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Flight-attendant pleads guilty after drinking on the job

<p dir="ltr">A Ryanair flight crew member who pleaded guilty to downing whiskey and wine from the drinks trolley mid-flight claims: “I am not a criminal.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Sam Thompson, aged 26, was reportedly seen “necking the whole bottle” of wine while on board the flight from Rzeszow, Poland, to Stansted, UK.</p> <p dir="ltr">The British cabin crew member was filmed by a horrified passenger during the act and was subsequently arrested after the plane landed. </p> <p dir="ltr">He was breathalysed and found to have 50mg per 100 millilitres of breath. </p> <p dir="ltr">Footage from the flight showed Thompson in his uniform, sitting near the exit door as he apparently tries to discreetly drink rosé.</p> <p dir="ltr">In another clip, he turns away and appears to knock back a shot of whiskey.</p> <p dir="ltr">After sinking it, he says, “Don’t make it obvious,” as he appears to try to hide his drinking from other staff. </p> <p dir="ltr">Michael Carroll, his defending lawyer, said Thompson and alcohol are “not the best of friends”. He said it was a “great pity” the sentencing could not conclude as planned – but said he has “glowing references” to show the judge.</p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-e2aa9c4e-7fff-7220-0b07-99a449800614"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Mr Cranmer extended Thompson’s unconditional bail but reminded him he must be at court for sentencing and not commit further offences in the meantime. Ryanair crew are not allowed to drink alcohol up to eight hours before, or during, a flight.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: The Sun</em></p>

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Meteors seem to be raining down on New Zealand, but why are some bright green?

<h1 class="legacy">Meteors seem to be raining down on New Zealand, but why are some bright green?</h1> <figure><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/476788/original/file-20220731-19335-76trxr.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;rect=5%2C304%2C3828%2C1851&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" /><figcaption><span class="attribution"><span class="source">Greg Price</span>, <span class="license">Author provided</span></span></figcaption></figure> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/jack-baggaley-1366298">Jack Baggaley</a>, <em><a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-canterbury-1004">University of Canterbury</a></em></p> <p>New Zealand may seem to be under meteor bombardment at the moment. After a <a href="https://theconversation.com/equivalent-to-1-800-tonnes-of-tnt-what-we-now-know-about-the-meteor-that-lit-up-the-daytime-sky-above-new-zealand-186636">huge meteor exploded</a> above the sea near Wellington on July 7, creating a sonic boom that could be heard across the bottom of the South Island, a smaller fireball was captured two weeks later above Canterbury.</p> <p><a href="https://fireballs.nz/">Fireballs Aotearoa</a>, a collaboration between astronomers and citizen scientists which aims to recover freshly fallen meteorites, has received a lot of questions about these events. One of the most frequent is about the bright green colour, and whether it is the same green produced by auroras.</p> <figure class="align-center "><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/476789/original/file-20220731-20-zrewrz.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/476789/original/file-20220731-20-zrewrz.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=399&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476789/original/file-20220731-20-zrewrz.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=399&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476789/original/file-20220731-20-zrewrz.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=399&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476789/original/file-20220731-20-zrewrz.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=502&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476789/original/file-20220731-20-zrewrz.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=502&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476789/original/file-20220731-20-zrewrz.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=502&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="An image of an aurora australis" /><figcaption><span class="caption">An aurora australis observed from the international space station.</span> <span class="attribution"><span class="source">Wikimedia Commons</span>, <a class="license" href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/4.0/">CC BY-ND</a></span></figcaption></figure> <p>Green fireballs have been reported and filmed in New Zealand regularly. Bright meteors often signal the arrival of a chunk of asteroid, which can be anywhere between a few centimetres to a metre in diameter when it comes crashing through the atmosphere.</p> <p>Some of these asteroids contain nickel and iron and they hit the atmosphere at speeds of up to 60km per second. This releases an enormous amount of heat very quickly, and the vapourised iron and nickel radiate green light.</p> <p>But is this the same as the bright green of an aurora? For the most recent meteor, the answer is mainly no, but it’s actually not that simple.</p> <h2>The colours of a meteor trail</h2> <p>The green glow of the aurora is caused by oxygen ions in the upper atmosphere, created by collisions between atmospheric oxygen molecules and particles ejected by the sun.</p> <p>These oxygen ions recombine with electrons to produce oxygen atoms, but the electrons can persist in an excited state for several seconds. In an energy transition known as “forbidden” because it does not obey the usual quantum rules, they then radiate the auroral green light at 557nm wavelength.</p> <p>A meteor can also shine by this route, but only if it’s extremely fast. Very fast meteors heat up in the thin atmosphere above 100km where auroras form.</p> <p>If you want to see a green auroral wake from a meteor, watch out for the Perseid meteor shower, which has now started and will peak on August 13 in the southern hemisphere.</p> <p>Also arriving at about 60km per second, the Perseids are extremely fast bits of the <a href="https://www.space.com/33677-comet-swift-tuttle-perseid-meteor-shower-source.html">comet Swift-Tuttle</a>. Some Perseids trail a beautiful, glowing and distinctly green wake behind them, particularly at the start of their path.</p> <p>Once the Canterbury meteor hit on July 22, the capricious winds of the upper atmosphere twisted the gently glowing trail, resulting in a pale yellow glow towards the end (as seen in the GIF below, also recorded by Greg Price for an earlier meteor). This is caused by sodium atoms being continually excited in a catalytic reaction involving ozone.</p> <p><img src="https://cdn.theconversation.com/static_files/files/2231/The_22_July_meteor_-_persistent_train_-_credit_Greg_Price.gif?1659310010" width="100%" /></p> <h2>Are we being bombarded by meteors?</h2> <p>Yes and no. The arrival of big, booming green meteors and the dropping of meteorites isn’t rare in New Zealand, but it is rare to recover the rock. Fireballs Aotearoa is working to improve the recovery rate.</p> <p>In an average year, perhaps four meteorites hit New Zealand. We’re encouraging citizen scientists to build their own meteor camera systems so they can catch these events.</p> <p>By comparing the meteor against the starry background and triangulating images caught by multiple cameras, we can pin down the meteor’s position in the atmosphere to within tens of metres.</p> <figure class="align-center "><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/476790/original/file-20220731-43929-h2dp31.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/476790/original/file-20220731-43929-h2dp31.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=450&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476790/original/file-20220731-43929-h2dp31.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=450&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476790/original/file-20220731-43929-h2dp31.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=450&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476790/original/file-20220731-43929-h2dp31.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=566&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476790/original/file-20220731-43929-h2dp31.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=566&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476790/original/file-20220731-43929-h2dp31.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=566&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="The July 22 meteor as seen by a specialised meteor camera near Ashburton." /><figcaption><span class="caption">The July 22 meteor as seen by a specialised meteor camera near Ashburton.</span> <span class="attribution"><span class="source">Campbell Duncan/NASA/CAMS NZ</span>, <span class="license">Author provided</span></span></figcaption></figure> <p>Not only does that help us find the rock, but it tells us what the pre-impact orbit of the meteoroid was, which in turn tells us which part of the solar system it came from. This is a rather efficient way of sampling the solar system without ever having to launch a space mission.</p> <figure class="align-center "><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/476791/original/file-20220731-31484-7i4x0t.png?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/476791/original/file-20220731-31484-7i4x0t.png?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=440&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476791/original/file-20220731-31484-7i4x0t.png?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=440&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476791/original/file-20220731-31484-7i4x0t.png?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=440&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476791/original/file-20220731-31484-7i4x0t.png?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=553&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476791/original/file-20220731-31484-7i4x0t.png?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=553&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/476791/original/file-20220731-31484-7i4x0t.png?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=553&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="Map of witness reports and cameras." /><figcaption><span class="caption">Witness reports and high-resolution meteor cameras help to calculate a meteor’s trajectory. This map shows the approximate trajectory of the July 22 meteor at the top of the red shape in the centre.</span> <span class="attribution"><span class="source">Fireballs Aotearoa and International Meteor Association</span>, <span class="license">Author provided</span></span></figcaption></figure> <p>Fireballs Aotearoa is rapidly populating Otago with meteor cameras and there are half a dozen more in other parts of the South Island. The North Island isn’t well covered yet, and we’re keen for more people (in either island) to build or buy a meteor camera and keep it pointed at the sky.</p> <p>Then next time a bright meteor explodes with a boom above New Zealand, we may be able to pick up the meteorite and do some good science with it.</p> <hr /> <p><em>Many thanks for the input from Jim Rowe of the UK Fireball Alliance, and Greg Price who photographed the July 22 meteor and the persistent train.</em><!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/187836/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/jack-baggaley-1366298">Jack Baggaley</a>, Professor Emeritus Physics and Astronomy, <em><a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-canterbury-1004">University of Canterbury</a></em></p> <p>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/meteors-seem-to-be-raining-down-on-new-zealand-but-why-are-some-bright-green-187836">original article</a>.</p>

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Australians warned travel chaos will continue

<p dir="ltr">An aviation expert has warned travel chaos “pain” in Australian airports could continue into 2023 as the industry struggles to meet soaring demand after stripping back services during the pandemic.</p> <p dir="ltr">Flight Centre managing director Graham Turner cautioned travellers to be wary of delays and cancellations until at least the end of the year as airlines contend with inexperienced and ill staff.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Bear in mind the aviation industry, and you know travel industry generally, has two-and-a-half years when we had to absolutely cut to the bone everything and now building that back up is quite difficult,” he said on Channel 9’s Today show.</p> <p dir="ltr">Mr Turner admitted the aviation industry was experiencing a “tough period” and asked travellers to exercise “a bit of patience” and noted the chaos was more manageable for domestic travellers despite the chaos. </p> <p dir="ltr">40 flights between Sydney and Melbourne have been cancelled and hundreds of people were left sitting on planes after a computer outage grounded Qantas planes.</p> <p dir="ltr">Mr Turner said there would continue to be “pain” for travellers for at least the next couple of months as the industry grapples with staffing issues and the effects of the ongoing pandemic.</p> <p dir="ltr">He predicts travelling around Australia will be much easier by the end of year when “all of this really settles down”.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Domestically, it will improve and we predict certainly by October/November, assuming the Omicron does settle down, it will be much better off,” he said.</p> <p dir="ltr">While the news will surely be welcomed by local travellers, those looking to travel internationally have no reassuring timeline for when the dust will settle.</p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-5062b71c-7fff-82f4-cc44-e57c853befca"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Sydney’s Kingsford Smith International Airport was recently ranked one of the 10 worst airports in the world for flight delays. Meanwhile, social media has been flooded with angry travellers reporting lost baggage, delayed or cancelled flights and staggering queues.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Getty</em></p>

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How your new haircut could help save the Daintree

