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Queensland in Australia

Queensland is a state in eastern Australia. It is the second largest state by area and the third largest state by population. In 2006 there were 3,904,532 people living in Queensland.[1]

It occupies the north-east corner of Australia. The state has the Northern Territory to the west, South Australia to the south-west and New South Wales to the south. To the east, Queensland is bordered by the Coral Sea and Pacific Ocean. The capital city is Brisbane.

The area was first settled by Indigenous Australians and Torres Strait Islanders, who arrived between 40,000 and 65,000 years ago. Later, Queensland was made a British Crown Colony that was separated from New South Wales in 1859. The area that currently forms Brisbane was originally the Moreton Bay punishment colony, intended as a place for criminals with a repeated offence history who had offended while serving out their sentences in New South Wales. The state later encouraged free settlement, and today Queensland's economy is dominated by the agricultural, tourist and natural resource sectors.

The population is concentrated in the south-east corner, which includes the capital Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan City, and the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast. Other major regional centres include Cairns, Townsville, Mackay, Rockhampton, Bundaberg, Toowoomba, and Mount Isa. Queensland is often nicknamed the Sunshine State, since it enjoys warm weather and a sizable portion of the state is in the tropics.

Emblems of Queensland

  • The floral emblem of Queensland is the Cooktown Orchid, Dendrobium phalaenopsis, which was chosen in 1959 for the centenary of the beginning of the state of Queensland.[2]
  • The fauna emblem of Queensland is the Koala, Phascolarctos cinereus.[3] It was chosen in 1971.
  • The bird emblem of Queensland is the Brolga, Grus rubicunda.[4] It is the only one of the 17 species of crane that come from Queensland. It has been on the Queensland Coat of Arms since 1977, and became the bird emblem in 1986.
  • The aquatic emblem is the Anemone Fish, Amphiprion akindynos.[5] It was chosen in 2005.
  • The state's official gem is the sapphire, which was first found in Queensland in 1870.[6]


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