New Zealand Sub-Antarctic Islands

New Zealand Sub-Antarctic Islands

The New Zealand Subantarctic Islands comprise the five southernmost groups of the New Zealand outlying islands. They are collectively designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Most of the islands lie near the southeast edge of the largely submerged continent centred on New Zealand called Zealandia, which was riven from Australia 60-85 million years ago and from Antarctica between 130 and 85 million years ago.

Until 1995, scientific research staff were stationed permanently at a meteorological station on Campbell Island. Since then, the islands have been uninhabited, though they are periodically visited by researchers and tourists. The islands are:

Antipodes Islands: main island, plus Bollons Island, the Windward Islands, Orde Lees Island, Leeward Island, and South Islet, plus minor rocks
Auckland Islands: Auckland Island, Adams Island, Disappointment Island, Enderby Island, Ewing Island and Rose Island, plus minor rocks
Bounty Islands: two small groups of islets, the Western Group and the Eastern Group, plus minor rocks
Campbell Island group: Campbell Island, the main island, plus several minor rocks and small islets surrounding Campbell Island, including New Zealand’s southernmost point, Jacquemart Island
The Snares: Northeast Island, High Island, Broughton Island, Alert Stack, Tahi, Rua, Toru, Wha, and Rima, plus minor rocks
They share some features with Australia’s Macquarie Island to the west.

New Zealand also has territorial claims, held in abeyance under the Antarctic Treaty System, over several islands close to the Antarctic mainland, including:

Ross Island and the rest of the Ross Archipelago
Balleny Islands: Young Island, Buckle Island, and Sturge Island, plus several smaller islets
Roosevelt Island
Scott Island and Haggits Pillar
Of these, Ross Island is inhabited by the scientific staff of several research stations, notably at McMurdo Sound and Scott Base.

Protection of reserves were strengthened in 2014, becoming the largest natural sanctuary in the nation.

The New Zealand Subantarctic Islands comprise the five southernmost groups of the New Zealand outlying islands.

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