<p>The Daintree rainforest is overflowing with flora and fauna not found anywhere else in the world. It is also believed to be the oldest continual patch of tropical rainforest in existence. With more than half of the world’s rainforests already destroyed, here's why it is imperative to help support the ‘buy back’ process to ensure this spectacular part of our nation can’t be developed.</p> <p>HalfCut is an innovative charity created in 2017 which is helping to save the Daintree rainforest in Far North Queensland. In fact, during the covid lockdowns of 2021, they helped raise more than $1.2m for the Daintree buyback program which protected over 500,000  square metres of endangered Daintree rainforest. This is equivalent to 123.55 football fields worth of tropical rainforest.</p> <p><strong>Here’s what you need to know right now about the Daintree</strong><br />Two-thirds of the Daintree Lowland Rainforest was excluded from inclusion in the Daintree National Park and World Heritage Area that was declared in 1988. A developer created 1,137 blocks in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. In 1982 a pro-development Queensland State Government re-zoned leasehold and freehold in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest, enabling a developer to subdivide it into 1,137 blocks. </p> <p>This resulted in the building of over 50km of roads and the clearing and development of high conservation value rainforest for housing. The freehold land between the Daintree River and Cape Tribulation has World Heritage values and should be protected in the Daintree National Park.</p> <p><strong>Why is this such an important cause right now?<br /></strong>“HalfCut is an environmental not-for-profit that invites people to be visual disruptors to raise the urgent awareness that half the world's forests are destroyed, and regrettably a further 30 percent of the world’s forests are degraded,” explains James Stanton-Cooke (affectionately known as Jimmy HalfCut), who, along with his life partner Jessica Clarke, is the force behind this conversationalist challenge.   </p> <p>He adds, “The latest 2022 State of the Environment Report found that almost half of Australia's land is now used for grazing and the areas committed to forestry and cropping have increased. More than 6.1 million hectares of primary native forest, which is an area more than six times the size of suburban Melbourne, has been cleared since 1990.” </p> <p>Over the five years to 2019, nearly 290,000 hectares of primary forest and 343,000 hectares of regrown forest was cleared. Yet another reason to go to HalfCut to raise this urgent awareness and provide proactive tangible outcomes to addressing these issues. </p> <p>The HalfCut Challenge in August invites the brave to courageously have some hair-larious fun to start conversations about conservation and raise funds for Daintree buyback to be saved from development. </p> <p>“In the midst of the ongoing climate crisis events - drought, fires, and more recent flooding and pandemic events, saving rainforest and rewilding (tree planting) of our rainforests is needed more than ever. The proof is in the trees for carbon drawn down, increasing biodiversity, water cycles, foods, medicines and giving us clean air to breath,” adds Stanton-Cooke.</p> <p><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/08/HalfCut07_1280.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>James Stanton-Cooke (affectionately known as Jimmy HalfCut) and co-founder Jessica Clarke are the force behind this conversationalist challenge.</em></p> <p><strong>Here’s how the ‘buy back system works<br /></strong>HalfCut and two other NFP’s partners – Jabalbina Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation and Rainforest 4 – joined together with the unique program "Stronger Together" for the buyback high value conservation Lots in the Daintree to expand back into Daintree National Park. </p> <p>Upon settlement, the title of the property will be transferred to the Jabalbina Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation, who will then manage the transfer of the title for the land to the Queensland Government. The process of purchasing the property and transferring it into the national parks estate will likely take between six to 12 months. </p> <p>“It is about righting a wrong in more ways than one as money raised also helped the Daintree rainforest now be jointly managed by Traditional Owners and Queensland National Parks. This now means the Jabalbina Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation (JYAC) now is an integral part of managing the conservation of the Daintree rainforest so it will always be protected,” says Jessica Clarke.</p> <p>The team behind HalfCut helped to commemorate this achievement with a Welcome to Country smoking ceremony with traditional owners.</p> <p>In 2022 the goal is to once again crack a million dollars in donations. There are three Daintree rainforests Lots supporters are aiming to save including:</p> <ul> <li>Lot 6 - 3.75 hectares located in Forest Creek, Daintree Lowland Rainforest, Queensland (<a href="https://go.halfcut.org/halfcut22/posts/help-save-lot-6-new-daintree-project" target="_blank" rel="noopener">more information here</a>)</li> <li>Lot 93 - 8.09 hectares located in Diwan, Daintree Lowland Rainforest, Queensland (<a href="https://go.halfcut.org/halfcut22/posts/help-save-lot-93-new-lowland-daintree-project" target="_blank" rel="noopener">more information here</a>)</li> <li>Lot 197 - 1.015 hectares located in Cow Bay, Daintree Lowland Rainforest, Queensland (<a href="https://go.halfcut.org/halfcut22/posts/help-save-lot-197-quandong-road-in-the-daintree-lowland-rainforest" target="_blank" rel="noopener">more information here</a>)</li> </ul> <p><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/08/HalfCut04_1280.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p><strong>Here’s why these are particularly important lots to save<br /></strong>All 24 lots saved have had intensive surveys by respected ecologist and botanist Kristopher Kupsch who has recently encountered what is thought to be <a href="https://go.halfcut.org/halfcut22/posts/new-species-of-gardenia-thought-to-be-discovered-in-the-daintree" target="_blank" rel="noopener">a new species of Gardenia</a> in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest.  </p> <p>It is Kupsch’s job to determine what endangered and threatened species are on the lots, what invasive species and if a new potential species are potentially found. With 25 years of experience in the Daintree he has never encountered this species before. </p> <p>“When I first saw the Gardenia (Atractocarpus sp. nov.), I wondered what it was because the specimen looked different to all known species in the Rubiaceae family but matched Atractocarpus, being similar to the Hairy Gardenia (Atractocarpus hirtus),” Kupsch says, adding that the Hairy Gardenia is common in the Daintree lowlands.</p> <p><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/08/HalfCut05_1280.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>Ecologist and botanist Kristopher Kupsch with the newly discovered species of Gardenia.</em></p> <p>The iconic and colourful cassowary is one of the most recognisable icons of the Wet Tropics. This striking bird with its brilliant blue and purple head and neck, red wattles, and amber eyes, appears extensively on promotional brochures and souvenirs throughout the region. However, it is an endangered species and its future is uncertain. </p> <p>Saving these lots is providing the much needed habitat required for their survival. Cassowaries prefer lowland Daintree areas, where regrettably cars and pet owners' dogs are impacting cassowaries and chicks' population, along with feral pigs eating the eggs and chicks and competing for their food. It is now estimated that the gardener of the Daintree, the cassowary, a keystone species, numbers less than 2,500 in the Daintree. A male cassowary with three chicks was recently sighted on Lot 93.</p> <p><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/08/HalfCut06_1280.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>The iconic and colourful cassowary is one of the most recognisable icons of the Wet Tropics.</em></p> <p><strong>What exactly is HalfCut about?<br /></strong>HalfCut day is Wednesday 31st August 2022, when anyone wanting to support the plight of the Daintree is welcome to accept a crazy hair challenge. Created by James Standon-Cooke (affectionately known as Jimmy HalfCut) and life partner Jessie Clarke, this environmental activist couple is challenging you to cut off half of your hair, beard or moustache. If you feel like splashing out in colour then dye your locks a different shade or braid half of your hair, undercut or even get a normal haircut showing half of the length removed. More recently half stylish face makeup, baking goods, and even the odd half mowed lawn have been popular. It’s anything HalfCut to help to raise awareness and money for this great cause. Ultimately it’s about raising awareness for conservation. </p> <p>It is all about doing your bit to help to protect the oldest rainforest in the world. Don’t feel like doing the challenge but know someone aged 18+ who will? Then dare them to accept and sponsor them through this registered charity. Dozens of childcare centres, schools, Universities and businesses have rallied behind this campaign to save the Daintree forest. </p> <p>All money donated helps protect Daintree Rainforest in Far North Queensland which provides crucial habitat for many endangered species such as the Musky-Rat Kangaroo, Waterfall Frog, Southern Cassowary and Northern Quoll. </p> <p>The Daintree is the most biologically diverse in the world with lush fauna and includes wildlife such as 65 percent of different kinds of native butterflies and bats, 35 percent of the world’s types of frogs, and 20 percent of Australian bird species.</p> <p><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/08/HalfCut03_1280.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p><strong>Here’s how your new haircut could help<br /></strong>Every $2.50 is one more square metre saved of the world’s oldest rainforest. Shave half your beard, cut, colour, braid your hair or simply get a haircut.</p> <p>World HalfCut Day is on 31st August. Visit <a href="http://www.go.halfcut.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">www.Go.HalfCut.org</a> to find out more and become an environmentally friendly hero. Then share your new hair do (or hair don’t!) on social media (using the hashtag #HalfCut) with friends and family to help protect the oldest rainforest in the world. It is up to you how long you stay HalfCut. It may be for a day, a week or even a month.</p> <p>It is all about raising money, spreading the word and having fun. The more you raise the more you’ll help this important cause and all donations over $2 are tax deductible. You can even create a team to join together to have a hair-raising adventure and help a great cause.</p> <p>Don’t want to mess with your perfect locks? Then help spread the word by buying a HalfCut t-shirt, bag, hat or hoodie and save 10 square metres of rainforest for life per purchase, or simply make a donation to this great cause. Visit <a href="http://go.halfcut.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">go.halfcut.org</a></p> <p><strong>How can you help save the Daintree?<br /></strong><a href="https://go.halfcut.org/t/over-sixty-60" target="_blank" rel="noopener">OverSixty</a> has our very own HalfCut squad to sign up to and/or donate to save the three Lots this August, reaching the $1m target goal. You can engage in the HalfCut Challenge this August and/or donate to the cause. </p> <p>If your interested in saving you very own Daintree lot, please contact <a href="mailto:jimmy@halfcut.org" target="_blank" rel="noopener">jimmy@halfcut.org</a></p> <p>HalfCut, with partners JYAC and R4, hold annual Save the Daintree tours, with the next tour in October 2022. <a href="https://go.halfcut.org/daintreerainforesttour2022" target="_blank" rel="noopener">See the previous April 2022 Save the Daintree tour handover of ten Daintree lots here</a> for an idea of the program for all HalfCutters and donors to attend. </p> <ul> <li aria-level="1">Donate $2.50 and save a sqm of the Daintree rainforest</li> <li aria-level="1">Donate $62 and save 24.8 sqm of the Daintree rainforest</li> <li aria-level="1">Donate $112 and save 44.8 sqm of the Daintree rainforest</li> <li aria-level="1">Donate $236 and save 94.4 sqm of the Daintree rainforest</li> <li aria-level="1">Donate $516 and save 206.4 sqm of the Daintree rainforest</li> <li aria-level="1">Donate $10,000 and save a space equivalent to the size of a football field</li> <li aria-level="1">$1 million of donations willsave 400,000 sq metres or 98 football fields of Gondwanaland Daintree rainforest</li> </ul> <p>All funds raised will be spent on Daintree land purchase and protection.</p> <p><em>All images: Supplied.</em></p>

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Here’s what’s happening across Australia in August

<p dir="ltr">With the winter chill waning and spring just around the corner, there is plenty to do around the country.</p> <p dir="ltr">Whether you’re a foodie, art connoisseur, or looking for your next film fix, here’s what’s happening around Australia in August.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong><em>Fleur de Villes</em> Flower Show, Sydney</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">After a five-year tour around the world, a whimsical flower show, <em>Fleur de Villes</em>, will be landing in Sydney’s Royal Botanic Gardens from August 19-28.</p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-b5099dd3-7fff-a1b9-0da0-0d0711aae8cf"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">This year’s theme, <em>FEMMES</em>, will see local Sydney florists create life-size tributes to 15 remarkable women, including Kylie Minogue, Frida Kahlo and Indigenous activist Evelyn Scott. </p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/fleur-de-villes.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: @rbgsydney (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Floral workshops, bespoke dining experiences, a pop-up flower market, and talks from scientists, florists and horticulturalists round out this year’s program, with general admission tickets costing $22, and seniors and kids aged 5-17 getting in for half-price.</p> <p dir="ltr">To find out more about the show, head <a href="https://www.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/what-s-on/fleurs-de-villes-femmes-1" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>SALA Festival, Adelaide</strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-63f5ee9c-7fff-bb05-be75-4f4677bc5a53"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">The South Australian Living Artists Festival is returning for a statewide celebration of local artists and celebrating its 25th festival with a Silver exhibition of local artists curated by six special guests, including the Lord Mayor of Adelaide.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/sala-festival.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: @salafestival (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Along with thousands of artists exhibiting across metropolitan and regional South Australia, this year’s program also features an online exhibition, masterclasses and workshops across various art forms, and a five-day drawing marathon.</p> <p dir="ltr">To find out more about this year’s SALA Festival, head <a href="https://www.salafestival.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>The Curated (side)Plate, Queensland</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">The culinary festival is returning to the Sunshine Coast once again, following its debut in 2019, for ten days of culinary experiences.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-4b02d736-7fff-f6ed-2416-015107a52ee7"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">This year’s program is filled with long lunches, picnics, foodie nights and brunches, featuring local produce and culinary talent.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/sideplate-fest.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: @thecuratedplate (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">To find out more about the Curated (side)Plate festival, running from July 29 until August 7, and purchase tickets, head here.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Central Coast Chorale Anniversary Concert, NSW</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">After nearly 250 concerts, the Central Coast Chorale is celebrating 30 years of music at their upcoming concert, ‘Celebration in Song’.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-16294372-7fff-1775-e9ec-3f61ec010c3a"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">The choir of 55 singers will be performing a range of majestic music, from Bruckner and Haydn to the highlights of Mozart’s opera The Magic Flute. A newly-commissioned piece by emerging composer Courtney Cousins - who is currently playing Mahler’s second symphony with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra - will also be debuting.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/coast-chorale.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Central Coast Chorale</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Tickets for the concert on August 28 will be available to purchase at the door at St Patrick’s Catholic Church East Gosford, with more information available <a href="https://www.centralcoastchorale.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>70th Melbourne International Film Festival</strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-a4bbd6c4-7fff-322e-4a42-8c68a76f8517"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Melbourne’s month-long celebration of cinema is returning once again to cinemas across Victoria, bringing with it a program of acclaimed international films, world premieres, and new Australian cinema.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/miff1.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Visit Melbourne</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Other highlights include the launch of the festival’s film competition, as well as a series of special events, talks, performances, and commissioned works.</p> <p dir="ltr">To see the full program and purchase tickets, head <a href="https://miff.com.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Darwin Festival</strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-346bb106-7fff-507c-1f1d-2e8d944bf641"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Darwin’s annual winter arts festival has returned, featuring a program of outdoor festivities and activities that take advantage of the Top End’s dry, tropical winter.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/darwin-fest.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Tony Lewis (Darwin Festival)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Highlights include balarr inyiny (meaning Light Dreaming), a light festival that will see 160 drones take flight for a breathtaking sky show that illustrates Larrakia songlines from across Darwin’s coastline, along with the Prehistoric Picnic and plenty of comedians, local and international artists, and theatre.</p> <p dir="ltr">To see the full program and find out more about Darwin Festival 2022, head <a href="https://www.darwinfestival.org.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Gascoyne Food Festival, WA</strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-c86a1f24-7fff-6987-05fe-e5e31a7f5c9b"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">The country’s largest regional food experience is heading to Gascoyne, in WA’s north-west, from July 30 until September 4.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/gascoyne-fest.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: @t.r.i.s.m (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">The region’s best ingredients and culinary talent will be on display across various events, including Australia’s Biggest BBQ (September 3), pop-up food market Eating the Gascoyne (August 4), the Twilight Gala Dinner (August 5), Canapes on the Gascoyne (August 26), and Flavours of Shark Bay (September 4).</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-86cac65d-7fff-8136-43c6-7f7d318dbed5"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">To find out more and book your spot, head <a href="https://www.gascoynefoodfestival.com.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p>

