting…

The first photo shows flourite (calcium flourine) crystals. The green mat they're on have 1cm squares so you can see their size. Each crystal has 8 facets (faces), i.e. they are octahedral crystals. They have not been cut. A collector was selling some of his samples at a local country show.

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.

In my area, different towns have markets on weekends. When visiting one, I found a man was selling geodes from Queensland. While I already had some, I was fascinated by this sample because it looks as though two fused together when they were formed perhaps 200 million years ago.

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

Here is one from my collection that has been broken open. They aren't as impressive as my Brazilian geodes but I like the Australian samples because they are from home.

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.

I have yet a few more questions to ask you. Have you ever found a rock from a volcano? I think it would be most likely that you have because, in one of your posts, you said that you had seen a few volcanoes erupt. If, a couple months later, you had gone down to examine the area near the volcano, and you found a interesting rock, I think you would have kept it and put it in your collection. I know that if I found one, I would definitely keep it.

When collecting any stones, we must be aware whether or not we are in national parks where we are not permitted to collect stones and rocks. There are places where you can collect stones, including igneous (volcanic) rocks. When I can, I have collected stones but I have also bought many.

My favourite item from a volcanic area in New Zealand was collected by me (with permission). It was collected near a fumarole where the sulphur (U.S. spelling: sulfur) crystals were forming. Because sulphur crystals break down and lose their shine if exposed to water or moist air, the below sample has been kept in a perspex box since I found it over 30 years ago. The crystals still shine as you can see.

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.

I have already written a number of posts on volcanoes. Below are links to some of the first posts written for this blog back in 2012...

Volcanoes Post 1

Scree and Obsidian

Aa and Pahoehoe from Hawaii

Pumice and New Zealand Iron Sands

Geological Hot Spots

New Zealand

Final Volcano Post

Another question is have you ever been in a cave where jewels were growing naturally? I asked that question because I heard on a science show that people can explore caves with jewels in them. I doubt that you have ever been in one, but I can not know for sure until you tell me the answer. If you have been in one, what kind of minerals did you see?

A cave of jewels… what a wonderful thought reminding me of the first time I saw the 7 dwarfs working in the jewel mine in Disney’s “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” when I was about your age. I dreamed of finding such a mine back then but I know finding a mine with gem quality stones is hard enough without expecting more than one type of gem. A diamond mine would be nice. 🙂

Below is an item in my collection measuring 5cm diameter across the top. Unfortunately, it is only a glass replica.

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.

I have been in gold mines, coal mines and a couple other mines but the closest to a jewel mine would have been an opal mine. There are mines all over the world where jewels are found, some very unsafe for the miners. I only enter mines welcoming visitors on guided tours.

Perhaps Australia’s most famous jewel mine is the Argyle Diamond Mine in Western Australia. It is an open cut mine where they dig down making valleys not dig tunnels.  Here is a link to their website.

Argyle Diamond Mine

You might know diamonds can be different colours other than clear. Argyle’s most famous colour is pink. Click on the link below to see some of the colours in Argyle diamonds…

Argyle Pink Diamonds

This is the last question I have before the last question I want to ask you. I want to ask you if you have ever mined any type of mineral. If so, what did you mine?

When out hunting for stones, I often have my geologists hammer with me. The pointy end is use to chip into rocks and the flat end to break rocks. You could say I have used this in mining in a small way. The picture is below…

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

I have also panned for gold in old gold fields and hunted for rocks, crystals and fossils in many locations.

Gold

Some of this sample has been panned by me. Much was bought.

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

I bought this sample of gold in quartz from a place called Hill End where there was an active gold mine. I have been in a mine in the area but not the active mine.

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

A gold nugget from New Zealand, it is about 1.5cm across.

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

Fossils

The two fossils below were found by me at a rock fall site many years ago. The first shows a fossilised leaf and the second is part of a fossilised tree trunk.

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.

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.

 In this sample I picked up, you can see shells in the stone. Rather than fossils, they are still real shells embedded in stone.

