Queensland Flag History
The State flag dates from the time when Queensland was a self-governing British colony with its own navy. The flag which has been in use since 1876 is the Blue Ensign with the State badge imposed on it. The badge is a Royal Crown in the middle of a light blue Maltese Cross.
Coat of Arms
Queensland’s coat of arms, the oldest in Australia, was granted to the colony of Queensland by Queen Victoria in 1893. Primary industries are represented on the shield by the sheaf of wheat and the heads of the bull and the ram. The importance of mining is shown by the column of gold rising from a heap of quartz. The brolga represents native-born Queenslanders and the red deer represents the Old World. The state badge on top shows allegiance to the Queen and the two stalks of sugar cane indicate the importance of that crop.
The State motto Audax at Fidelis means ‘Bold, aye, and faithful too!’
ANIMAL EMBLEM OF QUEENSLAND
The animal emblem of Queensland is the endearing koala. The koala (Phascolarctus cinereus) is a marsupial – an animal that carries its young in a pouch. The tiny young, less than 2 cm long when born, crawl through their mother’s fur to her pouch where they are protected and suck milk for about six months. Then they cling to their mother’s back until they are almost as big as she is. These gentle vegetarians rarely drink water, receiving sufficient moisture from their diet of eucalypt leaves.
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BIRD EMBLEM OF QUEENSLAND
The State’s bird emblem, the brolga (Grus rubicundus), is the only species of crane native to Australia. Standing more than a metre tall on long thin legs, their outstretched wings can measure two metres across. Brolgas are famous for their very fancy dancing displays at mating time. A pair of birds will bow to each other with dignity, then bob and pirouette, prance back and forth and jump into the air together.
They are a light grey colour with a patch of red skin behind their eyes. They lay two to three whitish eggs and live on a diet of insects, frogs, reptiles and green plants.
FLORAL EMBLEM OF QUEENSLAND
Queenslanders helped to choose the Cooktown orchid (Dendrobium bigibbum) as their State floral emblem in 1959 for the State’s Centenary. This beautiful native orchid grows on trees and rocks in the tropical rainforests of Queensland’s north. They are usually mauve or purple in colour but rare white ones have been found. They bloom in autumn or winter with up to twenty flowers on each arching stem.
Information Sourced from:
Flags and Emblems of Australia – Jill B Bruce
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