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New research in Arnhem Land reveals why institutional fire management is inferior to cultural burning

<p>One of the conclusions of this week’s shocking <a href="https://soe.dcceew.gov.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">State of the Environment report</a> is that climate change is lengthening Australia’s bushfire seasons and raising the number of days with a fire danger rating of “very high” or above. In New South Wales, for example, the season now extends to almost eight months.</p> <p>It has never been more important for institutional bushfire management programs to apply the principles and practices of Indigenous fire management, or “cultural burning”. As the report notes, cultural burning reduces the risk of bushfires, supports habitat and improves Indigenous wellbeing. And yet, the report finds:</p> <blockquote> <p>with significant funding gaps, tenure impediments and policy barriers, Indigenous cultural burning remains underused – it is currently applied over less than 1% of the land area of Australia’s south‐eastern states and territory.</p> </blockquote> <p>Our <a href="https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-022-12946-3" target="_blank" rel="noopener">recent research</a> in <em>Scientific Reports</em> specifically addressed the question: how do the environmental outcomes from cultural burning compare to mainstream bushfire management practices?</p> <p>Using the stone country of the Arnhem Land Plateau as a case study, we reveal why institutional fire management is inferior to cultural burning.</p> <p>The few remaining landscapes where Aboriginal people continue an unbroken tradition of caring for Country are of international importance. They should be nationally recognised, valued and resourced like other protected cultural and historical places.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Different indigenous fire application today with a country full of weeds. First burn of of two applications this year. This is what we have to do to make country have less flammable vegetation. Walk through, More time and love put into country. <a href="https://t.co/pnoWFQbq6C">pic.twitter.com/pnoWFQbq6C</a></p> <p>— Victor Steffensen (@V_Steffensen) <a href="https://twitter.com/V_Steffensen/status/1505384041402748930?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 20, 2022</a></p></blockquote> <p><strong>Ancient fire management</strong></p> <p>The rugged terrain of the Arnhem Plateau in Northern Territory has an ancient human history, with archaeological evidence <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2017-07-20/aboriginal-shelter-pushes-human-history-back-to-65,000-years/8719314#:%7E:text=New%20excavations%20of%20a%20rock,earlier%20than%20archaeologists%20previously%20thought." target="_blank" rel="noopener">dated at 65,000 years</a>.</p> <p>Arnhem Land is an ideal place to explore the effects of different fire regimes because fire is such an essential feature of the natural and cultural environment.</p> <p>Australia’s monsoon tropics are particularly fire prone given the sharply contrasting wet and dry seasons. The wet season sees prolific growth of grasses and other flammable plants, and dry season has reliable hot, dry, windy conditions.</p> <p>Millennia of <a href="https://theconversation.com/the-worlds-best-fire-management-system-is-in-northern-australia-and-its-led-by-indigenous-land-managers-133071" target="_blank" rel="noopener">skilful fire management</a> by Indigenous people in these landscapes have allowed plants and animals needing infrequently burnt habitat to thrive.</p> <p>This involves shifting “mosaic” burning, where small areas are burned regularly to create a patchwork of habitats with different fire histories. This gives wildlife a diversity of resources and places to shelter in.</p> <p>Conservation biologists suspect that the loss of such patchy fires since colonisation has contributed to the <a href="http://132.248.10.25/therya/index.php/THERYA/article/view/236/html_66" target="_blank" rel="noopener">calamitous demise</a> of wildlife species across northern Australia, such as northern quolls, northern brown bandicoots and grassland melomys.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">"Fire is the way to really look after the land and the people. Since we started here, we've been using fire. And we need to bring it back because it unites the people and the land." Jacob Morris, Gumea-Dharrawal Yuin man. 🎥 Craig Bender &amp; <a href="https://twitter.com/VeraHongTweets?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@VeraHongTweets</a> <a href="https://t.co/Afh6iwIrOX">pic.twitter.com/Afh6iwIrOX</a></p> <p>— FiresticksAlliance (@FiresticksA) <a href="https://twitter.com/FiresticksA/status/1436177617049296901?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">September 10, 2021</a></p></blockquote> <p><strong>Collapse of the cypress pine</strong></p> <p>Our study was undertaken over 25 years, and wouldn’t have been possible without the generous support and close involvement of the Traditional Owners over this time.</p> <p>It compared an area under near continuous Indigenous management by the Kune people of Western Arnhem Land with ecologically similar and unoccupied areas within Kakadu National Park.</p> <p>We found populations of the cypress pine (<em>Callitris intratropica</em>) remained healthy under continual Aboriginal fire management. By contrast, cypress pine populations had collapsed in ecologically similar areas in Kakadu due to the loss of Indigenous fire management, as they have across much of northern Australia.</p> <p>The population of dead and living pines is like a barcode that records fire regime change. The species is so long lived that older trees were well established before colonisation.</p> <p>The timber is extremely durable and termite resistant, so a tree killed by fire remains in the landscape for many decades. And mature trees, but not juveniles, can tolerate low intensity fires, but intense fires kill both.</p> <figure class="align-center zoomable"><em><a href="https://images.theconversation.com/files/475072/original/file-20220720-22-odbe84.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=1000&amp;fit=clip"><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/475072/original/file-20220720-22-odbe84.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/475072/original/file-20220720-22-odbe84.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=800&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/475072/original/file-20220720-22-odbe84.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=800&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/475072/original/file-20220720-22-odbe84.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=800&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/475072/original/file-20220720-22-odbe84.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=1005&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/475072/original/file-20220720-22-odbe84.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=1005&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/475072/original/file-20220720-22-odbe84.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=1005&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="" /></a></em><figcaption><em><span class="caption">Cypress pine timber can remain in the landscape decades after the tree died.</span> <span class="attribution"><span class="source">Michael Hains/Atlas of Living Australia</span>, <a class="license" href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">CC BY-NC-SA</a></span></em></figcaption></figure> <p>Since 2007, park rangers have attempted to emulate cultural burning outcomes. They’ve used aircraft to drop incendiaries to create a coarse patchwork of burned and unburned areas to improve biodiversity in the stone country within Kakadu.</p> <p>Unfortunately, our research found Kakadu’s fire management interventions failed to restore landscapes to the healthier ecological condition under traditional Aboriginal fire management.</p> <p>While the Kakadu aerial burning program increased the amount of unburnt vegetation, it didn’t reverse the population collapse of cypress pines. Searches of tens of kilometres failed to find a single seedling in Kakadu, whereas they were common in comparable areas under Aboriginal fire management.</p> <p>Our study highlights that once the ecological benefits of cultural burning are lost, they cannot be simply restored with mainstream fire management approaches.</p> <p>But that’s not to say the ecological impacts from the loss of Aboriginal fire management cannot be reversed. Rather, restoring fire regimes and ecosystem health will be slow, and require special care in where and how fires are set.</p> <p>This requires teams on the ground with deep knowledge of the land, rather than simply spreading aerial incendiaries from helicopters.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">After 60 years of fire exclusion, another magic day restoring fire to Arakwal-Bundjalung-Bumberlin country. <a href="https://t.co/xRRNb4ELdQ">pic.twitter.com/xRRNb4ELdQ</a></p> <p>— Dr. Andy Baker (@FireDiversity) <a href="https://twitter.com/FireDiversity/status/1537768580455931905?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">June 17, 2022</a></p></blockquote> <p><strong>There’s much to learn</strong></p> <p>There remains much for Western science to learn about <a href="https://theconversation.com/fighting-fire-with-fire-botswana-adopts-indigenous-australians-ancient-burning-tradition-135363" target="_blank" rel="noopener">traditional fire management</a>.</p> <p>Large-scale institutional fire management is based on concepts of efficiency and generality. It is controlled by bureaucracies, and achieved using machines and technologies.</p> <p>Such an “industrial” approach cannot replace the placed-based knowledge, including close human relationships with Country, underpinning <a href="https://www.firesticks.org.au/about/cultural-burning/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">cultural burning</a>.</p> <p>Cultural burning and institutional fire management could be thought of as the differences between home cooking and fast food. Fast food is quick, cheap and produces the same product regardless of individual needs. Home cooking takes longer to prepare, can cater to individual needs, and can improve wellbeing.</p> <p>But restoring sustainable fire regimes based on the wisdom and practices of Indigenous people cannot be achieved overnight. Reaping the benefits of cultural burning to landscapes where colonialism has disrupted ancient fire traditions take time, effort and resources.</p> <p>It’s urgent remaining traditional fire practitioners are recognised for their invaluable knowledge and materially supported to continue caring for their Country. This includes:</p> <ul> <li>actively supporting Indigenous people to reside on their Country</li> <li>to pay them to undertake natural resource management including cultural burning</li> <li>creating pathways enabling Indigenous people separated from their country by colonialism to re-engage with fire management.</li> </ul> <p>Restoring landscapes with sustainable cultural burning traditions is a long-term project that will involve training and relearning ancient practices. There are extraordinary opportunities for Indigenous and non-Indigenous people alike to learn how to Care for Country.</p> <hr /> <p><em>The authors gratefully acknowledge the contribution of Victor Steffensen, the Lead Fire Practitioner at the Firesticks Alliance Indigenous Corporation, who reviewed this article.</em><!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/184562/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/david-bowman-4397" target="_blank" rel="noopener">David Bowman</a>, Professor of Pyrogeography and Fire Science, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-tasmania-888" target="_blank" rel="noopener">University of Tasmania</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/christopher-i-roos-1354187" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Christopher I. Roos</a>, Professor, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/southern-methodist-university-1988" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Southern Methodist University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/fay-johnston-90826" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Fay Johnston</a>, Professor, Menzies Institute for Medical Research, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-tasmania-888" target="_blank" rel="noopener">University of Tasmania</a></em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com" target="_blank" rel="noopener">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/new-research-in-arnhem-land-reveals-why-institutional-fire-management-is-inferior-to-cultural-burning-184562" target="_blank" rel="noopener">original article</a>.</em></p> <p><em>Image: @FireDiversity (Twitter)</em></p>

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“Can we find ways to create more unity?” Australia Day celebrations under review

<p dir="ltr">The way Australia Day is celebrated could majorly change in the city of Melbourne, as its council begins to assess how to mark the polarising holiday.</p> <p dir="ltr">Melbourne city council voted in favour of the motion to review how January 26 is celebrated, brought by Lord Mayor Sally Capp, on Tuesday night, as reported by <em><a href="https://www.news.com.au/national/victoria/politics/melbourne-city-council-reviewing-its-approach-to-australia-day/news-story/4219b7ec3eb4607fe2371a66f02a8883" target="_blank" rel="noopener">news.com.au</a></em>.</p> <p dir="ltr">The council will be looking to identify alternative options for events, communications and community engagement that could be introduced as soon as next year, seeking input from traditional owners, as well as state and federal governments.</p> <p dir="ltr">Councillor Capp acknowledged that Australia Day is a “polarising issue” and that “views are mixed” on celebrating it on January 26, and that consulting Indigenous people was important since their cultures are “essential” to Melbourne’s identity.</p> <p dir="ltr">“What are the ways we can celebrate being Australian and can we find ways to create more unity than division on 26 January?” she told <em>Sunrise </em>on Wednesday.</p> <p dir="ltr">“That is the process we are undertaking with options to come back on September 6.”</p> <p dir="ltr">She stated that, although local councils “cannot change” the date of Australia Day, she believed that it was important for local governments to be involved.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I believe it’s important for local governments, as the level of government closest to our people, to be active participants in this important debate,” she said.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I know that celebrating Australia Day on January 26 is important to a lot of people, as much as it’s hurtful to a lot of people.</p> <p dir="ltr">“The debate is maturing and it is time for us to be more considered about what happens on January 26.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“What we can do is consider the views of our community, of traditional owners and the approaches of other levels of government.</p> <p dir="ltr">“We can incorporate the views of stakeholders and we can look to use that information to consider what we will do on January 26.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Tuesday night’s motion received strong support from council members, with Jason Cheng being the only member to abstain from voting.</p> <p dir="ltr">“My thoughts are it’s an issue for the federal government,” Cr Chang said.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I understand the sentiment and respect my colleagues’ views on this, but I also feel we need to focus on what’s happening in the city of Melbourne right now.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Businesses are all struggling … myself included.”</p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-882defce-7fff-8b59-dca9-c79ce5a33ca7"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Now that the motion has passed, an options paper will be prepared and presented to the council’s Future Melbourne Committee on September 6, which will include details of how Australia Day could be managed from next year onwards.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Getty Images</em></p>

