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Australian Geographic May - June 2015

Australian Geographic, Australia’s premier geographic journal, brings you the best of the country from those who know it best. Discover Australia’s rich cultural heritage, its beautiful landscapes, its unique and diverse plants and wildlife, and explore outback towns and the true-blue characters who call them home.

Australian Geographic Holdings Pty Ltd
R 96,04
R 264,32
6 Issues

in this issue

1 min

AUSTRALIANGEOGRAPHIC.COM.AU The content doesn’t end with this issue of the journal. You’ll find thousands more articles, images and videos online. Discover all the stories highlighted here at: australiangeographic.com.au/issue126 FREE Australian GEOGRAPHIC Sign up to the Australian Geographic email newsletter on our homepage and we’ll deliver fresh content to your inbox every week! X-RAY VISION: FISH INSIDE OUT An exhibition at the Australian National Maritime Museum features images captured with a radiographic machine. CHEAP AND EASY DESIGNER CORAL REEFS Designer Alex Goad has developed a Lego-style modular frame that speeds up the creation of artificial reefs. IMAGES OF AN UNDERWATER WORLD In the series Ten Below, photographer Stephen Bakalich-Murdoch explores the world that thrives just out of our sight. MOUSE PROTECTED BY DINGOES While the feral cats are away, the dusky hopping mice come out to play – thanks to the help of…

2 min
people power

A LESS THAN obvious outcome of the connectedness many of us enjoy with our smartphones is the ability of ordinary folk to contribute directly to scientific research. This connection encourages our curiosity, harnessing it for the advancement of knowledge. An army of amateur bird counters, stargazers and climate watchers has already been contributing to the official record for decades – and now, the accessibility offered by smartphones, apps and websites has mobilised a whole new generation of citizen scientists. We can all now record and share data instantly from our own backyards and beyond. For scientists, this can provide a reliable stream of information from a wide area, the likes of which they couldn’t hope to collect themselves. Encouraging people to participate in this manner also increases awareness and motivation to…

1 min

Tim Jarvis is an explorer, adventurer and scientist with an affinity for our planet’s polar regions. Among various other expeditions, he has re-created the adventures of both Mawson and Shackleton, and written books about these journeys. Tim was named the AGS Adventurer of the Year in 2013 for his Shackleton Epic. Passionate about climate change and biodiversity conservation, Tim has written an opinion piece for this issue on the need to protect the North and South poles. TAKE A STAND FOR THE POLES, PAGE 38 Rosemary Woodford Ganf was born in the UK. She moved to Australia in the mid-1970s and began dedicating her talents to documenting Australian wildlife. She paints and creates sculptures from wood and bronze, and her award-winning work is displayed in collections around the world. Previously, we have published her…

1 min
kings of the gods

NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft left Earth in 2006 on a 4.9-billion-kilometre, nine-year journey, which will culminate in its arrival at Pluto in July, giving us our first detailed look at this cold and distant dwarf planet (see pages 16 and 25). Although it was in a hurry, the probe did manage to do some work along the way, such as capturing this awe-inspiring image of the gas giant Jupiter and its moon Io, in February 2007. Jupiter is so vast that Earth could fit inside it 1321 times over. NASA/JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY APPLIED PHYSICS LABORATORY/SOUTHWEST RESEARCH INSTITUTE/GODDARD SPACE FLIGHT CENTRE…

2 min
destination pluto

WE’RE FINALLY ABOUT to pay our first visit to Pluto, the little world in the outback of the Solar System, about 5.9 billion kilometres from the Sun. Eighty-five years after the discovery of this enigmatic ‘dwarf’ planet, NASA’s New Horizons probe is set to glide by on 14 July (see page 25), giving us our first close-up views of its icy surface and family of moons. Here’s everything you need to know to prepare for this historic planetary encounter. Pluto was discovered in 1930 by Clyde Tombaugh at the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona. Pluto is about 2300km in width, similar to the distance from Perth to Adelaide. The average surface temperature on Pluto is –223°C to –233°C. ONE LONG YEAR Thirty to fifty times further from the Sun than Earth, Pluto takes 248 of…

3 min
protecting the night parrot

FOR NEARLY A CENTURY, all that had been seen of Australia’s most elusive bird, the night parrot, were fleeting glimpses – the occasional unconfirmed sighting, the odd dead specimen. That was until July 2013 when ornithologist John Young announced that a decade of scouring the spinifex clumps, gibber plains, caves, gullies and salt lakes of the outback had paid off . At a press conference held at the Queensland Museum, John revealed the first blurry images and a 17-second film clip of this exceptionally cryptic bird. “I know now from walking through their habitat that they are the most secretive thing I have ever seen in my life and certainly the hardest [species] I’ve ever worked on,” he said. John had found a small number of birds in south-western Queensland, at a…