Kiritimati or Christmas Island is a Pacific Ocean atoll in the northern Line Islands and part of the Republic of Kiribati. A nautical chart is a graphic representation of a maritime area and adjacent Coastal regions The Pacific Ocean is the largest of the Earth 's Oceanic divisions An atoll (pronounced /ˈætʌl/ is an island of Coral that encircles a Lagoon partially or completely The Line Islands, or Equatorial Islands, are a group of eleven Atolls and low coral islands in the central Pacific Ocean south of the Hawaiian Kiribati or ( kirr-i-bas or KEE-ree-buhss ˈkiɾibas in Gilbertese) officially the Republic of Kiribati, is an Island nation located in The island has the greatest land area of any coral atoll in the world: about 322 square kilometres (124 sq mi); it is about 150 km (93 mi) in perimeter, while the lagoon shoreline extends for over 48 km (30 mi). An atoll (pronounced /ˈætʌl/ is an island of Coral that encircles a Lagoon partially or completely  Kiritimati comprises over 70% of the total land area of Kiribati, a nation encompassing 33 Pacific atolls and islands. It lies 232 km (144 mi) north of the Equator, 6,700 km (4,200 mi) from Sydney, and 5,360 km (3,330 mi) from San Francisco. The equator (sometimes referred to colloquially as "the Line") is the intersection of the Earth 's surface with the plane perpendicular to the Sydney (ˈsɪdniː is the most populous city in Australia, with a Metropolitan area population of approximately 4 The City and County of San Francisco is the fourth most populous city
Its roughly 320 km² (120 sq mi) lagoon opens to the sea in the northwest; Burgle Channel (the entrance to the lagoon) is divided into the northern Cook Island Passage and the southern South Passage. A lagoon is a body of comparatively shallow salt or Brackish water separated from the deeper Sea by a shallow or exposed sandbank, coral The southeastern part of the lagoon is partially dried out today; essentially, progressing SE from Burgle Channel, the 160 km² (62 sq mi) main lagoon gradually turns into a network of subsidiary lagoons, tidal flats, partially hypersaline brine ponds and salt pans, which as a whole has about the same area again as the main lagoon. Mudflats (also tidal flats, tide flats, etc are coastal wetlands that form when mud is deposited by tides or rivers Salinity is the Saltiness or dissolved salt content of a body of Water. Brine (lat saltus) is Water saturated or nearly saturated with Salt (NaCl Natural salt pans are flat expanses of Ground covered with Salt and other Minerals usually shining white under the Sun. Thus, the land and lagoon areas can only be given approximately, as no firm boundary exists between the main island body and the salt flats. 
Kiritimati is the first inhabited place on Earth to experience the New Year each year (see also Caroline Atoll, Kiribati). The New Year is an event that happens when a Culture celebrates the end of one Year and the beginning of the next year Caroline Island or Caroline Atoll (also known as Millennium Island) is the easternmost of the uninhabited Coral atolls which comprise the southern Despite being 1,530 miles east of the 180 meridian, a 1995 realignment of the International Dateline by the Republic of Kiribati 'moved' Kiritimati to west of the dateline.
The entire island is a Wildlife Sanctuary; access to five particularly sensitive areas (see below) is restricted. A wildlife refuge, also called a wildlife sanctuary, may be a naturally-occurring sanctuary such as an Island, that provides protection for Species from 
"Kiritimati" may look like a typical "Polynesian" name, but this is by no means correct. Actually, it is a rather straightforward transliteration of "Christmas" into Gilbertese – where the 'ti' combination is pronounced 's' – and thus pronounced [kəˈrɪsməs]. Transliteration is the practice of Transcribing a Word or text written in one Writing system into another writing system or system of rules for such practice Gilbertese or Kiribati (or sometimes Kiribatese, a mixture of both is a Language from the Austronesian family, part of the Similarly Kiribati is a transliteration of Gilberts with the K replacing the G and the R replacing the L. Moreover, Gilbertese is a Micronesian language. The family of Micronesian languages is a branch of the Central-Eastern Oceanic languages.
