Western Australia takes up almost one-third of the whole area of Australia, but has less than one-twelfth of the population. This is because most of this state is desert – the Great Sandy Desert, the Gibson Desert, and about half of the Great Victoria Desert. There is also a large plateau lying about 1000 to 1500 feet above sea level. The highest point in Western Australia is Mt. Bruce, which rises to a height of over 4000 feet.
The main rivers in the state are in the southwest, flowing south from the Darling and Stirling ranges. There are also a few rivers along the west coast, such as the Gascoyne, Fitzroy and Ord, which only flow during the summer months.
The climate of the northern part of Western Australia is hot all year round and rain during the summer. In the south, though, the summers are hot and dry, while the winters are mild and moist. In the middle part of the state there is very little rain and really high temperatures. In the southwest there are forests of eucalyptus, which is valuable, especially the varieties of jarrah and karri.
Soldiers and convicts from eastern Australia established the first settlement in this state in 1826. The British established settlements at Perth and Fremantle in 1829, but it was the discovery of gold in the latter part of the 19 th century that drew people to this part of the country.
Today, most of the population of Western Australia is found in and around the capital – Perth. There are small farming and mining stations in the outlying areas. The most important industries in this state are farming, grazing, fishing, forestry and mining, but the most important farming product is wheat. There are more wheat growing lands in this state than in any other part of the country.
Currently Indexing Over 75 'BluePages' Covering 1,000+ topics!