In winter, Mt Hotham in the Victoria High Country, is cloaked in snow. In summer, wildflowers cover the slopes. But 35–49 million years ago, the area experienced no snow fall. In fact, it was so warm that rainforests grew over the mountains.
Fossils excavated from around Mt Hotham include species similar to those found today in the rainforests of North Queensland and New Guinea. Among them are Cryptocarya, Gymnostoma, several tropical Proteaceae and the conifer Agathis.
Carpenter, R.J., Hill, R.S., Greenwood, D.R., Partridge, A.D. and Banks, M.A. (2004). No snow in the mountains: Early Eocene plant fossils from Hotham Heights, Victoria, Australia. Australian Journal of Botany 52(6): 685–718
Hill, R.S. (2004). Origins of the southeastern Australian vegetation. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London series B 359: 1537–1549.