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.

I picked up the following shell embedded in rock from an open cut mine.

Shell 30,000 years old

Finally, I want to ask you if you have ever cut a rock open and discovered gems inside?

A gem is a stone used in jewellery so it can be anything from quartz to diamonds, emeralds and rubies. I have found quartz and amethyst in rocks as well as in rivers where they have been washed. Some of my stones are of gem quality but I have never found anything really valuable.

This quartz crystal sample might be of gem quality in part if it was cut but I like it as it is.

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.

As you said in your post, you do not have a diamond cutter, but have you ever used one? If so, was it hard to cut the stone open?

I have seen them used but I haven’t used one. It’s a skill to be able to cut a stone well. I have stones I collected so I could use them if I had access to a diamond saw. They are known as chert and are reasonably easy to cut and polish but aren’t worth much. My samples have colour bands through them so they might look good cut, shaped and polished into cabachons.

Diamonds are not made into cabachons nor are other gems such as emerald and rubies. They are faceted. This means they are cut and polished to have faces. Turquoise, agate and opal are examples of stone often made into cabachons. Look at the images of assorted cabachons below.

CABACHON SAMPLES

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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.

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.

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.

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

A diamond saw is used on most stones, diamond being the hardest stone we can find. It uses a special saw blade embedded with diamonds. Before you think this is a waste of diamonds, most diamonds found are not of gem quality. They are industrial quality. I have seen websites selling these low quality diamonds for as little as $120 to $180 per kilogram.

If you have never cut a stone open, would you ever like to cut one of your stones open?

While I would like to be able to cut my own stones, time to do so and the money to buy the equipment means this isn’t possible. I have broken open some samples to look inside but mostly I keep them as I found them. One of the problems with being interested in so many things is finding the time to do them all but it is fun doing what I can.

Keira also had questions on a geology post. Here are some possible answers...

Curious Keira Asked About Geology

1 Comment

Daniel had some wonders about emus. A simple answer wouldn't have allowed me to share the information I had…

Hi Ross! I liked how you wrote each of us a comment. Thank you for sending us the animal cards because we got more wonders. What did the emus evolve from and what is the tallest bird? I wonder how the real name of the emu is pronounced. How can you tell the difference between a male emu and a female emu? If you didn’t send us the cards, I wouldn’t know that emus swim! Which continent is Polynesia on? We are so lucky that we blog with you, Ross!

Daniel, what wonderful wonders!

As can sometimes happen, a comment can lead to a post so let's see if I can answer your questions. I like challenges. 🙂

Let's work backwards through your questions.

1. Which continent is Polynesia on?

Polynesia isn't a continent. It is a collection of over 1000 islands in the Pacific Ocean. It includes Hawaii in the north, Rapa Nui (Easter Island) in the east, Tonga in the west and New Zealand in the south-west. The traditional people of the islands are known as Polynesian. Having heard the Maoris of New Zealand speaking their language, I have also visited Hawaii. Despite the two sets of islands being so far apart, I was able to recognise words similar to each area.  Polynesians share similarities in culture and language.

As well as Polynesia, there are two other major Pacific island groups, Micronesia and Melanesia. Melanesia includes New Guinea to  the north of Australia. Australia isn't part of these groups as it is both the world's largest island and smallest continent. The many cultures of the traditional people of Australia are very different to Micronesians, Melanesians and Polynesians.

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

A Maori in traditional clothing.

2. What is the tallest bird?

The heaviest and tallest living birds are ostriches, native to Africa. They can weigh over 156kg and the males can be as tall as 2.8m. Next on the list are southern cassowaries found in northern Australia. Emus come along in 3rd place. The northern cassowary found in New Guinea comes in fourth. I have seen emus in the wild. I have only seen cassowaries and ostriches in zoos. Here is a Wikipedia link…

List of Largest Birds

When the Maoris first arrived in New Zealand (aka Aotearoa), they found a very large flightless native bird known as the moa. Look at the photo below of a reconstruction of the moa based on evidence from bones and fossils...

