In this article, I share 10 weird facts about Australia that are absolutely true, believe it or not.
Australians invented cockroach racing
Cockroach racing is a club gambling activity which started in 1982 at the Story Bridge Hotel in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. The event is held on 26 January, Australia Day, and is given the title “Australia Day Cockroach Races”.
Cockroaches are brought to the races by the participants but the roach could also be bought at the venue of the races. The preferred option is, however, to bring your own cockroaches.
You need permission to create rain
Under the Rain Making Control Act, you must seek ministers approval in Victoria before creating fake clouds of rain. We take it that this may also cover rain dancing or other forms of witchcraft in relation to creating unnatural rain.
It has been against the law to make artificial rain since 1967.
It would take 33 years to swim at a new beach every day
Australia has a lengthy coastline. 60,000 kilometres long in fact. There are approximately 12,000 beaches along that coast, which means at one beach per day you’d take nearly 33 years to visit them all. You’d also need a fair bit of sunscreen too!
Australia boasts the longest highway
With a length of 14,500 kilometres, the national Highway 1 in Australia is the longest national highway anywhere in the world. It does a complete loop all the way around the nation, except for Tasmania, which is separated by water of course.
Australia also has the longest fence
The world’s longest fence is 5,613 kilometres in length. The six foot high fence was originally constructed in the 1880’s to stop Rabbits, however it was upgraded in the early 1900’s to help stop Dingoes.
As well as the fence’s impressive length, it also boasts a 4.5 metre clearance on each side, to prevent the fence being damaged by plants, etc.
There are 2.5 sheep for every person in Australia
The sheep population in Australia is 63.7 million, and the human population is 25.69 million, so there’s roughly 2.5 sheep for every person living here. That’s a lot of baaa-aaa-aaad jokes right there.
Australia invented cask wine
Heard of cask wine, also known as the goon bag? Well, here’s another entry to these weird facts about Australia… way back in 1964, a winemaker in South Australia invented this handy form of wine packaging.
Thomas Angove, a winemaker from Renmark, South Australia used polyethylene bladders of one gallon (4.5 litres), which were then placed inside corrugated cardboard boxes for retail sale.
You cannot interfere with a homing pigeon
In South Australia, there is a law that states you may be fined $250 for killing, injuring or taking any homing pigeon; or entering any land with the plan to. We say just leave those homing pigeons alone – they have things to do, and homes to find.
Australia’s most famous mammal can’t walk backwards
That’s right! Another one of my favourite weird facts about Australia, the poor Kangaroo can only ever go forward. Kangaroos hop off their feet and use their tail to balance themselves. This helps them move forward very effectively, however the same muscular system prevents them from going in reverse.
So stop yelling ‘back up!’ at them. That just offends them, knowing they can’t walk or hop backwards.
An Australian invented the black box flight recorder
Australian scientist Dr David Warren, invented the black box flight recorder, which has contributed to making commercial air travel the safest form of travel.
The story of the invention has a sad component too; Dr Warren was motivated to do so after losing his own father to an aircraft tragedy in 1934 when the Miss Hobart crashed into the Bass Strait.
There you have it. Ten weird facts about Australia that are absolutely true. What one was your favourite? Stay tuned as there are more lists like this to come!