7:56 pm monday 1st december 2008
today it's all just my random thoughts and ideas. Sometimes I need somewhere to write everything down and get it out of my head. I'd rather my diary but my hands are awfully sore right now, and I fear I am rather lazy tonight.
i am in love with andrew bird, an indie/alt/experimental artist who creates the most melodic sounds with a violin, harp, harmonica and obviously guitar. His twisted lyrics about everything and nothing have really inspired my lately, as he has a different tune to everyone else in his 'categorys', he has his own individualism. I reccomend you to listen to him on myspace, exspecially his songs 'Fake Palindromes' and 'Sovay'. Listening to him reminds me of fremantle, of birds, of bubushka dolls, of colours, of quiet tinkling streams in old forests, of golden sunlight upon bright green leaves, of cool breezes, of gliding effortlssly underwater and of harmony and peace.
i cannot wait to go to margaret river in january. it will be absolutely amazing, 2 weeks of sunshine, the ocean, beach hair, snoozing in the afternoons, going to lunch at the berry farm and the nookery, early morning swimming, late night walks, surf school, exploration of the caravan trails, heading to north head and august for late night fish's, my favourite store, seeing kuda again and galloping through national parks, watching out for kangaroos late at night, snorkeling in gnarabup, flushing out rabbits, and just relaxing. it is possibly the most amazing place on earth and i just love to be there. prevelly's quaint worn old beach shacks, with utes parked outside, surf boards on the back, dogs wandering around, the empty beaches, the friendly sea gardens baskpackers, and its wonderful atmosphere.
i cant wait.
As humans, we have the ability and the power to move certain species to different environments for our own benefits. Over the years, our idiocy and greed has caused certain breeds of animal to be introduced into a non-native climate, causing more problems than we began with. As early as the eighteen hundreds, possibly earlier, travelers and sailors have introduced different species to their destinations either by accident, or deliberately, for different reasons. Most of the time we did not pause to consider the environment and economic impact this could have on the future of the land, or upon ourselves. Introducing different species to different environments can disrupt the food chain, contribute to native species loss and can wipe out previously grown plants or crops. They can wreak havoc upon native animals and cost our governments millions to try and stop, before they become out of control. Non-Native species have caused many problems for governments around the world as it takes resources and funding to eliminate these pests once they have taken root. Although some animals are introduced naturally, by being swept by tides and currents or blow by gales to different locations, Humans have sped up this process by introducing multiple animals so that they can breed together and create a start for that species in its new home.
Some of the best examples of the destruction of introduced species are found on island ecosystems. After breaking away from whichever land mass they came from thousands of years ago, Islands have unique ecosystems that have possibly developed a different food chain and different species than its nearby mainland. Introducing predators onto these Islands can wipeout native species that previously had no predators, and had evolved to have no defense mechanisms. Subsequently, this can also happen to plants. Once these unique plants are gone, the animals that depend on them as their food source die out. An example of an introduced species on an Island is the common rat to New Zealand by Europeans during the 1850’s. The rat was brought accidentally aboard boats in the first years of settlement, and had a devastating impact upon the native bird life, as almost all of New Zealand’s native birds are flightless. As a result of the rat and the later introduced cat, the Stephen’s island wren and many other native birds are extinct. But not all introduced species are introduced accidentally. Many species have been introduced purposely by humans to benefit our society, but very few have been successful.
In 1940 the Cane Toad was introduced into the Queensland cane fields to help control the native Cane Beetle that was costing farmers millions each year. Native to America, the Cane Toad was a natural predator of another cane beetle similair to the Australian beetle, so it was introduced to the Australian ecosystem to help combat the cane farmers worst enemy. They multiplied rapidly, and in forty years had covered the whole of Queensland and were rapidly headed north. Because of the Cane Toads poison, it is now responsible for the deaths of many native small mammals, birds and reptiles who try to either eat the Toad, its tadpoles or its eggs. The toad is also a carrier of many viruses and diseases that cause havoc to our biodiversity. This animal was introduced on purpose to try and stop the cane beetle, but it has instead damaged our environment and the animals in it, and become an unwanted pest. Humans and humans only, are causing these problems by introducing species that will play havoc with the already existing ecosystem, so it is only right that we are the ones to fix these problems.
