Welcome to land down under. Three times the size of Greenland, Australia has been called the world's largest island. You can also think of it as the world's smallest continent. Australia includes the island of Tasmania to its south and many smaller islands. A few hundred miles to the north is the island of New Guinea. In Australia, you will find:

• Vast deserts such as the Great Victoria Desert

• The world's largest continuous coral reef — the Great Barrier Reef.

• Tropical rainforests

• More than 21,000 miles of coastline

• Grasslands such as the Ord Victoria Plain

Do you like weird animals? If so, you'll love Australia. Where else can you find so many animals that are unique to this continent, including egg-laying mammals — the duck-billed platypus and the echidna, which are called monotremes.

Then there are all the animals such as the kangaroo and the koala that carry their babies around in pouches. These mammals with pouches are called marsupials.

Fun Facts

The agouti, a rodent from tropical South America buries Brazil nuts for later use in case it gets hungry. Because it loses some of the buried nuts, many of the nuts sprout into trees. That's good for the forest and the agouti can always find more nuts.
Fun Fact - agouti

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