August 21, 2009

Ball's Pyramid: Tallest Volcanic Stack - Ocean Mountain

Ball’s Pyramid is all that remains from a shield volcano that was formed 7 million years ago and is the tallest volcanic stack in the world. Located 20 km southeast of Lord Howe Island, in the Pacific Ocean, Ball’s Pyramid rises 562 meters above the waters.


It was discovered in 1788, by Lieutenant Henry Ball, but no one was able to climb to its summit until 1965. In 1982 climbing was banned and soon after all access to the island was restricted. Nowadays, the policy has changed and climbing is allowed, but only under strict conditions.


In 2001 researchers found a small population of Lord Howe Island stick insects, a species thought to have been eradicated by the black rats that were introduced on Howe Island. The 24 rare inhabitants found on Ball’s Pyramid are now being bred in captivity, in hopes of reviving the species.







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