At Western discovery, Kiritimati was uninhabited. Like on other Line Islands, there may have been a small and/or temporary native population, most probably Polynesian traders and settlers. Polynesia (from Greek: πολύς many, νῆσος island) is a Subregion of Oceania, comprising a large grouping of over These would have found the island a useful replenishing station on the long voyages from the Society Islands to Hawaiʻi, perhaps as early as 400 AD. The Society Islands ( French: Îles de la Société or officially Archipel de la Société) are a group of Islands in the south Pacific The State of Hawaii ( or həˈwaɪʔiː Hawaiian: Mokuāina o Hawaii) is a state in the United States located on an Archipelago in the This trade route was apparently used with some regularity by about 1000 AD. From 1200 AD onwards, Polynesian long-distance voyaging became less frequent, and if there ever was human settlement on Kiritimati, it would have been abandoned in the early-mid second millennium AD. The second millennium is a period of time that commenced on January 1, 1001, and ended on December 31, 2000. Two possible village sites and some stone structures of these early visitors have been located.  Today, most inhabitants are Micronesians, and Gilbertese is the only language of any significance. Micronesia, from the Greek mikros (μικρός (meaning small) and nesos (νῆσος (meaning island) is a Subregion Gilbertese or Kiribati (or sometimes Kiribatese, a mixture of both is a Language from the Austronesian family, part of the English is generally understood, but little used outside the tourism sector. Tourism is Travel for Recreational or Leisure purposes The World Tourism Organization defines tourists as people who "travel
Kiritimati was discovered by Captain James Cook on Christmas Eve (December 24), 1777. Captain James Cook FRS RN ( – 14 February 1779) was an English Explorer, Navigator and Christmas Eve, December 24, is the day before Christmas Day, the celebrated birthday of Jesus. Events 563 - The Byzantine church Hagia Sophia in Constantinople is dedicated for the second time after being destroyed by Earthquakes Year 1777 ( MDCCLXXVII) was a Common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a Common It was claimed by the United States under the Guano Islands Act of 1856, though little actual mining of guano took place. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the The Guano Islands Act ( §§ 1411-1419 is federal legislation passed by the U Guano (from the Quechua 'wanu' via Spanish) is the Feces of Seabirds Bats and seals This claim was formally ceded by the Treaty of Tarawa between US and Kiribati, signed in 1979 and ratified in 1983. On September 20, 1979, representatives of the newly-independent Republic of Kiribati and of the United States met in Tarawa to sign a treaty Permanent settlement started by 1882, mainly by workers in coconut plantations and fishermen, but due to an extreme drought which killed off tens of thousands of Coconut Palms – about 75% of Kiritimati's population of this plant – the island was once again abandoned between 1905 and 1912. 
Many of the toponyms in the island go back to Father Emmanuel Rougier, a French priest who leased the island from 1917 to 1939 and planted some 800,000 coconut trees there. Toponymy refers to the scientific study of place-names ( toponyms) their origins meanings use and Typology. This article is about the country For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic France topics. A priest or priestess is a person having the authority or power to administer religious rites in particular rites of sacrifice to and propitiation of a deity or deities See also Leasing, Renting A lease is a Legal document, but can be an oral arrangement which confers a right on one person (called The Coconut Palm ( Cocos nucifera) is a member of the Family Arecaceae (palm family He lived in his Paris house (now only small ruins) located at Benson Point, across the Burgle Channel from Londres (today London) at Bridges Point where he established the port. London (also Ronton in Gilbertese) is the principal settlement on the Atoll of Kiritimati also known as Christmas Island belonging to Kiribati ||-||-|-||-||-||-||-||-||-|} A port is a facility for receiving Ships and transferring cargo
In World War II, Kiritimati was occupied by the Allies, and the first airstrip was constructed then, for servicing the US Army Air Force weather station communications center. World War II, or the Second World War, (often abbreviated WWII) was a global military conflict which involved a majority of the world's nations, including The Allies of World War II were the countries officially opposed to the Axis powers during the Second World War. An airport is a location where Aircraft such as airplanes, Helicopters and blimps take off and land The United States Army Air Forces ( USAAF) was the military aviation arm of the United States of America during and immediately after World War II. A weather station is a facility with instruments and equipment to make observations of atmospheric conditions in order to provide information to make weather forecasts The airstrip also provided rest and refueling facilities for planes traveling between Hawaii and the South Pacific. There was also a small civilian radio-meteorological research station.
