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cannibalz3
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Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 12:33 pm

Does any one here have first-hand experiences in little tiny islands? I mean REALLY tiny, stuff that's really hard to find on the map. Bouvet, the Norwegian island in the Atlantic, Crozet, Iles Gambier, Jaris Island, Kerguellen Islands, etc etc etc.

Are there people on all of them? What do they do there? What interests do their host countries (US, France, Australia, etc) see in keeping these little lands?
 
MD11Engineer
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 12:43 pm

Go to the Philippines. you´ll should find about 7000 islands, starting from the three big one (Luzon, Palawan, Mindenao) down to specks barely looking out of the water.

Jan
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QANTASforever
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 12:45 pm

I can answer for Heard and McDonald Island (Yyz717 currently lives there though).

Permanently glaciated, Heard Island is dominated by the active volcano, Big Ben, Australia's highest mountain outside of the continent.
Heard Island, together with the nearby McDonald Islands, was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1997. A Heard Island and McDonald Islands Marine Reserve was declared in October 2002. The islands are administered by the Australian Antarctic Division in Canberra.

Wildlife and other scientific research is the primary purpose for the Heard Is base. I believe there are about 20-50 scientists on the island which can only be reached by sea.

QFF
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jasepl
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 12:53 pm

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 2):
I can answer for Heard and McDonald Island (Yyz717 currently lives there though).

ROFL! But the man of leisure from the Heards is never willing to tell us what things are like there, so we're going to have to go with your experience.
 
Alessandro
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 12:59 pm

Fishing, oil and LNG rights are a few reasons to keep them.
www.cia.gov got a good listing of islands that are located around the world
and belong to nations far away...
From New Yorqatar to Califarbia...
 
ltbewr
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 3:16 pm

One interesting group is the St. Pierre & Miquelon Islands, which are a 'Department' of France, off the coast of Eastern Canada near the enternce of the St. Lawrence. Totaling about 242 Sq. Kms, and with a population of about 7000, it is the last remains of the French empire in North America. Most of it's business relates to the fishing industry. It's heyday was during the 1920's, during the Canadian and USA alcohol prohibitions. Since it was a part of France, it became a major transfer port for the sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages from Europe to North America. When Prohibition ended in Canada and the USA, the economy collasped back to being a backward fishing port.
Another one is Pictern Island, in the middle of the South Pacific, and a UK territory. It is best known as the home of the 'Mutany on the Bounty' sailors and their decendants. Last year, it got some attention due to old claims of rape and sexual assult of some of the female residents. I believe that only a few hundred people live on it.
 
QANTASforever
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 3:25 pm

Two I have personally visited are the Republic of Nauru and Tuvalu. Both are extremely small pacific island nations.

They were absolutely fascinating - Tuvalu in particular.

I reccomend them thoroughly.

QFF
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skidmarks
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 3:38 pm

Isle of Man, a small, perfectly formed island in the Irish Sea, between England, Scotland and Ireland. Around 32 miles long and 13 wide at it's maximum, most famous for the TT (Tourist Trophy) motrobike road races. Also, some of the roads have no speed limits, so you speed freaks can go as fast as you can - until you reach the hidden bend!!

Marvelous place to visit - if you ignore the old codgers driving around in their Mercs and BMW's! And I live there, another excellent reason to visit. There are castles, hills, glens and other beutiful scenery, We have the worlds oldest continous parliament, a Victorian railway, narrow gauge with rolling stock to match, we have an electric railway dating from the late 19th/early 20th century and horse drawn trams on Douglas Prom in the summer.

Not exactly tropical but hey, you can't have everything.

Right, thats at least a fiver the tourist board owe me!!!

Cheers

Andy  old 
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Banco
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 5:57 pm

QFF, you might know the answer to this:

A lot of the Pacific islands that are administered by Australia were obviously formerly British possessions. How did the transfer to Australia take place? Obviously, the logic in Australia being the "parent" power is clear, for those that do not wish independence, but was it an agreement between the UK and Australia for Australia to take them on, given their geographic location? And when/how did that happen?
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JGPH1A
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 5:58 pm

I've been to Wallis, in French Polynesia - part of the TOM (Territoire d'Outre Mer) of Wallis et Futuna, a tiny island with about 1500 people on it. I was on a cruise (M.S. Caledonian Star) and we stopped at Wallis (the first cruise ship ever to stop there) - the ship had to enter the lagoon through a tiny gap that can only be accessed at high tide. The day we were there there was a local festival going on, with the king and all his attendants seated in style, with singing and dancing and lots of roast pigs on woven palm baskets - it was wonderful. On the same trip I went to Bora Bora, Moorea, Tahiti, Tonga, Vavau, Samoa, and both the main islands of Fiji - it was cooooll !