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New Zealand town dubbed one of ‘World’s Greatest Places’

<p dir="ltr">Queenstown has been named one of the “World’s Greatest Places” by <em>Time Magazine</em>, making it one of 50 “extraordinary travel destinations” from around the world that have been recognised.</p> <p dir="ltr">The South Island town is the only New Zealand destination to make the list, joining the likes of the Galapagos Islands, Seoul, Detroit, Nairobi, and Toronto.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Time</em> compiled the list from a collection of nominations from its international network of correspondents and contributors that included countries, regions, cities and towns that offer new and exciting experiences.</p> <p dir="ltr">Mat Woods, the chief executive of Destination Queenstown, was delighted by the news.</p> <p dir="ltr">“International recognition like this is a great reminder that we live in one of the world’s greatest places … It’s fantastic to be acknowledged internationally, especially after a tough couple of years,” he said.</p> <p dir="ltr">As for Australia, two locations made the list. Unsurprisingly, the Great Barrier Reef made the list, along with Fremantle in Western Australia.</p> <p dir="ltr">To see<em> Time</em>’s full list of the World’s Greatest Places, head <a href="https://time.com/collection/worlds-greatest-places-2022/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-3361e7d6-7fff-9d4e-8d16-dffca9a1ccac"></span></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: @federico_pinna_photography (Instagram)</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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“Come to the theatre!”: Why the survival of the arts post-Covid relies on us

<p dir="ltr">The Covid-19 pandemic - and the lockdowns that were introduced to curb its spread - has taken a wide-ranging toll on individuals, companies, and even entire industries – with the field of creative arts no exception.</p> <p dir="ltr">For instance, even as many of us have returned to a mask-free existence that comes close to our pre-pandemic lifestyles, those working on Opera Australia’s latest season of productions are still following strict precautions – just so that the show can go on.</p> <p dir="ltr"><a href="https://opera.org.au/artist/shaun-rennie/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Shaun Rennie</a>, assistant director of <em>Il Trovatore</em>, tells <em>OverSixty </em>that while a “more relaxed” view of Covid is great for audiences, catching the virus can be particularly devastating for those putting on the show.</p> <p dir="ltr">“It's a really interesting time in the arts, because I sort of feel that, for the most part, the rest of the world has become much more relaxed about COVID, and is getting on with things and has a lot less fear around COVID, or even going out, or catching it,” he says. “That’s great, because audiences are confident and then coming back.</p> <p dir="ltr">“The challenge is that in the arts, if Covid does get into a company, it can still be really devastating. And so I still find there’s quite a bit of a disconnect between my life outside the theatre and coming into work.”</p> <p dir="ltr"><a href="https://opera.org.au/artist/warwick-doddrell/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Warwick Doddrell</a>, assistant director of <em>La Traviata,</em> was the staging director for <em>Turandot </em>at the start of 2022 and says they didn’t expect to have to face a Covid outbreak.</p> <p dir="ltr">“With Turandot at the start of the year … we thought that COVID was kind of over, naively,” Doddrell recalls.</p> <p dir="ltr">“But then very quickly we started to lose people. And just by the nature of how the state government policies and work and health recommendations were at the time, it was all very serious, [with] very serious impacts on [the] rehearsal schedule, so we would lose days at a time because we had to do … all the risk management. So we would lose multiple days at a sudden notice.</p> <p dir="ltr">“For us, that meant we had to be really adaptive. And we had to suddenly try to get through as much content as we possibly could at a bare minimum kind of level because … this might be the only day that we have to do Act Three. So let's do Act Three as best we possibly can. Let's get to the end. So that at least next time we've got you, people have some idea of where they're going and what the story is that they're telling, even if it's not as detailed as perhaps we would like it to be. But that there is something there; that there is some semblance of a story that we're telling.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Mask-wearing, daily RATs (Rapid Antigen Tests), and even keeping the cast members, musicians, and crew separate between productions are normal aspects of work now, says <a href="https://opera.org.au/artist/shane-placentino/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Shane Placentino</a>, revival director for <em>Madama Butterfly</em>.</p> <p dir="ltr">“It's become the norm to test every day, to wear a mask, to sanitise your hands, to wash your hands, all those sorts of things, and that's impacted everyone from makeup and hair especially, and wardrobe, mechanists, stage crew, and orchestra,” he says.</p> <p dir="ltr">Having worked as revival director and choreographer for <em>The Merry Widow</em>, which marked the return of operas to the stage in 2021, Placentino says the rules that were initially met with some resistance are now routine, with the emphasis on reducing the risk of clusters and ensuring that audiences feel safe enough to come back and watch live performances. </p> <p dir="ltr">“We're finding that more and more people are coming back to live theatre,” Placentino says.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I think people are feeling comfortable now that the majority of the population are vaccinated or at least double vaccinated.”</p> <p dir="ltr">With many of us turning to streaming entertainment during lockdown, Placentino says it’s shown that the demand for the arts has still been there throughout.</p> <p dir="ltr">“It seemed to be a mix of people that were craving to come back and see live theatre. The thing that I found quite interesting during those lockdowns was how much streaming of the arts, through social media and internet and on TV, there was quite a lot of access to the arts,” he says.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Companies around the world gave access to productions that had been filmed or videoed and I thought that really indicated that people want to come back. They're just waiting for it to be safe – or safer.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Coming out of the lockdowns, Doddrell believes there’s an appetite for the arts but that companies have had to become more flexible and adaptable, which can come with some new costs.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I think it's going to be interesting to see [what] long, major or lasting changes this has on the industry,” he says.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Particularly because a lot of smaller companies, smaller work now had to have understudies and covers and such things, which was never something smaller companies did before, but now it's kind of your requirements. And it just makes things more expensive. And … if those costs are going to be permanent for the foreseeable future… that will drive up the cost of tickets … I think it's a really tricky situation. Because obviously, theatre is quite expensive compared to some of the other entertainment options people have these days.</p> <p dir="ltr">“And so I think the last thing we want is for prices to go out in such a way that it keeps audiences away.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Interestingly, many industry members were forced to find alternative work at the onset of the pandemic as show after show simply shut down – and yet many haven’t returned despite the curtains rising once more.</p> <p dir="ltr">“We have lost a lot of people in the industry at all levels,” Doddrell says. “People who couldn't just make it work, you know, so they had to find other jobs, they had to move on to something else, and they haven’t come back, which is, you know, good for new people to come in. But it's also [meant that] we've lost a lot of knowledge and a lot of expertise and a lot of history from people who've just had to move on.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Placentino says audiences continuing to come and watch operas, musicals and other live events as they return is crucial for people to come back to working in the arts and for these events to continue.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Initially, [attendance] numbers weren't as high as pre-COVID levels, but we're finding that now it's getting stronger and stronger. And obviously we hope that people feel really safe to come to the theatre and that they do,” Placentino explains.</p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-74476a43-7fff-86ec-a9db-0fa40cada35c"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">“The more the audience comes to see us, the more people we can employ. That's what we want to happen… so come to the theatre!”</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Jeff Busby</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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Top 8 cosy stays around Australia

<p dir="ltr">With record low temperatures this winter, staying inside and getting cosy is more appealing than ever.</p> <p dir="ltr">According to winter search data from Booking.com ANZ, those searching for their next travel destination are prioritising one thing over all else this winter: warmth.</p> <p dir="ltr">Staying cosy doesn’t just have to be limited to your own home and you can still travel without compromising on warmth.</p> <p dir="ltr">To help you pick your next winter destination, Toyota and Booking.com have compiled a list of the top eight cosiest stays around the country, meaning you can expand your horizons while rugged up.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>TASMANIA: Shanleys Huon Valley  </strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/shanleys.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr">Normally, suggesting going further south to Australia’s chilliest state to escape the cold weather would be met with puzzled looks. Hear us out: this place will make you change your mind. Only an hour’s drive from Hobart, the Shanleys Huon Valley villa is tucked away on a lush green property and decked out with a wood fireplace and a spa with a view – perfect for keeping cosy in the cold months! </p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>VICTORIA: KiNam Vinea – A Vineyard Farmhouse in the Yarra Valley</strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/327288174.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="650" /></p> <p dir="ltr">Located an hour’s drive from Melbourne, KiNam Vinea is the perfect spot to sit amongst the grapevines this winter! This gorgeous Yarra Valley farmhouse has some of the most stunning mountain views, and the perfect outdoor dining facilities to sit and enjoy it from with your family or friends.  </p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>VICTORIA: Warburton Digs  </strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/warburton.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="866" /></p> <p dir="ltr">Traditional meets modern in this gorgeous cottage in Warburton, just an hour and a half’s drive from Melbourne. Put your warmest puffer jacket on and take a hike along one of the many nearby hiking trails, or just curl up in front of the fireplace with a hot chocolate with your loved ones at Warburton Digs this cold season.  </p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>NSW: Chalet Alpina </strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/chalet-alpina.jpg" alt="" width="1200" height="900" /></p> <p dir="ltr">It doesn’t get any more winter-y than this: Chalet Alpina, only 10km from Snowy Mountains in Jindabyne – the top searched domestic snow destination in Australia, according to Booking.com ANZ Winter Search Data 2022 – this lodge has everything you’d expect from a cosy cold-weather-appropriate accommodation, including a fireplace, fur-lined armchairs and plenty of ski equipment storage. The perfect place to sit in and stay warm after a day on the slopes, Chalet Alpina is worth the five hours it’ll take you to drive there from Sydney. </p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>NSW: Panorama Jindabyne </strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/panorama-jindabyne.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="853" /></p> <p dir="ltr">If you’re going to stay somewhere new this winter, at least do it somewhere with a view! Panorama Jindabyne, no doubt named after the panoramic views of Lake Jindabyne and the Snowy Mountains, also boasts a spacious but cosy interior, complete with a restaurant and craft bar to enjoy while you watch the snow fall outside.  </p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>VIC: Jarrah Lodge  </strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/jarrah-lodge.jpg" alt="" width="1024" height="768" /></p> <p dir="ltr">Sick of seeing everyone’s Europe Instagram stories? Make them jealous back with this Jarrah Lodge; with the high-peaked rooftops, minimalist interior, and chilly weather this Scandinavian-style lodge with the best mountain views Victoria has to offer has all the additions to make your domestic winter trip worth it – and you only need to drive a couple hours out of Melbourne to get there! </p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>VIC: Altitude 221 </strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/altitiude.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="853" /></p> <p dir="ltr">Live like royalty with luxe four-poster beds, generously sized bathtubs, and a location to die for at Altitude 221. Located in Mansfield, just over two-and-a-half hours away from Melbourne by car (and a 45-minute drive from snow hub and Australia’s second-most searched domestic snow destination, Mount Buller), Altitude 221 offers the perfect spot for a cosy winter weekend away.  </p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>VIC: Lothlorien </strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/lothlorien.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="853" /></p> <p dir="ltr">Is it a winter getaway if you’re not submerging yourself in a body of hot water? Lothlorien, located in Mount Beauty (only four hours’ drive out of Melbourne), comes decked out with an outdoor hot tub with stunning views of the mountains. A full English/Irish breakfast is available every morning at the holiday home, in case you needed to warm up inside too!  </p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-fb0012f7-7fff-2bbf-c1bd-fd8e18b9101b"></span></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Images: Booking.com</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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Review: Il Trovatore at the Sydney Opera House