The solutions to these problems lie within each countries willingness to adapt and change. Introducing species purposely needs to be a careful consideration by many experts in various fields, such as environmentalists, ecologists, . If Australia were to do something like introducing the Cane Toad again, there should be steps created to allow for planning and various scientific experiments. All concepts should be taken into consideration such as how quickly does this animal breed, what it eats/what eats it, what impacts it could have on our environment etc. We should also draw on the past and look to examples of similair introduced species in different countries. Even though their climate may be somewhat different to ours, scientists can look at results of the animal and the pest to see whether introducing this species will actually have an effect. Animals can be successfully introduced if thorough research is conducted. An example would be Chaetorellia acrolophi, a small fly introduced into North America for weed biocontrol in 1996. This fly has successfully reduced numbers of a tall and pesky weed that was poisonous to most Native American mammals aswell as agricultural livestock. Scientists and environmental researchers took 4 years to complete studies and a further 2 for tests before stating the introduction of the fly would have minimal damage to the environment and would successfully help reduce weed numbers.
Animals that are accidentally introduced are harder to contain as most of the time we are unaware of them. Prevention is difficult because we need transport such as boats, cars, trucks and airplanes in which some introduced species hitchhike. Prevention however is more economical than treating the problems caused by animals that manage to evade our protective barriers and quarantine. Australia’s quarantine standards are extremely strict and very little gets past it. Interstate prevention is a little less strict, and I believe that is where the problem lies. Cane Toads in particular have been found in the backs of trucks in banana boxes in WA, aswell as in aeroplanes shipping food from the eastern states and Queensland. Measures should be tightened so that this does not happen. If boxes were searched before leaving the farm, whilst at the airport and once again when arriving in their destination this decreases the risk of finding an unwanted animal amongst the crop. This could also create more jobs, which in turn benefits the economy, as more people are working, and less money will be spent on having to eliminate pests once they take hold.
Many Introduced Species are either accidentally, or purposely, introduced into non-native habitats each year. Many of these species have devastating effects upon the native environment and its inhabiting creatures, by either eliminating food sources, preying on them or poisoning them. It is up to us to stop to think the consequences of introducing a species to the environment, and up to us to stop them hitchhiking across borders and through the air. Nature has its own cycle and its own order, but if we mess this up, and it cannot cope, it is up to us to put it right.
Mining History to Uncover Factors that Build a Sustainable Society.
The dictionary defines sustainable as the same idea worded many different times, to suit what it refers to. The suited to the idea of a “sustainable society” is “to supply with food, drink and other necessities to life.” A sustainable society is one that persists at problems, strives to make their world a better place for its people, and provides a high quality of life for them without harming its resources and ecosystem. They must have a quality government that can perform and can adapt, aswell as positive relationships with countries surrounding them, for trade and war purposes. Therefore it must socially, economically and ecologically stable. This will create a sustainable society.
Throughout history there have been mountains of societies, whether sustainable or unsustainable. So what creates a sustainable society, and how do we define one? I have created a model that represents my idea of a sustainable society, using my hypotheses, which in turn has been created using and gathering ideas from other hypotheses and ideas from other people’s research. The model is made up of many factors that all in turn contribute to a sustainable society.
Factor #1 – GOVERNMENTS ABILITY TO PERFORM
This heading is subdivided into three sections.
If a government is transparent it means that the society that has chosen it is able to see the government’s decisions, and that the government is open about everything it does, not hidden away and the community knows what is going on. This means that they are responsible for their actions, and the people can see what is really going on, and have a say in it.
A sustainable society cannot run if there is corruption in its government. Corruption may be a member of their parliament that is not abiding by their laws, is not part of the government because he has the people’s best interests at heart, or is using his power to change things he wants for himself or to abuse their law system.
