Australia > Australian Capital Territory

Additional Information

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The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) is the capital territory of the Commonwealth of Australia and its smallest self-governing internal territory. It is an inland enclave in New South Wales, situated in bushland.


The ACT was conceived during the federation conventions of the late 1800s as neutral location for a new National Capital. The Australian Constitution provided that following Federation in 1901, land would be ceded to the new Federal Government. The Territory was transferred to the Commonwealth by the state of New South Wales in 1911, and construction of the capital, Canberra, began in 1913.


The floral emblem of the ACT is the Royal Bluebell and the faunal emblem is the Gang-gang cockatoo.


The ACT is bounded by the Goulburn-Cooma railway line in the east, the watershed of Naas Creek in the south, the watershed of the Cotter River in the west, and the watershed of the Molonglo River in the north-east.


Apart from the city of Canberra, the Australian Capital Territory also contains agricultural land (sheep, dairy cattle, vineyards and small amounts of crops), and a large area of national park (Namadgi National Park), much of it mountainous and forested. Small townships and communities located within the ACT include Williamsdale, Naas, Uriarra, Tharwa and Hall.


Tidbinbilla is a locality to the south-west of Canberra that features the Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve and the Canberra Deep Space Communications Complex, operated by the United States’ National Aeronautics and Space Administration as part of its Deep Space Network.


There are a large range of mountains, rivers and creeks in the Namadgi National Park. These include the Naas and Murrumbidgee Rivers.


In 1915 the Jervis Bay Territory Acceptance Act 1915 created the Jervis Bay Territory as an annexe to the Australian Capital Territory. In 1988, when the ACT gained self-government, Jervis Bay became a separate territory administered by the Minister for Territories.


Animals and plants found in the ACT are fairly typical of South Eastern Australia, although there are some endemic species.


Because of its elevation (650 m) and distance from the coast, the Australian Capital Territory experiences four distinct seasons, unlike many other Australian cities whose climates are moderated by the sea. Canberra is notorious for hot, dry summers, and cold winters with occasional fog and frequent frosts. Many of the higher mountains in the territory’s south-west are snow-covered for at least part of the winter. Thunderstorms can occur between October and March, and annual rainfall is 623 millimetres (24.5 in), with rainfall highest in spring and summer, and lowest in winter.


Wording courtesy of http://www.wikipedia.org/

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