Invasive Species in Australia


Australia has some of the strictest border controls in the world when it comes to what items you can bring into the country, especially related to animals and plants. That’s because the country has a very fragile ecosystem that has been adversely affected by the introduction of a number of species in the past.


Australia’s wildlife is unique because it has developed in isolation from other parts of the world for so long. When the British colonized Australia, they tried to introduce several animal species, many of which caused great harm to the local environment. Some of them had no natural predators, so they reproduced out of control, or they ate local plants to the point of extinction. Examples include sheep, camels, foxes, rabbits, and cane toads.


Introduced plant species have also wreaked havoc on Australia’s ecosystem. The British wanted to grow trees and flowers that they were familiar to them from home, but some of them spread wildly, invading natural landscapes and agricultural land. Today there are 32 recognized weeds in Australia, and the government spends $4 billion per year trying to control them.


So now you can understand why passengers landing in Australia have to answer so many questions about what they are carrying. Even a little mud containing plant seeds stuck to your tent, for example, could result in a disaster for the country.

Vocabulary 好字精選

1. efragile (adj) easily broken or damaged 易碎的
Don’t shake this box. The contents are fragile. 

2. ecosystem (n) a specific environment and all the living things in it 生態系統
This swamp is an entire ecosystem of its own. 

3. adversely (adv) in a negative way 不利的
Many workers were adversely impacted by the merger of the two companies. 

4. isolation (n) far away from anything else 孤立,隔離
The old man lived a life of isolation up in the mountains by himself.

5. colonize (v) when one country occupies another for an extended period 殖民
India was colonized by England.

6. predator (n) an animal that eats another 捕食者,獵食者
This snake is a fierce predator.

7. weed (n) a plant that spreads easily and is usually unwanted 雜草
Mrs. Lambert was picking all the weeds out of her garden.
Lambert 太太從花園裡挑出了所有的雜草。

Phrases and Sentence Patterns 句型解析

1. out of control (phr) uncontrollably 失控,無法控制
The students were out of control, running around the museum noisily.

2. wreak havoc (expression) wreak = cause, havoc = a lot of destruction 造成破壞
The virus is wreaking havoc on the local population.

Exercise 課後練習題

1. Betty put a _______________ sticker on her luggage because it contained a glass vase.

2. Most desert _______________ are home to a surprising amount of wildlife.

3. Drinking or doing drugs can _______________ affect one’s ability to drive.

4. Those patients must be kept in _______________ because their disease can easily spread.

5. Nepal is a country that has never been _______________ by a European power.

6. Rabbits live underground because they have many _______________ above ground.

7.Dandelions are pretty little yellow flowers but they can take over gardens like a _______________.

8. The virus is spreading ______________ and thousands of people are dying.

9. The typhoon is expected to _______________ on the coast.

1. fragile
2. ecosystems
3. adversely
4. isolation
5. colonized
6. predators
7. weed
8. out of control
9. wreak havoc

Comprehension Questions 閱讀理解

1. According to the article, what did the British do incorrectly when they colonized Australia? 
a. They brought in many species that didn’t belong. 
b. They killed off many local species.
c. They didn’t know how to raise local animals and crops properly.
d. They didn’t have strict enough controls for arriving tourists.

2. Why is Australia’s ecosystem so fragile?
a. Because kangaroos and koalas live there.
b. Because it was colonized by the British.
c. Because it is a land mass far away from any other.
d. Because of the unique climate of the country.


1. 根據文章內容,英國在殖民澳洲時做錯了什麼?
a. 他們帶來了許多不屬於那裡的物種。
b. 他們殺死了許多當地的物種。
c. 他們不知道如何正確地養殖當地的動物和農作物。
d. 他們對到達的遊客沒有嚴格的管制。

2. 為什麼澳洲的生態系統如此脆弱?
a. 因為袋鼠和無尾熊住在那裡。
b. 因為它是英國殖民地。
c. 因為它是遠離其他地方的土地。
d. 由於該國獨特的氣候。


© Huachu Digital Technology Limited Company. All Rights Reserved.
Please do not change any contents and information when you forward this newsletter, and keep all messages of COPYRIGHT. Or you will infringe the rights of Huachu Digital Technology Limited Company.