I went to Spitsbergen last summer, up in the Arctic, which was breathtaking - so remote and isolated, seemingly desolate but actually teeming with life.

The tiniest island I've stayed on was Tobacco Caye, in Belize - it is about 80 metres long, and takes about 15 minutes to walk right round.

I've also been to a few of the coral islands on the Barrier Reef in Australia - Orpheus, Heron, Lady Eliot - all very lovely and well worth a visit.
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ANCFlyer
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 6:23 pm

I've been to Guam half a dozen times . . . nice place to visit . . . probably wouldn't want to live there permanently. About 35 miles long and 9 miles wide, at the widest point, 4 miles at the narrowest. Beautiful place. Great people, great food.

Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 5):
Another one is Pictern Island, in the middle of the South Pacific, and a UK territory. It is best known as the home of the 'Mutany on the Bounty' sailors and their decendants. Last year, it got some attention due to old claims of rape and sexual assult of some of the female residents. I believe that only a few hundred people live on it.

I'd love to visit Pitcairn . . . but you can only get there by boat, and only a few times a year. It's population is only about 50 actually.

Look Here: www.government.pn
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gkirk
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 6:24 pm

Been to Tenerife and Majorca if that counts?  Wink
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levent
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 6:25 pm

Although not colonies but just islands a few kilometres from the mainland, I very much like Koh Pai and Koh Samet in South-East Thailand. Both small, protected nature reserves where the Thai government and the Navy make sure that they remain unspoilt.
 
Banco
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 6:26 pm

Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 10):
I'd love to visit Pitcairn . . . but you can only get there by boat, and only a few times a year. It's population is only about 50 actually.

And half of them are likely to be in prison too...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/4235185.stm
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gkirk
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 6:28 pm

Quoting Levent (Reply 12):
Both small, protected nature reserves where the Thai government and the Navy make sure that they remain unspoilt

I doubt they were left unspoilt after the Tsunami  Sad
When you hear the noise of the Tartan Army Boys, we'll be coming down the road!
 
Banco
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 6:31 pm

Quoting Gkirk (Reply 14):
I doubt they were left unspoilt after the Tsunami

They're on the other side of Thailand, Kirkie.
She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 6:36 pm

Quoting Banco (Reply 13):
And half of them are likely to be in prison too...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asi...5.stm

Yup. There is supposedly a jail right on the island . . .

The whole story is rather bizarre.
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Aloha717200
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 7:03 pm

I used to be fascinated with the islands of the south pacific (and barely north pacific like the Marshall Islands and others).


One really interesting group of islands is one that you might not have known about...or maybe you have. The Leeward Hawaiian Islands. I'm not talking about the major islands of hawaii that you see in brochures, nor Niihau, I'm talking about the little spits of land the stretch on for over 1,000 miles northwest of Kauai...the remains of once-large islands, now eroded away and subsided back into the sea.


The first of these is actually Kaula, just south of Niihau, little more than a crater poking above the water.

Next is Nihoa, a very small but rocky island with ancient lava still exposed, to the northeast of Kauai.

Next is Necker Island, older and lower-lying than Nihoa, and also rocky and uninhabitable.

Beyond that is a large atoll called the French Frigate Shoals, but it too contains just a little bit of exposed basalt...in the form of the La Perouse Pinnacle, in the middle and western side of the atoll. There is a landing strip here that was constructed in WWII, made of coral, and there is a scientific station with about 20 oceanographers who study the reef sharks and other aquatic life in the area. They are temporary residents.


Northeast of that lie the very last islands with exposed basalt/lava, those are the Gardner Pinnacles. Little more than the size of a couple tennis courts wide. They are all that remains of what was once an island of hawaii much like the inhabited ones today. The most ancient rock in the hawaiian chain is exposed here.


Beyond that, there is Maro Reef. Once an island, it has sunk far beneath the waves. Coral reef has built on the underwater plateau of the ancient volcano, and little spits of coral sand surface during low tide here, but the sand constantly shifts and there is no real, permanent part of the reef that stays above the waves.


