The Perils of living Down Under   1 comment


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Snakes, Salty Crocs, Sharks, Scorpions, Scorching Heat and Stingrays, you name it they have it in Australia.  The buggers that live down there are tough hombres. Most of the time the average person doesn’t have to worry about any of the above mentioned distractions, but many Mates are effected every year.

BBC

More than 3,000 firefighters in Australia are battling devastating bushfires raging across New South Wales as weather conditions worsen.

“This will be as bad as it gets,” Rural Fire Service chief Shane Fitzsimmons said, adding there was “real potential for more loss of homes and life”.

High temperatures, low humidity and strong winds of up to 100km/h (60mph) were forecast for Wednesday.

In total, 59 fires are burning across the state, 19 of which are uncontained.

Hundreds more firefighters have been deployed to the Blue Mountains, to the west of Sydney, to work alongside the 1,000 already there, making it one of the largest firefighting contingents ever assembled in the state’s history.

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Residents have been urged to leave affected areas. Hundreds of nursing home residents were evacuated late on Tuesday and all schools in the area are closed.

“We are all in this together and we are going to get through this day. If you haven’t prepared yourself, for those in the Blue Mountains, now is the time to leave,” NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell said at a news conference on Wednesday morning.

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  • Snakes: With 41 recorded deaths between 1980 and 2009, snake deaths in Australia average out at less than two per year.
  • Spiders: Nobody in Australia has died from a spider bite since 1979 after the successful introduction of antivenom for all native species.
  • Sharks*: Accounted for 25 deaths between 2000 and (March) 2012 in Australia, about 2 a year.
  • Crocodiles: Historically, crocodiles account for less than one death per year here in Australia, although that is increasing slightly as the crocodile population rises following the ban on crocodile hunting in 1971.
  • Blue Ringed Octopus: Just 3 recorded deaths in the last century.
  • Stonefish: One unconfirmed death by stonefish in 1915.
  • Cone Snails: I could find no recorded deaths from cone snails in Australia whatsoever.
  • Killer Jellyfish: Jellyfish account for (at time of writing) 66 deaths since records began in 1883. The box jellyfish was responsible for 64 deaths, and the Irukandji the other two. It sounds a lot, but still less than one death per year, more like just half a death per year.

Danger rating: 10/10
1. Box jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri)

Danger rating: 9/10
2. Honey bee (Apis mellifera)
3. Irukandji (Carukia barnesi) Tiny but deadly jellyfish

Danger rating: 8/10
4. Bull shark (Carcharhinus leucas)
5. Eastern brown snake (Pseudonaja textilis)
6. Saltwater or estuarine crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

7. Sydney funnel web spider (Atrax robustus)

Danger rating: 7/10
8. Blue-ringed octopus (Genus Hapalochlaena)
9. Coastal taipan (Oxyuranus scutellatus)

10.Common death adder (Acanthopis antarticus)
11. Cone shells (Conus sp.)

12. Dugite or spotted brown snake (Pseudonaja affinis)
13. Mulga snake or king brown snake (Pseudechis australis)

14. Red-bellied black snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus)
15. Tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier) 16. Tiger snake (Notechis scutatus)
17. Great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias)
18. Yellow-bellied sea snake (Pelamis platurus)

Danger rating: 6/10
19. Bluebottle (Physalia physalis)

20. Common lionfish (Pterois volitans)
21. Collett’s snake (Pseudechis colletti)
22. Highland copperhead (Austrelaps ramsayi)
23. Inland Taipan (snake)
24. Redback spider (Lactodectus hasselti)

25. Reef stonefish (Synanceia verrucossa)
26. Smooth toadfish (Tetractenos glaber)
27. Blue-bellied black snake (Pseudechis guttatus)

Danger rating: 5/10
28. Australian paralysis tick (Ixodes holocyclus)
29. Bull ant (Myrmercia pilosula)
30. Giant centipede (Ethmostigmus rubripes)

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Posted October 23, 2013 by markosun in Uncategorized

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One response to “The Perils of living Down Under

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  1. Hey Markosun!

    Having been here from Canada for the last 45 years, I loved your posting! Even in humour, what you have here is mostly true, Very surprised you don’t seem to have mentioned the notorious Funnel Web Spider. This fat and nuggety big fanged spider can leap a distance, lives under houses in Sydney for example, and gives you death in minutes. For all this, you can sleep in a zip up tent in Ozzie Land and be safe from almost anything. No bears, or cougars down here to eat you while you are trapped in a down sleeping bag!! Amazing how many people jump in the water up north here without thinking enough about the big crocs. You would not want to camp too near the waters edge up there. Incidentally; I have bicycled besides herds of wild horses running along opposite me in the fields of golden grass near the highway, and even had flocks of budgies waving up and down in the air while the bike silently pedaled by. Ever seen a flock of two thousand pitch black cockatoo parrots screeching above you? By the way, not only is the sun boiling here, the atmosphere seems not to filter it much either. Check out the skin cancer rates here. Tourists should know that you will burn badly here if you go out for more than twenty five minutes without sunscreen. I love the hot though!!

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