David Rabbitborough's A to Z of Australian Species

 

THE TOURIST

Australia boasts many species that are migratory. One of these is the Tourist, a creature that every year makes a great journey to locations in the northern hemisphere.

In fact Australian Tourists constitute something of a pest in many foreign cities, eating more than their fair share of food resources and mating freely with local species. Australia is, at the same time host, to many incoming species of Tourist.

On almost any day in Sydney you can see pairs of brightly coloured North American Yokels, a mid-western species that has developed large bulbous stomachs to cushion the bouncing of the heavy cameras around their necks. Or you could see a herd of Japanese Clickers, a gregarious species that automatically follows anyone in a peaked cap.

Like many introduced species, Tourists are a threat to the environment with their excessive feeding - a herd of Japanese tourists have been known to strip a souvenir stand down to the plywood in less than 38 seconds. In Northern Australia, there are schemes operating to farm tourists as a commercial crop. The free roaming tourists are basically herded onto buses and transported to restaurants where they are fattened up prior to being driven into the local shopping malls and casinos for fleecing.

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