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Rendova Island

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Rendova is an island in the Western Province of the Solomon Islands in the South Pacific, east of Papua New Guinea.

Rendova
Rendova Island NASA.jpg
NASA image of Rendova
Solomon Islands - Rendova.PNG
Geography
LocationSouth Pacific
Coordinates8°32′00″S 157°20′00″E / 8.5333333°S 157.3333333°E / -8.5333333; 157.3333333Coordinates: 8°32′00″S 157°20′00″E / 8.5333333°S 157.3333333°E / -8.5333333; 157.3333333
ArchipelagoNew Georgia Islands
Area411.3 km2 (158.8 sq mi)
Length40 km (25 mi)
Highest elevation1,050 m (3,440 ft)
Administration
ProvinceWestern Province
Demographics
Population3,679 (1999 estimate)

Contents

GeographyEdit

Rendova Island is a roughly rectangularly-shaped island, located in the South Pacific in the New Georgia Islands. The length of the island is about 40 kilometers. To the north is the island of New Georgia and to the east is the island of Vangunu. Rendova is a volcanic island, with a central stratovolcano cone, with a height of 1,050 metres (3,440 ft) which last erupted in the Pleistocene; however, the island is subject to frequent earthquakes. The island is surrounded in some places by a coral reef. The climate on Rendova is wet and tropical, and the island is subject to frequent cyclones.

Flora and faunaEdit

The black-sand beaches along the southwest coast of Rendova are important nesting grounds for the critically endangered leatherback turtle.[1] Community-based conservation organisation, the Tetepare Descendants' Association, runs a leatherback conservation program in the villages of Baniata, Havilla and Retavo on this coastline.[1]

PopulationEdit

In 1999, the population of Rendova was estimated at 3,679 people. There are two indigenous languages spoken on Rendova Island: the Austronesian language Ughele in the north, and the Papuan language Touo in the south.

HistoryEdit

 
American landing at Rendova Island

On March 15, 1893 Rendova was declared part of the British Solomon Islands protectorate. The island was occupied by the Empire of Japan in the early stages of World War II. On June 21, 1943, the United States staged the Landings on Rendova which quickly overcame the 300-man Japanese garrison as part of a strategy to disrupt the supply line to the Japanese garrison on the island of New Georgia. The island was subsequently used as a base by the United States Navy for PT boat operations. Solomon Islanders Biuku Gasa and Eroni Kumana paddled their dugout canoe 35 miles (60 km) to reach the base and deliver a message inscribed on a coconut from then-Lieutenant (junior grade) John F. Kennedy after his PT boat, PT 109, was run down by the Japanese destroyer IJNS Amagiri and he and his crew were stranded on one of the local islands.[2][3]

Since 1978, the island has been part of the independent state of the Solomon Islands

In popular cultureEdit

Rendova is the setting for the humorous book Solomon Time by Will Randall, about a British school teacher who moves to a village on Rendova to help organise a community project.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Research and Monitoring". Tetepare Descendants' Association. Retrieved 29 May 2015.
  2. ^ American Warriors:Five Presidents in the Pacific Theater of World War II, Burd Street Press, ISBN 1-57249-260-0, 2003 [1] Archived 2012-07-07 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ PT 109, Donovan, R.J., McGraw Hill, c. 1961, 2001, ISBN 0-07-137643-7

External linksEdit