<p dir="ltr">Tarot, clowns, romance, and drama abound in Opera Australia’s rendition of <em>Il Trovatore</em>, the melodramatic tale created by famed operatic composer Guiseppe Verdi.</p> <p dir="ltr">Set in 15th-century Spain, <em>Il Trovatore</em> follows Manrico (Yonghoon Lee), a rebel soldier and troubadour who is in love with lady-in-waiting Leonora (Leah Crocetto), who has also caught the attention of the Count di Luna (Maim Aniskin).</p> <p dir="ltr">Some years before the opera is set, the Count’s father accused a Romani woman of bewitching one of his sons and had her burned at the stake, but not before her daughter, Azucena (Elena Gabouri), supposedly snatched his son and threw him into the fire as well.</p> <p dir="ltr">It is then revealed that Azucena had mistakenly burned her own child in the fire and had taken Manrico from the count and raised him as her own son.</p> <p dir="ltr">With Azucena urging him to exact revenge on the current Count, Manrico rescues Leonora from the Count and they plan to marry each other.</p> <p dir="ltr">However, when Azucena is arrested and Manrico is captured attempting to rescue her, Leonora is faced with the decision to make the ultimate sacrifice to save her beloved.</p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-bcdc5a5f-7fff-1384-592c-9b2d817d45bb"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Opera Australia’s rendition of this classic opera blends tradition with innovation: the setting shifts forward in time to the Spanish Civil War and traditional set pieces are replaced primarily with towering digital screens.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-cbdadbce-7fff-2ea2-a3fb-aab6cce5fa6e">Though this change in setting was captured well with the costuming, with the Count’s men donned in 40s era grey overcoats and armed with a mix of swords and pistols, the digital stagecraft captured the ambience of Il Trovatore more than a sense of place and came across as shallow in some moments.</span></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/il-trovatore1.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr">That said, the digital aspects weren’t without their positives, playing with the audience’s sense of space and highlighting important aspects of the story, with projections of a series of tarot cards (a nod to Romani culture), a rundown circus, and a disembodied clown head as notable examples.</p> <p dir="ltr">The rotating stage of the Opera House’s Joan Sutherland Theatre and select physical props and sets were used quite effectively to capture the dilapidated circus grounds and hospital. Meanwhile, silhouetting the cast to punctuate between scenes and songs and circus folk and henchmen frozen mid-fight showed how the cast could themselves become scenery.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-fa69e0eb-7fff-477f-808e-e83537b0973c"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">As for the cast themselves, Lee shone as the fierce troubadour, even when he seemed to falter and be visibly in pain on some notes. Gabouri’s casting as Azucena seemed a perfect fit, given her powerful vocals and the strength with which she played her character.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/trovatore-cast.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Yonghoon Lee (left) and Elena Gabouri (right) shine as Manrico and Azucena, and their chemistry as mother and son is electric.</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Aniskin’s cold and menacing portrayal of the Count came through particularly in the second act, while Crocetto’s incredible range helped her shine as the leading lady Leonora.</p> <p dir="ltr">The orchestra, led by Andrea Battistoni, were exceptional throughout in capturing the highs, lows, and intricacies of Verdi’s music.</p> <p dir="ltr">As a first-time opera goer, the need to look at the surtitles above the stage made it difficult to stay immersed, particularly as they seemed to translate the essence of what was being sung rather than the literal lyrics.</p> <p dir="ltr">Even so, Opera Australia’s rendition of Il Trovatore is engaging in its fusion of tradition and tech, and its stellar cast breathe life into a story that is just as relevant today as it was when it was first written.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-f73b4808-7fff-5ff4-dd47-827b2162d498"></span></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Il Trovatore</em> will be performed at the Sydney Opera House on select dates until July 30, with tickets available to purchase <a href="https://opera.org.au/productions/il-trovatore-sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Images: Keith Saunders</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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The Sydney Opera House unveils historic upgrades

<p id="docs-internal-guid-7079734f-7fff-28f3-48ba-27fd4d3951ee" dir="ltr">After being closed for two-and-a-half years of extensive renovations, the Sydney Opera House’s Concert Hall is finally ready to reopen to the public.</p> <p dir="ltr">Since closing in 2020, the venue has seen hundreds of construction workers, acousticians, and experts in architecture and heritage help deliver one of the biggest upgrades in nearly 50 years.</p> <p dir="ltr">“We’re thrilled to be welcoming the community back to the renewed Concert Hall,” Louise Herron AM, the CEO of Sydney Opera House, said in a <a href="https://www.sydneyoperahouse.com/content/Non-Indexed/media/newsroom/media-release-soh-unveils-historic-concert-hall-upgrade.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">statement</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Artists and audiences are set to experience world-class acoustics in a venue that is more accessible, safer and better equipped to present the full breadth of 21st century performance.”</p> <p dir="ltr">With more $190 million invested into the renewal project, improving acoustics and accessibility have been two major priorities.</p> <p dir="ltr">The old acrylic ‘donuts’ hanging above the stage have been replaced with magenta ‘acoustic petals’ - matching the Concert Hall seats - while a new lift and passageway now allows for wheelchair users and people with limited mobility to access all levels, including the Northern Foyer and its stunning harbour views.</p> <p dir="ltr">A state-of-the-art sound system and acoustic diffusion panels have also been installed throughout the venue, along with automated stage risers and other technology to make putting on a performance - whether it be an orchestra or musical - that much easier.</p> <p dir="ltr">Its reopening marks the final project in the Opera House’s Decade of Renewal, which has seen the World Heritage-listed building fitted with a range of improvements and new venues, all without interfering with the original concrete and structures.</p> <p dir="ltr">The venue will reopen to the public from July 20, marked by the return of the <a href="https://www.sydneyoperahouse.com/events/whats-on/sydney-symphony-orchestra/2022/simone-young-conducts-mahler-2.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Sydney Symphony Orchestra</a> performing Mahler’s <em>Second Symphony</em>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Images: Lisa Maree Williams (Getty Images), Daniel Boud, Anna Kucera</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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The Great Barrier Reef – what does a new Labor government mean for its future?

<p>The Great Barrier Reef was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1981, and with good reason – it’s the world’s largest single structure made by living organisms. It’s an Australian icon intrinsically tied to our national identity, but the reef is in danger due to the effects of climate change.</p> <p>Just this past summer it experienced its fourth mass-bleaching event in seven years, with 91% of the reef experiencing some level of bleaching according to the summer 2021-22 Reef Snapshot report.</p> <p>Every Federal election, the Great Barrier Reef becomes a bit of a poster child for climate change, but what does the recent change in government actually mean for its future? The Labor government’s climate policies are more ambitious than those of the Coalition, but will it be enough to save the reef from devastation? Are we finally taking steps in the right direction?</p> <h2>Climate change and its impact on the reef</h2> <p>The effects of climate change are being felt majorly by the Great Barrier Reef already. Especially apparent are the mass coral-bleaching events caused by increasing ocean temperatures as a result of global warming.</p> <p>“Corals can (and frequently do) recover from bleaching, but just like forest recovery after a bushfire, they need time, and the speed of the recovery can vary depending on the severity of the heatwave and the types of corals growing on the reef,” explains Dr Emma Kennedy, a research scientist in Coral Reef Ecology at the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS).</p> <p>But according to Dr Jodie Rummer, associate professor at the Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University, these events are only going to become more frequent.</p> <p>“With the trajectory that we’re on right now, what we’ll seeing by even the year 2044 is annual mass-bleaching events on the Great Barrier Reef, and coral reefs worldwide,” she says. “Even our more robust coral species require eight to 10 years to fully recover from these repeated heat waves.</p> <p>“We’re just losing that window of recovery for not only the coral reef and the coral organisms, but also all the other organisms that the coral reef supports.”</p> <p>Current greenhouse gas emissions trajectories indicate that globally we’re tracking towards an increase in global temperatures approaching 3°C above pre-industrial levels, by 2100.</p> <p>This is incompatible with healthy, thriving reefs. If warming exceeds 1.5°C  “we would lose the reef altogether,” warns Rummer.</p> <h2>Labor’s Great Barrier Reef policies</h2> <p>With a new government comes new targets and policies that affect the reef. To start with, let’s look at the funding.</p> <p>The Labor government has promised to invest almost $1.2 billion in reef preservation and restoration by 2030 – that’s an extra $194.5 million on top of the LNP’s existing $1 billion reef package.</p> <p>This money will be used to tackle issues such as pollution from agricultural runoff, a more sustainable fishing sector, funding scientific research into thermal-tolerant corals, and funding protection and restoration work by Indigenous ranger organisations.</p> <p>The government also plans to continue and double the funding of the Reef 2050 Plan, which was initially released in 2015 to address the concerns of the World Heritage Committee.</p> <p>“It’s an awful lot of money, but it actually isn’t a lot of money when you think of it like $100 million each year,” says Dr Maxine Newlands, political scientist at James Cook University, Australia. “That’s not very much given the size of the Great Barrier Reef and what needs to be done.”</p> <p>It’s also important to keep in mind that the electorates that fringe the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland are Liberal seats. It remains to be seen whether there will be any opposition to funds being directed at the Great Barrier Reef – or calls for it to be redirected elsewhere, such as to farming, instead.</p> <p>But while it’s important to be mindful of these second and tertiary stressors to the reef, and to be acting on them, if we’re not addressing the number-one stressor that the Great Barrier Reef is facing – climate change – we’re not getting to the heart of the problem.</p> <p>“No more band aids on arterial wounds,” emphasises Rummer.</p> <p>“So, the money is great,” she adds. “And in terms of research, management and policy, we absolutely need it right now.”</p> <p>But the ideal is money being allocated toward reducing impacts of climate change – like the triple threat of global warming, ocean acidification and declining ocean oxygen levels.</p> <h2>Emissions reductions targets must be increased</h2> <p>Speaking of the reef’s number-one stressor, the outcome of this election has started Australia moving towards more action on climate change.</p> <p>The Labor government’s energy plan includes a target of a 43% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from 2005 levels by 2030, which is far more ambitious than the previous 26% to 28% target set by the Coalition. The previous government’s policies were consistent with 3˚C of warming, whilst Labor’s policy is consistent with 2˚C, according to a report by Climate Analytics.</p> <p>It’s definitely a step in the right direction, but not enough to ensure the survival of the reef. Instead, the Greens’ target of a 74% emissions reduction, and teal independents’ targets of a 60% reduction, are consistent with limiting warming to 1.5°C.</p> <p>With an unprecedented number of Greens candidates and the “teal wave” of independents elected into the crossbench, it’s a sign of shifting public sentiment.</p> <p>“It’s put a bit of a magnifying glass onto the policies of the two major parties, because while I think climate change is always an issue, it’s become more prominent in this election,” says Newlands.</p> <p>According to Newlands, the presence of these climate-forward members is likely to “either expedite the current target of net zero by 2050, or at least have that conversation of ‘well, that’s not enough but what is?’</p> <p>“Having those independents in will keep climate change on the political agenda. So, it puts pressure on particularly Labor, but Liberals as well, to address that.”</p> <p>The 2020s are a critical decade for climate and we’re already two years in. But we have the opportunity to catalyse action on climate change and take the necessary steps to ensure the continued survival of the Great Barrier Reef.</p> <p>“No other developed country in the world has more to lose from inaction on climate change than we do,” says Rummer. “But we also have the most to gain.</p> <p>“It’s important to look forward into the future with a lot of optimism.”</p> <p>This article originally appeared on <a href="https://cosmosmagazine.com/earth/great-barrier-reef-labor-government/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">cosmosmagazine.com</a> and was written by Imma Perfetto.</p> <p><em>Image: Shutterstock</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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How a new art project in Bathurst is embracing the many identities of the town