The government’s ability to make decisions is a crucial element in a sustainable society. The government must be able to decide what it will do based of the circumstances, and the people’s best interests. Making rash decisions, decisions without the people’s best interests, or decisions to suit just the government will not help the society to remain sustainable.
An example of a good government would have to be England, during the Elizabethan period. During this time, the protestant/catholic divide was settled, for a time, by Elizabethan religious settlement and the parliament was a centralized, well-organized and effective government, headed by Queen Elizabeth I and the country began to benefit. This era is widely known as the ‘golden age’ because of the happy and quiet period in history it was, without major conflicts.
Factor #2 – GOVERNMENTS ABILITY TO ADAPT
A government that cannot adapt to changes going on around them, in their environment, or in their society, whether it is social or economical, will not help its country to be sustainable for long. The government must be able to change its views, and its actions to suit the changes that occur within or around them. An example of this would be global warming, for the society to remain sustainable; they must change their actions to save their environment. This problem is currently happening to our earth and our societies, and without serious action soon, we will destroy our societies. And example of adaptation by the government to help their country is President Roosevelt and his government during the great depression in the USA. Without his actions during this time, America my have plummeted and destroyed its society. He created the ‘new deal’ to provide relief for the unemployed, recovery of the economy, and to reform the banking and economic systems. The great depression was associated with the stock market crash on October 29th 1929 and caused unemployment and bankruptcy in a lot of families and companies across America. Fortunately, Roosevelt and his government quickly adapted to these changes, helping sustain their society.
FACTOR #3 – CARE OF FOOD AND WATER SOURCES
There are four sub-divisions in this section.
Care of Food
The society must take care of their food sources, because without them, they are unable to survive. The food cultivated must be able to feed the entire community and must be good enough to give them the energy that they would use for other necessities, such as labor. An example of this would be the Incas of South America. The were highly religious, and never took more than they needed with food and water, therefore never no species were ever wiped out or numbers dwindled, ensuring they did not disturb their environment, or help destroy it. A good example of a community that was careful about its survival of its food was the Ancient Egyptians. They had incredibly civilized water distribution systems to get water to their crops from the river Nile to their dusty paddocks. Later, they also devised ways too save water for the dry season, in the form of reservoirs. During this period, they were very careful in what they distributed the water too, growing hardier crops that would survive better in that climate, in order to preserve the water, and see that it lasted the whole of the dry season, enabling them too keep their crops alive the entire time, thus feeding their community.
Care of Water
This is similair too care of food; a society must look after its water sources as water is an essential part of survival. Without sufficient water to provide for their community, they will die of thirst. A good example of water management is Canada. Although Canada’s surface water and underground water are in abundance, it is susceptible to contamination. Their Government has been working hard to ensure the quality of this water, with the building of treatment plants to ensure their water is drinkable and useable. An example of un-cared for water is in Africa, especially the poorer parts, such as Sudan. They may not have much water, but what they do have is contaminated, and unfit for drinking. A lot of the water is full of disease, and many people die each year from drinking this water, as it is the only water that they have.
Waste management is an important factor in keeping the society’s ecosystem healthy. If the waste is not disposed of correctly, it can harm the environment they live in, and contaminate it. If it is disposed off correctly, it usually has no side effects. Since the 1970’s, Iceland has made considerable progress in its waste management. Previously, their methods was to have open pit burning, which created a lot of smoke, and in the whole entire country, only had one landfill, whilst having 55 open pit burning sites. By the 1990’s they had realized the side effects of open pit burning, such as haze and thick smog, and that they could prevent this. The Government has now replaced open pit burning with more landfills, co-operative treatment facilities and 6 incinerators in the more built up areas. New laws were also introduced, which will not let you open burn waste whatsoever, helping to keep their environment clean.