Next, Laysan Island. Also a coral island, no exposed rock. It's an O-shaped island with a small lagoon in the middle. Laysan is uninhabited but the sands that form the island do stay above the tide. Terns make their home here. Laysan's reef is rather small.

Lisianski Island is much the same. Uninhabited, an island formed of coral sand, with a large reef and lagoon.


Next, Pearl and Hermes atoll. No large area of land here, just several small spits that mostly stay above the tide but do shift over the years. Uninhabited, uninhabitable.

Midway Atoll:

Most famous of the Leeward Islands. Used to be a military installation, though most of that has been removed. It has an airport and until a few years ago was serviced by Aloha Airlines charters from Honolulu. The islands, like the rest of the Leeward chain, is a national wildlife refuge. The birds are protected here and many beaches humans are not allowed to go on because of these restrictions. People still live on Midway, but not as many as in the past.

The tour operator that used to bring people from Honolulu to Midway via Aloha went out of business. Unless another one gets approval to start up, no commercial flights will resume to Midway. Private aircraft and military aircraft routinely stop there, fuel is sometimes an issue. Midway is also an alternate landing site for transpacific aircraft. Recently, the government was threatening to pull funding for the island's airport, which would have meant that no airliners could use midway as an emergency landing site. However the government continued funding, so the airport is still operational. Last I heard, at least.

Midway Airport has one useable runway. The other runway has been pretty much abandoned and instead is used as a taxiway.


There are two major islands on Midway...Sand Island and Eastern Island. Sand Island is where the population of Midway lives, although small...and Eastern Island is the site where the old WWII airbase used to be. The runways are still there. Though mostly abandoned.


Finally, comes Kure Atoll. Kure is the last of the major leeward islands, and it does have one major island, Green Island, which does have a small runway for the Coast Guard station there. It's part of the wildlife refuge as well.

Beyond Kure Atoll, the Emperor Seamounts, underwater remains of former atolls, continue on for further thousands of miles. They have sunk too far into the ocean for coral to grow.


All of the atolls and islands of the Leeward Hawaiian Islands are still subsiding into the sea. A combination of weather and waves are eroding what's left on the surface, but below the surface, the old volcanoes are sinking under their own massive weight.

Were we to drain away the waters of the Pacific, these small spits of land and coral reef would actually be impressive mountains, and the Emperor Seamounts would continue the chain all the way up to near the Aleutians. Over time these massive mountains crack and break and underwater lava tubes and fragile shelfs give way, sinking the island even lower, while the ocean itself erodes them further still.

All the hawaiian islands will eventually end up like that. Underwater mountains, barely a shadow of what they once were.



Leeward Hawaii was one of the most fascinating parts of the pacific islands that I ever got into. Check out some info on them, it's pretty interesting, plus if you're a history buff their role in WWII is a story in itself.



Further, for other pacific islands, I strongly recommend this book. It's fantastic and full of info, if you want to learn about tons of different, tiny island nations and territories throughout the pacific. It's called:

Blue Horizons: Paradise Isles of the Pacific, P 1985.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...3-5915532-4289424?v=glance&s=books


Read up on the internet about these pacific nations and islands:


Polynesia:

Hawaii
Samoa
American Samoa
Cook Islands
Rapa Nui (aka Easter Island)
Pitcairn Island (that's the one mentioned above regarding the Bounty)
French Polynesia
Wallis and Futuna
Tonga
Niue
Tuvalu
Tokelau



Melanesia:

Fiji
Solomon Islands (fascinating for any WWII buff)
Papua New Guinea
Vanuatu
New Caledonia



Micronesia:

Federated States of Micronesia
Marshall Islands
Palau
Northern Mariana Islands
Nauru
Kiribati
Guam



And while you're at it, check out the Coral Sea Islands Territory of Australia, and the US-owned islands of Palmyra, Jarvis, Howland, Baker, Wake, and others.