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

I photographed this moa in New Zealand's Auckland Museum. There were nine species of moas, this being one of the largest two. They could reach about 3.6m in height and weigh about 230kg.With the emus reaching up to only about 2m, the largest moas would have towered over them.

But these weren’t the largest known birds to have ever lived. Does a bird thought to be more than 3m tall and weighing around 400kg sound big? Here a link to an extinct giant bird…     Elephant Bird

3.How can you tell the difference between male and female emus?

emu (eem-you)

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes. This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.
This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

The most important answer to this question is the birds can but let's see what I can find to help us. By looking at the photo above, I can't tell the difference between the male and female emus. They look very alike but it seems they can sound different. Males can grunt a little like a pig and, if they're caring for chicks, can whistle to their chicks whereas females make a more booming sound.

When I look at emus, I try to imagine them featherless with teeth in their beaks. When I do this, I imagine something like a dinosaur. Look at the photo of a dinosaur skeleton I photographed when at a museum in London. It has a long tail and clawed upper arms whereas  emus have a short tail and stumpy wings we don't notice because of their feathers but there are similarities such as in their feet and the way they moved. I suspect the dinosaur was a fast runner and I know emus can run at up to 50 kilometres per hour as I have been driving a car and slowed to see how fast nearby emus were running.

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

 Of course, looking something alike doesn't mean they are alike. There can be similarities between very different animals simply because they need to do similar things so let's look at some ideas on the evolution of birds.

4. Where did emus evolve from?

The Evolution of Birds

For a long time people thought all of the dinosaurs died out with the great extinction caused by a large meteorite hitting Earth but we now believe this wasn’t completely so. We know the large dinosaurs couldn't survive the changes in the Earth but early mammals survived because they were small and fur covered. Fossils have shown this but what about the small dinosaurs?

I have seen information on two main types of dinosaurs...

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

No, I didn't take the dinosaur photo when I was young. In 1989, I visited a dinosaur display. 🙂

the sauropods (lizard-footed) including the largest dinosaurs (one is pictured above)…   Sauropods

and the ornithopods (bird-footed)...    Ornithopods

By their names, you might think we would be looking at ornithopods but it’s the sauropods I find most interesting, as it seems these dinosaurs include the ancestors of birds.

A type of sauropod dinosaur are the therapods (beast-footed)...     Therapods

Could some dinosaurs fly?

 Look at the photos I had taken when a "DInosaurs of China" collection visited Sydney in 1983...

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

This high quality fossil from China shows a winged reptile and the photo below shows a reconstruction of how they may have looked. These fliers weren't dinosaurs although many think of them as being dinosaurs. They were not the ancestors of birds.

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

We had no evidence dinosaurs had feathers until a very fine fossil was found in 1861, an archaeopteryx (are-key-op-ter-ix). Look closely at the photo below and you will see the fossil below is so fine you can see feathers yet it appears to have claws on its wings. This was not the fossil of a flying reptile. If the feathers hadn't been present, it would most likely to have been thought to be a small sauropod dinosaur. After the fossil was discovered, we could see a link between the dinosaurs and birds.

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

In  the photo below, you will see how the archaeopteryx might have looked. Fossils don't preserve colour so the colours are only guesses but sometimes ancient feathers have been discovered in amber and can show colour. Because feathers trapped in amber are rare, scientists can't test them without destroying them to find out more but they have been found to be very old feathers.

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

Since the discovery of the archaeopteryx, more examples of fossils appearing to have feathers have been found...

Feathered dinosaurs

Scroll down the link and you will see a diagram known as a cladogram. The diagram shows a clade. Clades show an ancestor and all of its descendants sort of like a family tree humans use to show their family. Notice the ancient ancestor starts with therapods and leads to birds?

All dinosaurs didn’t become extinct, some evolved into the birds we see today.

Do any modern birds have claws?