If your environment is dirty, uncared for or even destroyed, you will not be able to grow crops, and your drinking water may be contaminated. If you deforest your land, salinity may also occur. It is important to care for your surroundings, as they help you survive. Germany is a good example of care for their environment. During the late 1970’s Germany had major problems with acid rain, which is caused by human emissions of sulfur and nitrogen compounds into the atmosphere. Acid rain basically kills the forests, and high altitude ones are especially at risk because the cloud and smog that are closer too them, and are more acidic than most. Germany is trying to combat these problems by introducing laws to reduce these emissions into its atmosphere, as acid rain is also damaging to human health. An example of a country that did not look after its forests is Haiti. They started to deforest their land to sell as timber, and deforested the entire half of their island. They are now incredibly poor, and still deforesting their land for agriculture. This has damaged their ecosystem, encouraged salinity, and destroyed any natural shelter.
FACTOR #4 – POSITIVE TRADE RELATIONS
A society cannot possibly manufacture absolutely everything it needs, eg, cotton, which only grows in certain climates. Having positive trade relations with other countries helps the communities gather other necessities they may need or want. A country with excellent trade relationships is China. China exports and imports too many countries, and is able to import things that they may not be able to grow or mine enough of themselves. An example of this would be gas and coal. These are in such demand in china, that they import over 70% of their gas and oil from other countries. If china did not have great trade relations with other countries, they wouldn’t be able to get enough of oil or gas to help run their communities. In return, it exports billions of tons of items every year, which creates a lot of money for their country.
FACTOR #5 – WEAKER ENEMIES AND STRONG ALLIES
A country that has weaker enemies than itself should be able to withstand invasion, helping its society to survive, or if invaded, have strong allies that would help them fight. If a society is invaded, they stand the possibility of being completely wiped out, either by disease or weaponry, or being held as slaves. Therefore it helps a society to be surrounded by weaker countries, have weaker enemies, or have great relationships with other, stronger countries. A good example of a country with weaker enemies and strong allies is Australia. Our allies include two countries with the two of the biggest armies, America and the UK. We do not have any predominant enemies, yet if anyone tried to invade us, we would two huge armies to help us out. We are also surrounded by weaker countries, such as Papa New Guinea, Indonesia, and New Zealand, which we have mutual friendships with, but if they did decide to turn against us, we would be able to over power them.
FACTOR #6 – CULTURAL BELIEFS
Cultural beliefs can make or break a sustainable society. A society’s cultural belief may be an asset to them, or it may be their death. To portray this we must look at both the ancient Incas and the Greenland Norse. The Incas were a highly religious group that lived in South America. They were incredibly environment aware, and one of their beliefs (as mentioned before in care of food and water sources: care of food) was to never take more food than they needed at that point in time. This helped to ensure they never fully wiped out a species of animal or plant, or over hunted an animal, helping to keep their ecosystem in balance. This cultural belief was an asset to them. The Greenland Norse weren’t so lucky. With the introduction of animals such as cows, sheep and horses, to Greenland, the land was stripped of natural vegetation, and the climate did not allow for quick regrowth of plants. These animals died, and the Norse had less supply of meat. There was plentiful meat in the oceans, but the Greenland Norse’s beliefs meant they could not eat marine animals. They had less and less food until they eventually starved to death, whilst an abundance of food splashed around them. If they had not had this belief they may have survived. If they had adapted to their beliefs to their environment, they would not have died out. Therefore a sustainable society must be able to adapt their cultural beliefs to their situation, or another event may occur in similarity to the Greenland Norse’s situation.
In conclusion, a sustainable society is made up of six main factors. These are the government’s ability to perform, their ability to adapt, the societies care of food and water sources, positive trade relations, weaker enemies and stronger allies, and their cultural beliefs. If a society can be successful in almost all of these aspects, then the society stands a good chance of become a "Sustainable Society". We as one big community on earth in 2008 are going the wrong way. If we apply this model to ourselves you can see that we are not taking care of our environment, we have global warming, we do not have strong governments that are making the right decisions, and we are fighting amongst ourselves, eg. Iraq, Tibet, Sudan, Indonesia. If we continue to go this way, who knows where we may end up? We may become like Germany, who have realized their problems and started to change for the better, or we may end up like the Greenland Norse, completely extinct. We must learn from past mistakes and adapt to the problems we have caused ourselves, or our time may just be running out.