<p>For many, Bathurst’s Mount Panorama is exclusively a car racing venue. For Indigenous Australians it is a place called Wahluu, where First Nations women once offered their sons for tribal initiation.</p> <p>It is a cherished Wiradyuri territory that hosts dreaming and creation stories. Earlier this year, further development on the site <a href="https://www.sbs.com.au/nitv/article/2021/05/03/wahluu-womens-site-be-protected-says-federal-environment-minister">was blocked</a>, with the federal government acknowledging the cultural significance of the location for the Wiradyuri people.</p> <p>In some respects, the conflicting identity of Bathurst’s mountain can be reconciled through the forms of masculinity it represents: the male-centric sport of car racing – so central to the town’s present-day image – and the rite of passage of young Aboriginal men into adulthood.</p> <p>Now, a new art project, <a href="https://kateofthesmiths.com.au/fast-cars-dirty-beats/">Fast Cars &amp; Dirty Beats</a> is navigating these cultural differences by fostering a sense of community.</p> <p>Created by artistic director Kate Smith, Fast Cars &amp; Dirty Beats embraces Mount Panorama’s/Wahluu’s dual identity that, for some, is representative of a cultural divide between black and white Australia. Smith’s vision is not culturally constrained, but rather expressive of a location that is complex and multicultural.</p> <p>Liaising with Bathurst Wiradyuri Elders, Smith and her artistic collaborators have developed a series of community-focused projects revolving around the cultural significance of Wahluu/Mount Panorama.</p> <p>One of these initiatives, Mountain Tales, was launched on the first of July as part of Bathurst’s Winter Festival. Mountain Tales is the culmination of a year-long community engagement connecting local schoolchildren, teachers and parents with skilled craftspeople and musicians, fashioning decorative lanterns and the cultivation of a drumming community.</p> <p><strong>A lantern procession</strong></p> <p>Although it was raining for the July launch, more than 300 locals formed a dramatic lantern procession on the cold winter’s night.</p> <p>I was swept up in the pageantry unravelling across the CBD, eventually settling at Bathurst’s historical <a href="https://tremainsmill.com/">Tremain’s Mill</a>. Here the community proudly displayed their beacons of light, paying homage to the Chinese presence in Bathurst since the 1800s.</p> <p>Supporting the procession, Rob Shannon’s drummers created a collective heartbeat, fostering a sense of joy and belonging.</p> <p>After this ceremony of light and sound, members of the community told stories about the significance of Mount Panorama/Wahluu. Yarns were shared concerning the mountain being a place where locals experienced a first kiss or participated in some youthful skylarking.</p> <figure class="align-center zoomable"><a href="https://images.theconversation.com/files/473106/original/file-20220707-22-kkwl50.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=1000&amp;fit=clip"><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/473106/original/file-20220707-22-kkwl50.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/473106/original/file-20220707-22-kkwl50.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=800&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473106/original/file-20220707-22-kkwl50.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=800&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473106/original/file-20220707-22-kkwl50.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=800&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473106/original/file-20220707-22-kkwl50.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=1005&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473106/original/file-20220707-22-kkwl50.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=1005&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473106/original/file-20220707-22-kkwl50.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=1005&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="A paper lantern in the shape of a car." /></a><figcaption><span class="caption">Cars are central to Australia’s image of Bathurst – but they’re not the whole story.</span> <span class="attribution"><span class="source">Kate Smith</span></span></figcaption></figure> <p>Wiradyuri Elder Wirribee Aunty Leanna Carr-Smith explained to the group how the area plays host to both women’s and men’s business. But such stories are only for the ears of Indigenous women and men.</p> <p>There is a secrecy about Wahluu. Some stories are off limits to white Australians.</p> <p><strong>Wiradyuri Ngayirr Ngurambang – Sacred Country</strong></p> <p>The most breathtaking project launched at the Mountain Tales event is Aunty Leanna/Wirribee and Nicole Welch’s collaboration with Smith, <a href="https://www.dropbox.com/s/4hanss4771t8aim/SacredCountryV6_withAudio.mp4?dl=0">Wiradyuri Ngayirr Ngurambang – Sacred Country</a>, a film emblazoned across Tremain’s Mill.</p> <p>The old mill precinct is a reminder of colonisation and its violence. For this occasion it operated as a backdrop through which Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians connected. Beaming the film’s panoramic landscapes across this built environment juxtaposed the two cultures.</p> <p>Considering the urgency of global warming, the film brings together drone footage of Wahluu/Mount Panorama and aerial photography of other Indigenous landscapes in the region. It is an ethereal perspective. The soundscape is as rich and textured as the landscape, conveying an extraordinary, yet fragile, beauty.</p> <figure class="align-center zoomable"><a href="https://images.theconversation.com/files/473108/original/file-20220707-12-yw20iu.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=1000&amp;fit=clip"><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/473108/original/file-20220707-12-yw20iu.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/473108/original/file-20220707-12-yw20iu.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=516&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473108/original/file-20220707-12-yw20iu.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=516&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473108/original/file-20220707-12-yw20iu.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=516&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473108/original/file-20220707-12-yw20iu.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=649&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473108/original/file-20220707-12-yw20iu.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=649&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/473108/original/file-20220707-12-yw20iu.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=649&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="Film still." /></a><figcaption><span class="caption">Projected onto the wall of Tremain’s Mill, Wiradyuri Ngayirr Ngurambang – Sacred Country is a meeting of Indigenous landscapes with colonial Australian history.</span> <span class="attribution"><span class="source">Kate Smith</span></span></figcaption></figure> <p>Wiradyuri Ngayirr Ngurambang – Sacred Country also explores shared understandings between First Nations and non-First Nations women. Their interracial connection is enacted through a seamless editing style that bridges the Tarana landscape to the Wahluu/Macquarie River, and then eventually to Wahluu/Mount Panorama.</p> <p>The film’s boundless landscapes evoke an all-embracing hospitality that traverses cultural differences. Sometimes the imagery creates vaginal shapes that feminises the country. The land and its creatures come across as alive and vibrant.</p> <p>Sky and earth are mirrored, inspiring our contemplation of eternity and the Indigenous custodianship of Country.</p> <p>Departing later that night, I pondered eternity. One lifetime is nothing compared to 65,000 years of Indigenous connection to Country. This awareness was both profound and comforting. But the night of collective celebration and storytelling also encouraged me, and no doubt others, to delight in life’s briefest moments.</p> <p><em>Wiradyuri Ngayirr Ngurambang – Sacred Country is playing at Tremain’s Mill, Bathurst, until July 17.</em> <!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/185860/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/suzie-gibson-111690" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Suzie Gibson</a>, Senior Lecturer in English Literature, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/charles-sturt-university-849" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Charles Sturt University</a></em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com" target="_blank" rel="noopener">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/how-a-new-art-project-in-bathurst-is-embracing-the-many-identities-of-the-town-185860" target="_blank" rel="noopener">original article</a>.</em></p> <p><em>Image: Kate Smith</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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Here’s what happening across New Zealand in July

<p dir="ltr">Though the start of July brings with it the peak of winter’s chill and darkness, there’s still plenty to do across New Zealand this month.</p> <p dir="ltr">From Christmas festivities and a slew of top-notch films to nights of looking to the stars, here are some events you won’t want to miss.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Festival of Christmas (Greytown)</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">This month-long festival features a program of spectacular lights, night markets, workshops, parties and activities celebrating Christmas in Greytown.</p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-f68069ab-7fff-0230-b138-1305a3703ed2"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">With all the hallmarks of a northern hemisphere Christmas, you can expect European markets, warming drinks and festive treats, the Festival of Christmas also has a distinct Kiwi flavour, with celebrations of Matariki also featured.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/xmas-festival.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: @greytownvillage (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">This year’s theme is Gingerbread, with highlights including:</p> <ul> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation">The Great Gingerbread Hunt, where visitors can enter a competition to search for a brightly-lit eight-foot gingerbread man and go in the draw to win some amazing prizes.</p> </li> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation">Cocktails and Comedy - a rotating program of top comedians will entertain you as you enjoy a two-course dinner and Greytown Gin Cocktail.</p> </li> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation">Family Fun at Cobbletones, where you can flex your baking muscles at the Great Gingerbread Bake Off on July 9 and step back in time with A Very Victorian Christmas on July 16.</p> </li> </ul> <p dir="ltr">For more information about this year’s program, head <a href="https://www.wellingtonnz.com/experience/events/festival-of-christmas/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>New Zealand International Film Festival</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">Technically starting at the end of July, the New Zealand International Film Festival will be screening seventy feature films and four collections of short films in Auckland from July 28 until August 7 before touring the rest of the country through August.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-4f12eae9-7fff-7efe-2f0b-8ba11eb7ddfa"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">The festival will be opened by the premiere of <em>Muru</em>, the much-anticipated action-drama from local filmmaker Tearepa Kahi.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/nzff.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>The New Zealand International Film Festival will kick off in Auckland from July 28. Image: Fire of Love (NZFF)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Other titles will include films direct from Cannes, award-winners from this year’s Berlin Film Festival, and a collection of New Zealand docos and feature films.</p> <p dir="ltr">Tickets for Auckland’s sessions are available for sale from July 14, while tickets for Christchurch, Wellington and Dunedin’s sessions will be available from July 15, 18, and 25. </p> <p dir="ltr">The full program of films and information about the festival can be found <a href="https://www.nziff.co.nz/nziff-2022/auckland/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>The Snugs</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">Though it might be chilly outside right now, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a night out - and the return of <a href="https://www.eventfinda.co.nz/2022/the-snugs/auckland#when" target="_blank" rel="noopener">The Snugs</a> makes it even easier.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-b4f54d34-7fff-9ac8-87b3-0f031002c6ed"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Each transparent dome is kitted out with blankets and heaters, and can seat up to six people.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/snugs.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Auckland Live</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Plus, when you book your Snug you’ll be able to choose from a wide selection of food platters, beverage packages, and other add-ons, with a special Matariki menu available until July 13 and an exclusive Elemental AKL menu available from July 14-31. Each booking requires a minimum spend of $80 for sessions before 4pm and $130 after 4pm required.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Our Night Sky: See the Sky Above Auckland and Beyond</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">See Auckland in a new light this winter with the 360-degree display of New Zealand’s skies at Our Night Sky, the latest experience at Stardome Observatory and Planetarium.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-cf3ecb14-7fff-b3c3-0f82-3fc0b87657db"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Suitable for ages 5+, the experience will take kids (and kids at heart) on an exploration of the stars, planets and the universe and even shows the placement of stars on the day you visit.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/stars-july.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Stardome Observatory and Planetarium</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Visitors are encouraged to ask questions and bookings are essential for each show, which run Wednesday through Sunday throughout July.</p> <p dir="ltr">To find out more and book your tickets, head <a href="https://www.stardome.org.nz/movie/our-night-sky" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-c0c279bf-7fff-cc9f-140a-f61348e237b6"></span></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Images: NZFF / Stardome Observatory and Planetarium</em></p>

Domestic Travel

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Here’s what’s happening across Australia in July

<p dir="ltr">With July just starting, there is plenty to do no matter where you are in the country this month.</p> <p dir="ltr">From festivals of light and snow to public art installations and activities to take part in, here’s what’s happening across Australia this July.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Illuminate Adelaide</strong></p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-4ceb885d-7fff-fdb6-0faf-ad0fd47d320a"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">As one of the country’s newest festivals, Illuminate Adelaide is a city-wide celebration packed with art, lights, sounds, and creativity.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/adelaide-illuminate.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Lights, sounds, and immersive experiences are all on the cards at this year’s Illuminate Adelaide festival. You can even get up close to towering glowing creatures! Images: @illuminateadelaide (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Highlights of this year’s program include:</p> <ul> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation"><a href="https://www.illuminateadelaide.com/program/season-2022/base-camp/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Base Camp</a>, a pop-attraction in Victoria Square, which boasts an ice-skating rink open day and night and Electric Playground, consisting of three immersive installations: Neon Village, SEEP, and ORBIT.</p> </li> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation"><a href="https://www.illuminateadelaide.com/program/season-2022/light-creatures/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Light Creatures</a>, where giant glowing animals take over Adelaide Zoo along with some of the zoo’s furry and feathery residents.</p> </li> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation"><a href="https://www.illuminateadelaide.com/program/season-2022/light-cycles/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Light Cycles</a>, which sees the Adelaide Botanic Gardens transformed into an after-dark transcendent experience where technology and nature meet.</p> </li> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation"><a href="https://www.illuminateadelaide.com/program/season-2022/digital-garden-mount-gambier/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Digital Garden</a> takes over Mount Gambier’s cultural centre once again with a captivating program of installations, projections and interactive lighting created by local and international artists.</p> </li> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation"><a href="https://www.illuminateadelaide.com/program/season-2022/lacunae/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Lacunae</a>, a free art installation where a live-feed shares silhouettes and music simultaneously from different locations, meaning people across South Australia can communicate and dance with each other.</p> </li> </ul> <p dir="ltr">For a full program and information about tickets, head <a href="https://www.illuminateadelaide.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Darwin Fringe Festival</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">The annual festival celebrating Darwin’s arts scene is returning once again this year, with ten days of theatre, cabaret and burlesque, music, art, circus and dance planned.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-05ead01b-7fff-1f3b-0885-dd096a76bc15"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Highlights include a free networking night for artists, roller disco in Civic Park (though it is BYO skates), a zine fair, and a slew of top-notch comedians - including a showcase of Darwin’s teen comics.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/Darwin-fringe.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>The Darwin Fringe Festival lineup includes comedian Di Barkas’ show, ‘Oops’, and the roving performances at Fringes of Mindil. Images: Di Barkas (Facebook) / Darwin Fringe Festival</em></p> <p dir="ltr">The festival will also include a variety of night-time events, including raving performances and fire shows at Fringes of Mindil, as well as art exhibits and even installations where visitors' stories and dreams are turned into artworks.</p> <p dir="ltr">Darwin Fringe Festival runs from July 8-17, with more information available <a href="https://darwinfringe.org.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Mackay Festival of Arts</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">If you’re looking to immerse yourself in art of all kinds, Mackay’s annual Festival of Arts could be perfect.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-6f19fdb1-7fff-3e67-c031-ea1c4184759d"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Celebrating its 35th anniversary this year, the festival program includes fan favourites such as the <a href="https://www.themecc.com.au/mackay-festivals/events/mackay_festivals_of_arts/wisely_wine_and_food_day" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Wisely Wine &amp; Food Day</a>, the <a href="https://www.themecc.com.au/mackay-festivals/events/mackay_festivals_of_arts/friends_of_the_mecc_jazz_brunch" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Friends of the MECC Jazz Brunch</a>, and the vibrant displays and installations at <a href="https://www.themecc.com.au/mackay-festivals/events/mackay_festivals_of_arts/daly_bay_illuminate" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Daly Bay Illuminate</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/mackay-festival.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>The Daly Bay Illuminate (left) and Barbaroi (right) are just two of the highlights of this year’s program. Images: @mackay_festivals (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">New additions to the lineup cover everything from art to trivia, with highlights including:</p> <ul> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation"><a href="https://www.themecc.com.au/mackay-festivals/events/mackay_festivals_of_arts/wonder_rooms" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Wonder Rooms</a> - an installation of shipping containers converted into selfie museums and filled with works created by Queensland-based artists, with five rooms to discover across the Mackay region.</p> </li> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation"><a href="https://www.themecc.com.au/mackay-festivals/events/mackay_festivals_of_arts/barbaroi" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Barbaroi</a> is a performance where contemporary circus meets physical theatre, featuring acrobatics, aerials and circus acts.</p> </li> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation"><a href="https://www.themecc.com.au/mackay-festivals/events/mackay_festivals_of_arts/read_the_room" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Read the Room</a>, a quiz show at the Ambassador Hotel that sees guests answer curly trivia questions through their phones, with panel guests then needing to guess which way the Room will swing.</p> </li> <li dir="ltr" aria-level="1"> <p dir="ltr" role="presentation"><a href="https://www.hauntmackay.com.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Haunt Cabaret</a> - Mackay’s permanent Dinner Theatre hosts dinners with a show every Friday and Saturday night, with its current show, ‘FANTASY’, coinciding with the festival.</p> </li> </ul> <p dir="ltr">To see the full program for the Mackay Festival of Arts, head <a href="https://www.themecc.com.au/mackay-festivals/events/mackay_festivals_of_arts" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Anything But Square: Under Surveillance (Melbourne)</strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-a2b95bdc-7fff-8f9e-ca71-87d05202657f"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">With a theme of surveillance from our devices, homes and streets, this intriguing festival will be taking over Melbourne’s Federation Square until early August, complete with a towering, eight-metre-high creepy sculpture of a head covered in giant eyes.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/surveillance.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Free film screenings and a creepy, everwatching sculpture are two features of the Anything But Square 2022 program. Images: @fed.square (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Other highlights include Dance Dystopia, a series of Friday night DJ sessions with free loaded hot chocolates and eye-themed sweets; Surveillance Film Festival with free outdoor screenings of movies catering to the whole family; Secret Workshops, with a eye-theed program including jewellery making, paint and sip classes, and embroidery.</p> <p dir="ltr">For more information about the Anything But Square: Under Surveillance program, head <a href="https://fedsquare.com/events/anything-but-square-under-surveillance" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>The Snow Festival Sydney</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">150 tonnes of real snow is making its way to North Sydney’s Greenwood Hotel for Snow Festival 2022. </p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-07f8cf95-7fff-b4e7-9c60-7a6310179fe8"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">The festival also welcomes the largest ice rink the area has ever seen, with free ice skating all day and night (and coaches to show you the ropes), as well as figure skating performances and live music rink-side.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/snow-fest.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Snow, music, drinks and skates abound at North Sydney’s Snow Festival. Image: @greenwoodhotel (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">On top of the wintery goodness, the festival will also include special sponsor parties, gondolas, skate-up Fireball whiskey bars, plenty of activities for the kids, free-flowing Champagne, and inflatable polar bears.</p> <p dir="ltr">To find out more or book a table, head <a href="https://greenwoodhotel.com/snow-festival/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Bicheno Beams Tasmania</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">The family-friendly light festival is returning once again to Bicheno this winter, with not one, but two different light shows on display on alternating nights.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-85b48890-7fff-d2bc-eca4-dcb6f137ed52"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Due to the festival’s proximity to Bicheno’s adorable penguins, the festival has adopted a silent disco approach, encouraging visitors to bring along a device to stream the soundtrack to and a pair of headphones, as well as woollies, a torch and a thermos of hot chocolate to stay warm as the night turns chilly.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/07/bicheno-beams.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Two light shows feature at this year’s Bicheno Beams festival. Images: @bichenobeams (Instagram)</em></p> <p dir="ltr">If you can’t make it down, you can still enjoy the lights from the comfort of home. Bicheno Beams will be streaming live every night from 6pm.</p> <p dir="ltr">You can find out more about Bicheno Beams <a href="https://bichenobeams.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-cb5afff4-7fff-14e7-7637-772c324e6ea7"></span></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