I once wondered if any modern birds had clawed wings and the answer was no until I read about the hoatzin of South America. The hoatzin is also known as the "stinkbird" which gives us the idea it is a little smelly.

What interested me was its chicks. The chicks have two claws on each wing to help them climb around the trees where they live but they are true birds and not left over from the dinosaur days. The young lose the claws as they become adults. Below is a photo of a hoatzin chick I found on Wikimedia Commons where it is listed as in the public domain.

This photo was sourced through WIkimedia Commons where it is listed as in the public domain.

This photo was sourced through WIkimedia Commons where it is listed as in the public domain.

The Evolution of the Emu

Science tends to classify birds into orders and into further groups within orders. For the emu, it is grouped with other ratites, or flightless birds including the ostrich, cassowary and New Zealand's moa and kiwi. In the link below, you will see another cladogram, this time of birds. The ratites come off very early on and are separate from all other birds so you could say they are closer to the first birds to have evolved.

Classification of Modern Bird Orders 

One last photo, this time a close up look at the emu's legs...

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

Emus are modern birds and not dinosaurs but, when I watch them walk, I can imagine them being dinosaurs striding or running across the land perhaps being chased by a carnivorous dinosaur. What do you think?

For Heather's original post...

Superior Strawberries

Hello Heather,

I think most of us see unusual things in our lives. Unusual means out of the ordinary so it could be something we wouldn't normally see or something we see in an unexpected place or way. I thought I would share a few photos.

The Photos

Some of the photos were taken 20 to 30 years ago. The photo quality isn't high because they were scanned from old colour slides and negatives.

1. If we look at a map of the world, we see the equator drawn around the middle. To the north and south are lines marked as tropics. In the north there is the Tropic of Cancer whereas the tropic to the south of the equator is the Tropic of Capricorn. Any island or nation in between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn are said to have a tropical climate. The Tropic of Capricorn passes through Australia's north. When driving a group of parents and children on a 6000km journey to Uluru in Australia's centre and back, we stopped when seeing this line paitned on the road at the Tropic of Capricorn. Some smart person thought it would be funny to write one side was hot and the other cold.

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

2. In the 1980s I was in New Zealand. I visited a church in Rotorua and saw this wonderfully engraved glass window showing the Moari Jesus walking on the outside lake.

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 This photo was taken many years back. The last time I visited the church, a sign asked visitors not to take photos inside the church

3. This photo was taken around 30 years again. There had been a storm in the late afternoon. The cloud patterns and colours were amazing.

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

4. I am not quite old enough to have seen real dinosaurs but this photo from about 25 years ago was of a robotic dinosaur looking very realistic as it moved. Can you imagine seeing a real one?

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

  5. I was once out photographing fungi such as mushrooms and toadstools when I saw a pattern of fungi on a tree. I added some eyes to make this face.

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

 6. While in Tasmania, Australia's only island state and the most southern state, I was on a river that looked more like a mirror surface.

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

 7. I was in England in a railway museum when I came across this platform sign. It had been used in the Harry Potter movies.

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

 8. Dragonflies can be very hard to photograph. They are quick fliers and are easily disturbed but one day while I was taking a break from hiking, this one landed beside me.

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

It's our unusual experiences in life that can make our lives interesting, exciting or perhaps even frightening. Being unusual, we don't know when they will happen. I wonder what will be my next?

8 Comments

For the Mr. Avery and Class "Our World Our Numbers post"...

Our World, Our Numbers on: Population and Area

Of Australia, Canada, United Kingdom, New Zealand and U.S.A., which country is largest by population density?

Seeing a post looking at people and land area, I wondered how the population densities of Australia, Canada, United Kingdom, New Zealand and U.S.A. might compare.

Population density is how many people there are for every square kilometre or mile of land area in a country. We take the population of a country and divide by the land area.

Which country has the highest population density?

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The United Kingdom

Let's look at the order of the countries according to the information I used to find the answer.