“Franklin D. Roosevelt”, , Wikipedia,
“A Definition of a Sustainable society”, [No date], Kirvil Skinnarland,
“Ancient Egyptians Water Systems”, , Charles Lugor Leju,
“Canada’s Water Management”, , Canada’s Department of Water Management,
“Iceland’s waste management system”, , Umhverfisstofnun™,
“Elizabethan period - The Golden Age”, , Wikipedia,
“Emerging Markets: China’s Future Oil and Gas Strategy to 2020”, , Emerging Markets Online,
“Why the Greenland Norse Collapsed”, , Kate Duff
With thanks too Mr Hanna for explaining about some societies, such as the Incas.
A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY: HYPOTHESES
Im not sure if we have to post this, but I shall anyway :)dont copy it or wite it up as your own, go actually use your brain and figure it out for yourself.
The dictionary defines Sustainable as the same idea worded many different times, to suit what it refers to. The suited to the idea of a “Sustainable Society” is “to supply with food, drink and other necessities to life.” A sustainable society is one that persists at problems, strives to make their world a better place for its people, and provides a high quality of life for them without harming its resources and ecosystem. They must have a quality government that can perform and can adapt, aswell as positive relationships with countries surrounding them, for trade and war purposes. Therefore it must be socially, economically and ecologically stable. This will create a sustainable society.
You know, you cant really go through school without having self-estyeem issues, theres so much presuure to have your hair the right way, to wear the right shoes, to say the right thing. People say "Oh yeah, our school totally isnt like that" or "I never put people down for having the wrong thing" and you may believe that you dont, but wihtout realising you do.
Certain kids who have certain power (aka popularity) dont realise that they put down people who are below them in the 'social ladder' and they mean most of it as jokes. They dont realise how hard most of the kids below them take it, or how hurtful it can be for them.
that why its st00pid to be a teenager at school.
+ i hope they read this,
actually if they do they wont a) be able to get it through their thick skulls b) think im a total bitch (sorry mr hanna) c) think im a paranoid freak whom needs a life or d) think im jealous (of which i probabaly am)
Easter Island, or Rapa Nui in the local language, is a small island located west of the South American coast in the South Pacific Ocean. Easter Islanders are said too have come from other islands in the Pacific around 1200 years ago. When it was first settled, the islanders found a lush island, filled with giant palms and rich volcanic soil, which they used to make boats and farm. The plants they brought with them did very well in the volcanic soils and by AD 1550 population on the island hit between 7000 and 9000. Though their resources must of felt inexhaustible. They continued too destroy their way of life. As their culture lay in disarray a new force entered the scene, one which would deny the world of ever seeing the Rapa Nui’s real culture. The Missionaries arrived in Easter island whilst the Rapa Nui were in their most vulnerable state, and it did not take long before they were converted to Christianity and they were stripped of their previous culture. Eventually all Pure Rapa Nui blood died out. Was it only the destruction of their resources that caused the collapse of what was a complex yet happy society?
Jared Diamonds five point framework gives us a way to class societal collapse. His framework includes environmental damages, hostile neighbors, and loss of friendly trade partners, climate change and response to crisis. This helps us to understand how and why Easter Island collapsed.
This was a major for Easter Island. The islanders forested almost everything on the island, leaving no trees what so ever. Also when they made their giant statues, they took all the top rock off, and the soil beneath was eroded with high winds and rain. They also used their water sources without care, as there were limited amounts of water supply on the island.
Depending on your view of them, the missionaries could be seen as hostile neighbors. They did not fight with the Easter islanders, yet tales and myths of horrific things happening when they did not convert to god may or may not be true.