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This giant kangaroo once roamed New Guinea – descended from an Australian ancestor that migrated millions of years ago

<p>Long ago, almost up until the end of the last ice age, a peculiar giant kangaroo roamed the mountainous rainforests of New Guinea.</p> <p>Now, research to be <a href="https://doi.org/10.1080/03721426.2022.2086518" target="_blank" rel="noopener">published</a> on Thursday by myself and colleagues suggests this kangaroo was not closely related to modern Australian kangaroos. Rather, it represents a previously unknown type of primitive kangaroo unique to New Guinea.</p> <p><strong>The age of megafauna</strong></p> <p>Australia used to be home to all manner of giant animals called megafauna, until most of them went extinct about 40,000 years ago. These megafauna lived alongside animals we now consider characteristic of the Australian bush – kangaroos, koalas, crocodiles and the like – but many were larger species of these.</p> <p>There were giant wombats called <em>Phascolonus</em>, 2.5-metre-tall short-faced kangaroos, and the 3-tonne <em>Diprotodon optatum</em> (the largest marsupial ever). In fact, some Australian megafaunal species, such as the red kangaroo, emu and cassowary, survive through to the modern day.</p> <p>The fossil megafauna of New Guinea are considerably less well-studied than those of Australia. But despite being shrouded in mystery, New Guinea’s fossil record has given us hints of fascinating and unusual animals whose evolutionary stories are entwined with Australia’s.</p> <p>Palaeontologists have done sporadic expeditions and fossil digs in New Guinea, including digs by American and Australian researchers in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s.</p> <p>It was during an archaeological excavation in the early 1970s, led by Mary-Jane Mountain, that two jaws of an extinct giant kangaroo were unearthed. A young researcher (now professor) named Tim Flannery called the species <em>Protemnodon nombe</em>.</p> <p>The fossils Flannery described are about 20,000–50,000 years old. They come from the Nombe Rockshelter, an archaeological and palaeontological site in the mountains of central Papua New Guinea. This site also delivered fossils of another kangaroo and giant four-legged marsupials called diprotodontids.</p> <p><strong>An unexpected discovery</strong></p> <p>Flinders University Professor Gavin Prideaux and I recently re-examined the fossils of <em>Protemnodon nombe</em> and found something unexpected. This strange kangaroo was not a species of the genus <em>Protemnodon</em>, which used to live all over Australia, from the Kimberley to Tasmania. It was something a lot more primitive and unknown.</p> <p>In particular, its unusual molars with curved enamel crests set it apart from all other known kangaroos. We moved the species into a brand new genus unique to New Guinea and (very creatively) renamed it <em>Nombe nombe</em>.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://player.vimeo.com/video/724328370" width="500" height="281" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe><figcaption><em><span class="caption">A 3D surface scan of a specimen of Nombe nombe, specifically a fossilised lower jaw from central Papua New Guinea. (Courtesy of Papua New Guinea Museum and Art Gallery, Port Moresby).</span></em></figcaption></figure> <p>Our findings show <em>Nombe</em> may have evolved from an ancient form of kangaroo that migrated into New Guinea from Australia in the late Miocene epoch, some 5–8 million years ago.</p> <p>In those days, the islands of New Guinea and Australia were connected by a land bridge due to lower sea levels – whereas today they’re separated by the Torres Strait.</p> <p>This “bridge” allowed early Australian mammals, including megafauna, to migrate to New Guinea’s rainforests. When the Torres Strait flooded again, these animal populations became disconnected from their Australian relatives and evolved separately to suit their tropical and mountainous New Guinean home.</p> <p>We now consider <em>Nombe</em> to be the descendant of one of these ancient lineages of kangaroos. The squat, muscular animal lived in a diverse mountainous rainforest with thick undergrowth and a closed canopy. It evolved to eat tough leaves from trees and shrubs, which gave it a thick jawbone and strong chewing muscles.</p> <p>The species is currently only known from two fossil lower jaws. And much more remains to be discovered. Did <em>Nombe</em> hop like modern kangaroos? Why did it go extinct?</p> <p>As is typical of palaeontology, one discovery inspires an entire host of new questions.</p> <p><strong>Strange but familiar animals</strong></p> <p>Little of the endemic animal life of New Guinea is known outside of the island, even though it is very strange and very interesting. Very few Australians have much of an idea of what’s there, just over the strait.</p> <p>When I went to the Papua New Guinea Museum in Port Moresby early in my PhD, I was thrilled by the animals I encountered. There are several living species of large, long-nosed, worm-eating echidna – one of which weighs up to 15 kilograms.</p> <figure class="align-center zoomable"><a href="https://images.theconversation.com/files/471027/original/file-20220627-22-91nec3.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=1000&amp;fit=clip"><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/471027/original/file-20220627-22-91nec3.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/471027/original/file-20220627-22-91nec3.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=451&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/471027/original/file-20220627-22-91nec3.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=451&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/471027/original/file-20220627-22-91nec3.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=451&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/471027/original/file-20220627-22-91nec3.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=567&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/471027/original/file-20220627-22-91nec3.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=567&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/471027/original/file-20220627-22-91nec3.jpeg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=567&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="Author Isaac Kerr poses for a photo, holding an Australian giant kangaroo jaw in his left hand" /></a><figcaption><em><span class="caption">I’m excited to start digging in New Guinea’s rainforests!</span> <span class="attribution"><span class="license">Author provided</span></span></em></figcaption></figure> <p>There are also dwarf cassowaries and many different wallaby, tree kangaroo and possum species that don’t exist in Australia – plus many more in the fossil record.</p> <p>We tend to think of these animals as being uniquely Australian, but they have other intriguing forms in New Guinea.</p> <p>As an Australian biologist, it’s both odd and exhilarating to see these “Aussie” animals that have expanded into new and weird forms in another landscape.</p> <p>Excitingly for me and my colleagues, <em>Nombe nombe</em> may breathe some new life into palaeontology in New Guinea. We’re part of a small group of researchers that was recently awarded a grant to undertake three digs at two different sites in eastern and central Papua New Guinea over the next three years.</p> <p>Working with the curators of the Papua New Guinea Museum and other biologists, we hope to inspire young local biology students to study palaeontology and discover new fossil species. If we’re lucky, there may even be a complete skeleton of <em>Nombe nombe</em> waiting for us.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/185778/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/isaac-alan-robert-kerr-1356949" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Isaac Alan Robert Kerr</a>, PhD Candidate for Palaeontology, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/flinders-university-972" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Flinders University</a></em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com" target="_blank" rel="noopener">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/this-giant-kangaroo-once-roamed-new-guinea-descended-from-an-australian-ancestor-that-migrated-millions-of-years-ago-185778" target="_blank" rel="noopener">original article</a>.</em></p> <p><em>Image: Supplied</em></p>

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Three operas you won’t want to miss at the Sydney Opera House

<p dir="ltr">The onset of short days and chilly nights might have put a damper on plans for heading outside, but that doesn’t mean you have to stay home all winter.</p> <p dir="ltr">Whether you’re an operatic expert or a first-time visitor, Opera Australia’s winter season at the Sydney Opera House offers a trio of top quality operas to entice and delight.</p> <p dir="ltr">From dystopian re-imaginations to digital productions, here’s what’s in-store at the Opera House’s intimate Joan Sutherland Theatre this month.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong><em>Madama Butterfly </em>(June 29-July 30)</strong></p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-268094a8-7fff-f480-eb7b-c6f5d22a0b86"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">The iconic opera from Giacomo Puccini has been reimagined as a futuristic dystopia by director Graeme Murphy, boasting striking costume designs and towering robotic servants against a backdrop of dynamic, seven-metre tall LED screens.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/06/syd-opera-butterfly.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Sae-Kyung Rim as Cio-Cio-San and the Opera Australia Chorus in Opera Australia’s 2022 production of Madama Butterfly at the Sydney Opera House. Image: Guy Davies </em></p> <p dir="ltr">Starring South Korean soprano Sae-Kyung Rim as Cio-Cio-San, a 15-year-old girl who is set to marry US naval officer Pinkerton (Diego Torre), who intends to leave her when he finds a proper American wife.</p> <p dir="ltr">The story of <em><a href="https://www.sydneyoperahouse.com/events/whats-on/opera-australia/2022/madama-butterfly.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Madama Butterfly</a></em>, the same as the musical <em>Miss Saigon</em>, promises to be a story of love and heartbreak accompanied by Opera Australia’s Chorus and Orchestra.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong><em>La Traviata</em> (July 2-29)</strong></p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-f11513d8-7fff-a6ea-3f39-34bbbe66f0b7"><em>La Traviata</em>’s love story, which inspired <em>Moulin Rouge</em> and <em>Pretty Woman</em>, will star homegrown talent Stacey Alleaume, reprising her role as a free-spirited courtesan Violetta, alongside a cast of Opera Australia’s talented singers that bring the music of Giuseppe Verdi to life.</span></p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/06/syd-opera-traviata.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Agnes Sarkis as Flora Bervoix, Andrew Moran as Marquis D’Obigny and the Opera Australia Chorus in Opera Australia’s 2022 production of La Traviata at Arts Centre Melbourne. Image: Jeff Busby </em></p> <p dir="ltr">With lavish sets and costumes, recognisable aria ‘Sempre libera’ and drinking song ‘Brindisi’, <em><a href="https://www.sydneyoperahouse.com/events/whats-on/opera-australia/2022/la-traviata.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">La Traviata</a></em> is a fan-favourite and perfect performance for first-time opera goers.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong><em>Il Trovatore</em> (July 15-30)</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">Another Verdi opera, director Davide Livermore’s digital production of <em><a href="https://www.sydneyoperahouse.com/events/whats-on/opera-australia/2022/il-trovatore.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Il Trovatore</a></em> will be making its premiere at the Sydney Opera House this July.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-6a59bb62-7fff-ead4-397a-15b6a97f0206"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">It will also mark the first time Opera Australia has performed the opera in almost a decade, starring South Korean tenor Yonghoon Lee as Manrico, Belarusian baritone Maxim Aniskin as Count di Luna, and American soprano Leah Crocetto as Leonora.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/06/syd-opera-trovatore.jpg" alt="" width="1280" height="720" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Yonghoon Lee stars as Manrico in the digital production of ‘Il Trovatore’. Image: Opera Australia 2022</em></p> <p dir="ltr">The highly dramatic tale, filled with a love triangle, a quest for revenge, and sacrifices made for love, is enhanced by digital stagecraft.</p> <p dir="ltr">Livermore’s production promises to explore jealousy, obsession, witchcraft and what it means to curse and be cursed.</p> <p dir="ltr">Tickets for all three operas cost $79 for adults (plus a $9.80 booking fee) and can be purchased <a href="https://www.opera.org.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">here</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-a8f83808-7fff-31ee-d6ac-1431d5778839"></span></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Opera Australia 2022 </em></p>

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Where do all the mosquitoes go in the winter?