Area

1. U.S.A.   (9,826,675 square kilometres)

2. Canada   (9,984,670 square kilometres)

3. Australia   (7,692,024 square kilometres)

4. New Zealand   (268,680 square kilometres)

5. United Kingdom   (243,610 square kilometres)

Population

1. U.S.A.   (314,000,000)

2. United Kingdom   (62,640,000)

3. Canada   (34,480,000)

4. Australia   (23,000,000)

5. New Zealand   (4,466,424)

Population Density

1. United Kingdom   (257.13 people per square kilometres)

2. U.S.A.   (31.95 people per square kilometres)

3. New Zealand   (16.62 people per square kilometres)

4. Canada   (3.45 people per square kilometres)

5. Australia   (2.99 people per square kilometres)

I was asked to supply a chart (graph). This column graph has been inserted to show relative population densities, including Japan mentioned in the comment section.

.

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Can you see the smallest country by area has the highest population density? (N.B. Adding Japan changed this slightly as it became the third smallest country by area yet had the highest population density.)

We must remember, when looking at Canada and Australia and their low population densities, Canada has large parts of the country in Arctic regions and Australia has large areas of desert. Below is a link I made comparing Great Britain and Australia. It gives information about Australia and its land.

http://rossmannellcomments.edublogs.org/2013/05/06/great-britain-and-australia-compared-for-our-world-our-numbers/

 

 

 

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

6 Comments

Dear Emily,

Thank you for your comment. So I can share some more photos (I like sharing photos and graphics of mine when I can), I found it easier to put together another post.

Schools and students have permission to use the photos in this post for non-commercial purpose. This means you can, if you wish, copy any photos for use in school work.

You asked, "What is the building in the first picture?"

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Here is the photo again. The building is the Sydney Opera House and stands on Sydney Harbour not far from the famous Sydney Harbour Bridge. This photo had been taken by my brother.

The bay behind the yacht is known as Sydney Cove. It's where the first convicts sent from England in 1788 established a colony and was the beginning of European people in Australia. It wasn't until 1901 Australia became a nation, much later the the U.S.A.'s 1776. In fact, I believe the American Revolution was what made England look towards Australia as a colony so, in a way, U.S.A.'s independence from England helped establish Australia. Did you know our countries may be linked in this way?

This photo is the most recent I have but I'll share a few more I have taken over the years before we had digital photography, i.e. the photos aren't always as clear.

 

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This is my earliest photo of Sydney Opera House. I took it back in 1967 when I was a teenager and they hadn't finished building it. It was taken from the top of what was then one of the tallest buildings in Sydney but today would only be thought of as average.

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In 1988 Australia remembered the founding of the first colony of convicts sent here by England in 1788. There was a large party on the harbour with many thousands of people although the local Aboriginal (Koorie) people remember it as a time when their way of life around Sydney began to be lost. This photo was taken on the day of the celebration.

My first known relative arrived on the second fleet of ships, arriving in 1789. He was a convict named John Tucker. My last known close relative to have come from overseas was my Great Great Grandfather who arrived with his family from Scotland in the 1840s. His name was Robert Spence.

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Back in 1989, a pilot friend of mine took me on a flight up Sydney Harbour. In this photo, taken through the window of the small plane, you can see Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge.

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This photo across the harbour to the Opera House and Harbour Bridge was taken from the north side of the harbour while I was in Sydney's Taronga Zoo.

Now a final close up view of Sydney Harbour Bridge care of another recent photo by my brother.

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You also asked, " How did you get the pictures under water? Scuba diving? Snorkeling?"

Here is the photo again...

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While I have been snorkeling, I've never owned a camera capable of being used underwater. Checking my photo library, the only photos I had were really taken in Milford Sound, New Zealand. You will see under the photo in my first post for you I said I had to cheat a little and use a New Zealand photo. Milford Sound has an underwater observatory where visitors can see the marine creatures living in the Milford Sound waters without visitors needing to get wet. Below is a picture of Milford Sound I took in 1999. As you can see, it's a beautiful place.

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Keep blogging, Emily. 🙂

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

2 Comments

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. 🙂