There are various accounts of English pirates, and Spanish that may have arrived before the missionaries. Ancient Spanish artifacts have been found on the island, and believe to have been ‘gifts’ to the Easter islanders. The English pirates though, are thought too have culled numbers of Easter islanders with superior weaponry and take off with food and other resources.
Slave raiders were thought too have come to the island also and left with huge amounts of Easter islanders as slaves.
LOSS OF FRIENDLY TRADE PARTNERS
The Easter Islanders did not have any definite trade partners yet they supposedly did visit, and had visits from Tahiti and its people at various stages. They could definitely have traded whilst these visits occurred, but no known record of a fall out between the two islands was ever recorded.
Around 1700 AD, the started too become only slightly hotter, resulting in less rainfall on the island. This was also when the island was incredibly populated. This hinged on the water supply as Easter island is not exactly ‘huge’.
RESPONSE TO COLLAPSE
This is a Major one. The Easter islanders must have known when they depleted their resources that they would not be able too stay on the island for much longer. They has no shelter, no timber, and their island was eroding, loosing good crop growing topsoils, and making it possible they may be swept over by giant waves in freak storms. Nothing was ever found to suggest they had realized what was happening, or if they did, that they ever tried to rectify their huge problems. The lack of resources saw what was left vied for, and much warfare was created.
There is also one other contributing factor that does not belong in any of these categories, and this is where Jared Diamond has failed. In the late 1800 AD, European visitors came too the island and brought smallpox and tuberlicosis. These diseases were unknown to the islanders, and their immune systems could not fight them. Thousands of islanders died and the population was diminished to almost half.
Joseph Tainter is another historian that is interested in the collapse of ancient societies. This historian believes that societies become more complex as they try too work through any problems that are created. He also has a framework in which he thinks works for all societal collapse. His framework includes three points which are explained below.
Tainter’s first category is The Dinosaur. This is basically a large society that is readily depleting its resources but nothing is done to rectify the problem because the leaders of the society are unable to adapt too any change. This largely applies to Easter Island. They were quickly loosing sight of any way of change as time went on; they continued to de-forest their island, destroy topsoil which was needed for sufficient crop growth, and waste their precious water, all needed for the continuance of their culture.
Tainter’s Runaway Train theory explains how he believes that a society that is based almost solely upon gain and becoming bigger cannot be sustained. This is evident in the Easter island story – The religious carved stone statues called the moai, were incredibly important to the Easter islanders. The faster they became efficient at producing these 30-60ft solid stone statues, the more were created. Tainter believes that most ancient societies were based upon the idea that growth was a more prosperous future, but it did not always lead to so. The societies became too big to handle, and collapsed.
HOUSE OF CARDS
The House of cards is the last theory of Tainter’s model. It basically involved the society becoming too large with too many complex institutions that it collapses. Easter island has a frail environment because of its isolation. Deforestation led too no wood for fires/boats/hunting tools, and caused soil erosion. Warfare broke out over what was left – possibly killing or wounding each other. Diseases brought by foreign visitors left the island in disarray, halving the population. Together all these events caused to collapse of the Rapa Nui.
I believe for Easter Island, that Joseph Tainter’s model work just as well, if not better, than Jared Diamonds. It allows for more, such as disease, that Diamond’s does not, and is a different framework. Diamond’s outlines the reasons and causes of collapse. Tainter’s outlines the stages of collapse, and what happens in these stages.
“what can contemporary society learn from the collapse of this past society?”
Comparing what has happened in these cultures to what is happening in our world today can prepare us for what might come. For example Tainter’s idea the Runaway train is about the wants and needs to gain and grow, then become too big and collapse. At the moment in the world, it is human nature to ‘want’ things. With expensive toys and new technologies build everyday, we are overindulged. But this can lead too new and dangerous things discovered, such as nuclear weapons. The House of Cards theory is also relevant too today. In the more fertile parts of the world, we are highly over-populated, as these areas are the ‘deal’ places too live, with good climate and fertile soils. In these societies, some are acting almost exactly how Easter Island did. They are deforesting land, wasting resources, and basically heading the same way as the now extinct civilization. We can draw parallels between other civilizations and our world today, and we must learn from this.