<p>Summer evenings by the pool, lake or BBQ mean mosquitoes. But what about during winter when we’re mostly indoors? As the weather cools, these bloodsucking pests are rarely seen.</p> <p>But where do they go?</p> <p><strong>Warm, wet conditions suit mosquitoes</strong></p> <p>Mosquitoes have complex life cycles that rely on water brought to <a href="https://theconversation.com/hidden-housemates-the-mosquitoes-that-battle-for-our-backyards-59072" target="_blank" rel="noopener">wetlands, flood plains, and water-holding containers</a> by seasonal rainfall. Depending on whether we’re experiencing a summer under the influence of <a href="https://theconversation.com/will-the-arrival-of-el-nino-mean-fewer-mosquitoes-this-summer-102496" target="_blank" rel="noopener">El Niño</a> or <a href="https://theconversation.com/la-nina-will-give-us-a-wet-summer-thats-great-weather-for-mozzies-147180" target="_blank" rel="noopener">La Niña</a>, mosquito populations will change in different ways.</p> <p>During warmer months, their life cycle lasts about a month. Eggs laid around water hatch and the immature mosquitoes go through four developmental stages. Larvae then change to pupae, from which an adult mosquito emerges, sits briefly on the water surface, and then flies off to buzz and bite and continue the cycle.</p> <p>Water is crucial but temperature is really important too. Unlike warm-blooded animals, mosquitoes can’t control their own body temperatures. The warmer it is, the more active mosquitoes will be. There’s usually more of them about too.</p> <p>But once cold weather arrives, their activity slows. They fly less, they don’t bite as often, they reproduce less, and their life cycle takes longer to complete.</p> <p>Temperature also plays a role in determining the ability of mosquitoes to <a href="https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmicb.2020.584846/full" target="_blank" rel="noopener">spread viruses</a>.</p> <p>Cold weather isn’t great for mosquitoes but <a href="https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/abs/10.1146/annurev-ento-011613-162023" target="_blank" rel="noopener">millions of years of evolution</a> have given them a <a href="https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s13071-017-2235-0" target="_blank" rel="noopener">few tricks to survive</a>.</p> <figure class="align-center "><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/468677/original/file-20220614-21-qmcj4w.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;rect=0%2C43%2C4883%2C3211&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/468677/original/file-20220614-21-qmcj4w.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=400&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/468677/original/file-20220614-21-qmcj4w.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=400&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/468677/original/file-20220614-21-qmcj4w.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=400&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/468677/original/file-20220614-21-qmcj4w.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=503&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/468677/original/file-20220614-21-qmcj4w.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=503&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/468677/original/file-20220614-21-qmcj4w.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=503&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="" /><figcaption><em><span class="caption">Ponds and puddles may be frozen but that doesn’t mean all mosquitoes have disappeared.</span> <span class="attribution"><a class="source" href="https://unsplash.com/photos/7UYnlgDyf0o" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Tom Keldenich/Unsplash</a>, <a class="license" href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">CC BY</a></span></em></figcaption></figure> <p><strong>Mosquitoes don’t disappear completely</strong></p> <p>On a sunny afternoon in winter, you may notice the occasional mosquito buzzing about in your backyard. Not as many as in summer but they’re still around.</p> <p>Some mosquitoes do disappear. For example, the activity of the pest mosquito <em>Culex annulirostris</em>, thought to play an important role in the <a href="https://theconversation.com/japanese-encephalitis-virus-has-been-detected-in-australian-pigs-can-mozzies-now-spread-it-to-humans-178017" target="_blank" rel="noopener">spread of Japanese encephalitis virus</a> in Australia, dramatically declines when temperatures start dropping <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1442-9993.1980.tb01260.x" target="_blank" rel="noopener">below 17.5℃</a>.</p> <p><a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/aen.12021" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Studies in Sydney</a> have shown some mosquitoes, such as <em>Culex annulirostris</em>, disappear. Others, such as <em>Culex quinquefasciatus</em> and <em>Culex molestus</em>, remain active throughout the winter. You just may not notice them (unless they enter your home to buzz about your ears).</p> <figure class="align-center "><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/469917/original/file-20220621-17-k6jyri.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/469917/original/file-20220621-17-k6jyri.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=400&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469917/original/file-20220621-17-k6jyri.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=400&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469917/original/file-20220621-17-k6jyri.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=400&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469917/original/file-20220621-17-k6jyri.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=503&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469917/original/file-20220621-17-k6jyri.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=503&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469917/original/file-20220621-17-k6jyri.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=503&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="" /><figcaption><em><span class="caption">Some mosquitoes, such as the common Aedes notoscriptus, may occasionally be seen buzzing about in winter.</span> <span class="attribution"><span class="source">Cameron Webb/NSW Health Pathology</span></span></em></figcaption></figure> <p><strong>Mosquitoes can disappear into diapause</strong></p> <p>We’re familiar with the idea of mammals hibernating through winter but mosquitoes, like many other insects, can enter a phase of inactivity called <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/eea.12753" target="_blank" rel="noopener">diapause</a>.</p> <p>Once cold weather arrives, adult mosquitoes find hiding places such as tree hollows and animal burrows, within the cracks and crevices of bushland environments, or in garages, basements or other structures around our homes, suburbs and cities. These mosquitoes may only live a few weeks during summer but going into diapause allows them to survive many months through winter.</p> <p>Mosquitoes can also be found in frozen bodies of water, whether it is a bucket of water in your backyard or a near freezing wetland. For example, there is a group of mosquitoes that belong to the genus <em>Coquillettidia</em> whose <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/jvec.12338" target="_blank" rel="noopener">larvae attach</a> to the submerged parts of aquatic plants and can survive the cold winter temperatures. Their development dramatically slows and they’ll stay in the water until spring arrives.</p> <figure class="align-center zoomable"><a href="https://images.theconversation.com/files/469888/original/file-20220621-11-eny4r6.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=1000&amp;fit=clip"><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/469888/original/file-20220621-11-eny4r6.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/469888/original/file-20220621-11-eny4r6.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=400&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469888/original/file-20220621-11-eny4r6.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=400&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469888/original/file-20220621-11-eny4r6.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=400&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469888/original/file-20220621-11-eny4r6.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=503&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469888/original/file-20220621-11-eny4r6.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=503&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/469888/original/file-20220621-11-eny4r6.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=503&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="" /></a><figcaption><em><span class="caption">By going into ‘diapause’ adults can survive in places like tree hollows for the cold months.</span> <span class="attribution"><a class="source" href="https://images.unsplash.com/photo-1625635756778-218152037ccc?ixlib=rb-1.2.1&amp;ixid=MnwxMjA3fDB8MHxwaG90by1wYWdlfHx8fGVufDB8fHx8&amp;auto=format&amp;fit=crop&amp;w=1770&amp;q=80" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Unsplash/Pat Whelan</a>, <a class="license" href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">CC BY</a></span></em></figcaption></figure> <p><strong>All their eggs in one winter basket</strong></p> <p>Some mosquitoes make it through the winter thanks to their eggs. Mosquito eggs can be incredibly resilient. They survive being dried out in hot and salty coastal wetlands during summer but also frozen in snow-covered creeks in winter.</p> <p>In coastal regions of Australia, eggs of the saltmarsh mosquito (<em>Aedes vigilax</em>), sit perfectly safely on soil. Once the weather warms and tides bring in water to the wetlands, these eggs will be ready to hatch.</p> <p>There is also a special mosquito in Australia known as the “snow melt mosquito” (<em>Aedes nivalis</em>) whose <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1440-6055.1996.tb01371.x" target="_blank" rel="noopener">eggs survive under snow</a> and hatch once that snow melts and fills ponds, creeks and wetlands throughout alpine regions.</p> <p><strong>Does it matter where mosquitoes go in the winter?</strong></p> <p>It also isn’t just the mosquitoes that survive the cold months. Viruses, such as <a href="https://theconversation.com/japanese-encephalitis-virus-can-cause-deadly-brain-swelling-but-in-less-than-1-of-cases-178985" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Japanese encephalitis virus</a> or <a href="https://theconversation.com/explainer-what-is-ross-river-virus-24630" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Ross River virus</a>, can survive from <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2631767/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">summer to summer</a> in mosquito eggs, immature stages, or diapausing adults.</p> <p>Knowing the seasonal spread of mosquitoes helps health authorities design surveillance and control programs. It may help understand how <a href="https://entomologytoday.org/2022/05/24/snow-covered-tires-help-invasive-mosquitoes-survive-cold-winters/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">invasive mosquitoes survive</a> conditions in Australia outside their native ranges by <a href="https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0211167" target="_blank" rel="noopener">hiding out from the cold</a>, such as in rainwater tanks.</p> <p>Even mosquitoes typically found in tropical locations can even <a href="https://besjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/1365-2664.13480" target="_blank" rel="noopener">adapt to cooler climates</a>.</p> <p>This knowledge may even expose the chilly chink in mosquito’s armour that we can use to better control mosquito populations and reduce the risks of disease outbreaks.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/185021/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/cameron-webb-6736" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Cameron Webb</a>, Clinical Associate Professor and Principal Hospital Scientist, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841" target="_blank" rel="noopener">University of Sydney</a></em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com" target="_blank" rel="noopener">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/where-do-all-the-mosquitoes-go-in-the-winter-185021" target="_blank" rel="noopener">original article</a>.</em></p> <p><em>Image: Getty Images</em></p>

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Review: Feel like a tourist in your own city at Sydney’s Opera House Tours

<p dir="ltr">Sydney’s harbour wouldn’t be complete without it, but the history and interiors of the Sydney Opera House aren’t as well known - which is where the Sydney Opera House Tours and Sunset at the House tours come in.</p> <p><span id="docs-internal-guid-2391c220-7fff-4973-854f-9da71e52c361"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Throughout June, Sunset at the House gives you a chance to explore and witness the stunning harbour views during the golden hour.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/06/20220616_163853-scaled.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Author</em></p> <p dir="ltr">The tour is limited to a maximum of 30 people, making for an intimate experience as you make your way from the steps outside all the way to the Joan Sutherland Theatre near the building’s peak, then back down again to the Western Foyers and Colonnade, taking in the history of the Opera House along the way.</p> <p dir="ltr">But before you step inside, the tour’s first stop is on the steps outside, where you can view the iconic sails and the Aztec-inspired stairs designed to represent stepping away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and into something more spiritual (at least, that’s what our tour guide said).</p> <p dir="ltr">Once inside, you’ll be treated to an immersive digital experience projected onto the ceiling above you, showcasing some of the highlights of the Concert Hall’s past performances. </p> <p dir="ltr">The tour couldn’t be any more timely either, with the Concert Hall preparing to open its doors in July after being closed for two years of renewal works.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-a8cc4f9c-7fff-f708-5a4f-79afe17dd487"></span></p> <p dir="ltr">If art, architecture, history, or even acoustics technology intrigues you, you’ll be sure to find the tour to be a fascinating insight into the Opera House’s story and the work that goes into putting on its calendar of shows and performances, made all the more compelling by the engaging tour guides.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/2022/06/20220616_171614-scaled.jpg" alt="" width="2560" height="1920" /></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Author</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Rounding out the tour with some nibbles and a glass of bubbles next to Portside Sydney, one of the Opera House’s harbourside eateries, is a nice touch that gives you the chance to enjoy views of the Harbour Bridge and its surrounds as day turns to night.</p> <p dir="ltr">Though tickets for Sunset at the House have already sold out, the Opera House will be running daily tours - without the canapes and sunset drinks - at 11.30am, 12pm, 1.30pm, 2pm, 3pm and 3.30pm until August 31.</p> <p dir="ltr">From September, tours will depart at 10.30am, 12pm and 2pm Sunday to Friday, with three tours on Saturdays at 9am, 10.30am and 12.30pm.</p> <p dir="ltr">The hour-long tours are free for children under five, with adult tickets costing $43 and $33 for conession holders. </p> <p dir="ltr">To book your tickets, head to the Opera House <a href="https://www.sydneyoperahouse.com/visit-us/tours-and-experiences/english-tour.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">website</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-1db6cfb8-7fff-cfa2-6ddc-99b81a5263ef"></span></p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image: Sydney Opera House</em></p>

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