[Edited 2005-03-16 11:22:27]
 
BA380
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 8:15 pm

I have been to a little island just off the coast of Europe, called "Great Britain". It's a quaint little place, and is a dependent territory of the USA.
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Aloha717200
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 8:24 pm

Just to add to that post, here's some images of the Leeward Islands:


Kaula:




Nihoa:




Necker Island:




French Frigate Shoals:

-Airstrip:

-La Perouse Pinnacle:

-Map:


Gardner Pinnacles:








Maro Reef:




Laysan Island:






Lisianski Island:




Pearl and Hermes Atoll:




Midway Islands:






Kure Atoll:







The Hawaiian Islands:

 
QANTASforever
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 8:30 pm

Quoting Banco (Reply 8):
A lot of the Pacific islands that are administered by Australia were obviously formerly British possessions. How did the transfer to Australia take place? Obviously, the logic in Australia being the "parent" power is clear, for those that do not wish independence, but was it an agreement between the UK and Australia for Australia to take them on, given their geographic location? And when/how did that happen?

Well it is complicated and does vary from country to country. To use Nauru as an example it was originally an independent Kingdom - then the Germans came, then the British and Australians came, then the Japanese came. After the war the United Nations placed Australia, New Zealand and the UK in trust of the island until it gained independence in the 1960s.

Most decisions were made by the UN with regards to who gets whatever island - those decisions still have a legacy today: both Nauru and Tuvalu use the Australian dollar, the Marshall Islands, Northern Marianas, Palau, Micronesia and Guam have an extremely close relationship with the US and use US currency.

In some cases it was arbitrary, in others it was a case of "we liberated you so now we own you". In a more modern context while US trust territories and the territory of Guam are edging closer towards autonomy - Australia seems to be returning to it's colonial ways in taking control of the Pacific Islands Forum, taking over Nauru's government, putting it's own police into Papua New Guinea, declaring that the pacific is "our patch" (John Howard 2003), and of course leading an invasion army into the Solomon Islands (although they were "invited" officially) .

I wonder where the UN is now?...

QFF
Fighting for the glory of the Australian Republic.
 
ACAfan
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Wed Mar 16, 2005 9:49 pm

Freddie Laker ... May be at peace with his maker ... But he is a persona non grata ... with IATA
 
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Thu Mar 17, 2005 1:17 am



The car is a nice touch...  Smile

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David L
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Fri Mar 18, 2005 8:19 am

[email protected]:

I've seen a picture of that island before. It was allegedly part of an advertisment for a used car in an Irish publication...

* 1985 Blue Volkswagen Golf
* Only 15 km
* Only first gear and reverse used
* Never driven hard
* Original tires
* Original brakes
* Original fuel and oil
* Only 1 driver
* Owner wishing to sell due to employment lay-off
* Photo Attached

I briefly visited Gan, in the Southern Maldives, years ago when it was an RAF base. It's one island of an atoll and it's just big enough for the runway and a few buildings.
 
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yyz717
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Fri Mar 18, 2005 8:38 am

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 2):
I can answer for Heard and McDonald Island (Yyz717 currently lives there though).

Hehe. I loved the flag so much I had to move there.

Bouvet Island is in the South Pacific and is identified as the world's most isolated island. The average annual temperature is below zero, so nothing grows. The island is barren and no one has ever lived there. How Norway came to claim this island I have no idea.
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prosa
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Fri Mar 18, 2005 12:54 pm

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 24):
Bouvet Island is in the South Pacific and is identified as the world's most isolated island. The average annual temperature is below zero, so nothing grows. The island is barren and no one has ever lived there.

No one lives there? Speak for yourself, you ignorant arrogant human!
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LOT767-300ER
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Fri Mar 18, 2005 1:35 pm

Hey guys check this out....

http://www.government.pn/notesvis.htm

Man, thats scary...
 
iakobos
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Fri Mar 18, 2005 6:52 pm

What about this one ?



Scarborough Reef is in the South China sea.
Like the Paracel, Pratas and Spratly Isl., they are claimed (sometimes with the help of guns) by China, Taiwan, Vietnam, the Philippines and even Malaysia.

The scaffolding supporting the ham radio operator's seat, umbrela, transmitter and antennas was a piece of engineering right out of the mind of those "crazy" hams who go to great lengths to operate from the remotest parts of the planet.
 
ANCFlyer
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RE: Tiny Little Islands

Fri Mar 18, 2005 7:02 pm

Quoting LOT767-300ER (Reply 26):
Hey guys check this out....

http://www.government.pn/notesvis.htm

I always thought it would be cool to visit Pitcairn . . . but alas, no bar and restaurant . . .and no Marriott!  crazy 
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