On a positive note, we have in past times realized what has been happening, and prevented things from developing and become more serious. An example would be Germany and its forests. At one point it was de-foresting at an enormous rate, clearing its forests for timber. At the point of almost clearing all its land, Germany realized that it must stop, or risk destroying its eco-system. Its has been on a reforesting plan since early 1990, and recovered well. This is just one example of a society re-building itself from the verge of collapse.
In conclusion, great societies, such as Easter Island, have collapsed from things they had control over, like environment damage, and things that they had no control over, such as disease. What has happened in the past can be drawn to what is happening in today’s society. As the popular quote goes, “We must all Learn from our Mistakes, and from others”. Hopefully in the future we will be able to avoid what has happened in the past, by learning from it.
“Easter Islands End”, , Discover Magazine,
“Mysterious Places: Easter Island”, , Cliff Wassman,
“Joseph Tainter”, , Wikipedia,
“Ancient Cultures and Civilizations of the World”, , Worldtreks
“Rapa Nui”, [no date], Grant McCall,
“Germany: Reforestation”, , Rhett Butler,
“Societal Collapse”, , Wikipedia,
Another boring sunday afternoon. Im sitting here waiting for something too happen... whoop, there you go. The Father is home from fishing. Ive spent the day watching movies and updating my myspace whilst collecting glasses and plates around my general computer area. Sound familiar??
I was finishing homework when I remembered My SOSE assignment thats coming up. Thinking about that led to thinking about this blogger thing. After another 10 minutes and various emails I retrieved my password which one forgot, and signed myself in.
What too dedicate this entry too? Too not dedicate it to something would be a waste of time really. So, Hows about Madagascar. The Country/island of the south african coast. The place that too visit is my life ambition. Ever since veiwing a doco produced by David attenborough about the place, its drawn me too it. No idea why, mabye the beauty and individuality of the place.
Reading over what I just wrote, I sound like some professional 58 year old collumnist. Not a kid whos still at school. Anyway, getting back too Madagascar.....
Madagascar, or Republic of Madagascar (older name Malagasy Republic), is an island nation in the Indian Ocean off the southeastern coast of Africa. Madagascar split from West Indian roughly around 80 million years ago. Archaeologists estimate that us human arrived between 200 to 500 AD probably from Asia, either Borneo or the Southern Celebes, in canoes.
At 226,642 square miles (587,000 km squared), Madagascar is the world's 46th-largest country and its the fourth largest island. It is slightly smaller than Texas.
Towards the east, a steep escarpment leads from the central highlands down into a ribbon of rain forest with a narrow coastal further east. The Canal des Pangalanes is a chain of natural and man-made lakes connected by canals that runs parallel to the east coast for some 460 km (about two-thirds of the island).
I dont know much about its politics or what is happening over there in current times. Some say Warfare - which I would hate to believe as it decreases my chances of ever reaching its shoreline.
Why Madagascar? As I said before, probably its individuality and location attract me. There is very few other 'islands' which have retained their species from spreading to other countries, Australia being one of them, and I already live there and have seen plentyful. Its lush rainforest and contrast too australia attracts me, aswell as its pristine habitats, only a fraction of madagascar has been civilized. The rest, is for you too discover. It have amazing wildlife. Apart from the ever famous lemurs, It has many unique and intrguining reptilians, frogs, fish, and birds, not to mention the huge eco-system of insects.
If you ever have the chance too see this unique island of abundand and flourishing life, take it. I doubt you will be dissapointed. For more information on Madagascar's eco-system, http://www.wildmadagascar.org/wildlife/ Im sure you will find it highly informative.
well, Im off. Time to journey away from the ever-capturing cyberspace and into the realistic word. My god that sounded corny haha. Well Im actually off to the outback, of dusty paddocks and drought stricken crops. Wish me luck.