Wide, from Cape Agulhas to Enderby Land, 2200 m., and from Tasmania to Wilkes Land, 1550 m., while the meridianal extension of the Indian Ocean is 6200 m., of the Pacific, 9300 m., and of the Atlantic, 12,500 m., measuring across the North Pole to Bering Strait.
The edge of the abysmal area comes close to the eastern coasts of Tasmania and New South Wales, approaching to within 60 m.
Yet while the Tasmanians are so distinctly separated in physique and customs from the Australians, the fauna and flora of Tasmania and Australia prove that at one time the two formed one continent, and it would take an enormous time for the formation of Bass Strait.
Gerard Krefft, Notes on the Fauna of Tasmania (Sydney, 1868); George Thomas Lloyd, Thirty-three Years in Tasmania and Victoria (London, 1862); Mrs Louisa Anne Meredith, My Home in Tasmania; or, Nine Years in Australia (New York, 1853); Tasmanian Friends and Foes - Feathered, Furred, and Finned (Hobart, 1881); Royal Society of Tasmania, Papers and Proceedings (Hobart); H.
In a more restricted sense the term Australasia corresponds to the large division including Australia, Tasmania and New Zealand.
The wombat of Tasmania and the islands of Bass's Straits (P. ursinus), and the closely similar but larger P. platyrhinus of the southern portion of the mainland of Australia, belong to this group. On the other hand, in the hairy-nosed wombat (P. latifrons) of Southern Australia, the fur is smooth and silky; the ears are large and more pointed; the muzzle is hairy; the frontal region of the skull is broader than in the other section, with well-marked postorbital processes; and there are thirteen ribs.
The distribution of population at the close of 1906 (4,118,000) was New South Wales 1,530,000, Victoria 1,223,000, Queensland 534,000, South Australia 381,000, Western Australia 270,000, Tasmania 180,000.
The constitution was accepted by Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania by popular acclamation, but in New South Wales very great opposition was shown, the main points of objection being the financial provisions, equal representation in the Senate, and the difficulty in the way of the larger states securing an amendment of the constitution in the event of a conflict with the smaller states.
Under this act, which was dated the 9th of July 1900, a proclamation was issued on the 17th of September of the same year, declaring that, on and after the 1st of January 1901, the people of New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Queensland, Tasmania and Western Australia should be united in a federal commonwealth under the name of the Commonwealth of Australia.
The precise date of the separation is fixed as later than the Miocene, since the fringe of the marine Miocene deposits along the southern coast of Victoria is broken, from Flinders to Alberton; and this gap was no doubt due to the subsidence of the land; of which the islands in the Bass Strait are remnants, which then connected Tasmania with the continent.