During the Cold War there was some nuclear testing in the Kiritimati area. Operation Grapple, and operations Grapple X, Grapple Y and Grapple Z, were the names of British nuclear tests Cold War is the state of conflict tension and competition that existed between the United States and the Soviet Union (USSR and their respective allies from the Nuclear weapons tests are experiments carried out to determine the effectiveness yield and explosive capability of Nuclear weapons Throughout the twentieth century most nations The British supposedly conducted their first successful hydrogen bomb test at Malden Island on May 15, 1957; Kiritimati was the operation's main base. The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located The Teller–Ulam design is a Nuclear weapon design which is used in Megaton -range Thermonuclear weapons and is more colloquially referred to as "the Malden Island ( sometimes called Independence Island in the nineteenth century is a low arid uninhabited island in the central Pacific Ocean, about in area Events 1252 - Pope Innocent IV issues the Papal bull Ad exstirpanda, which authorizes but also limits the Year 1957 ( MCMLVII) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1957 Gregorian calendar) In fact, this test was a failure, and the first British H-bomb was successfully detonated over the southeastern tip of Kiritimati on November 8, 1957. Operation Grapple, and operations Grapple X, Grapple Y and Grapple Z, were the names of British nuclear tests Operation Grapple, and operations Grapple X, Grapple Y and Grapple Z, were the names of British nuclear tests Events 1519 - Hernán Cortés enters Tenochtitlán and Aztec ruler Moctezuma welcomes him with great a Celebration Year 1957 ( MCMLVII) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1957 Gregorian calendar) Subsequent test series in 1958 (Grapple Y and Z) took place above or near Kiritimati itself. Operation Grapple, and operations Grapple X, Grapple Y and Grapple Z, were the names of British nuclear tests Operation Grapple, and operations Grapple X, Grapple Y and Grapple Z, were the names of British nuclear tests The USA conducted 22 successful nuclear detonations as part of Operation Dominic here in 1962. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the Operation Dominic was a series of 105 Nuclear test explosions conducted in 1962 and 1963 by the United States. Some toponyms (like Banana and Main Camp) come from the nuclear testing period, during which at times over 4,000 servicemen were present. By 1969, military interest in Kiritimati had ceased and the facilities were abandoned and for the most part dismantled. Some communications, transport and logistics facilities, however, were converted for civilian use and it is due to these installations that Kiritimati came to serve as the administrative center for the Line Islands. 
The island's population has strongly increased in recent years, from about 2,000 in 1989 to about 5,000 in the early 2000s. Kiritimati has 2 representatives in the Maneaba ni Maungatabu. Politics of Kiribati takes place in a framework of a parliamentary representative democratic Republic, whereby the President of Kiribati is the Today there are four populated and one abandoned villages on the island:
|No. A village is a clustered human settlement or community, larger than a hamlet, but smaller than a Town or City.||Village||Population|
|3||Banana (Banana Wells)||1170|
London is the main village and port facility. A census is the procedure of acquiring information about every member of a given population London (also Ronton in Gilbertese) is the principal settlement on the Atoll of Kiritimati also known as Christmas Island belonging to Kiribati is a settlement in Kiribati. It is located on the island of Kiritimati. Banana is a settlement on Kiritimati Island in Kiribati. It is located in the northeast of the atoll close to the island's airport Cassidy International Poland is one of four villages on the island of Kiritimati (Christmas Island Kiribati. Paris is an abandoned settlement on Kiritimati Island in Kiribati. Banana is near Cassidy International Airport but may be relocated closer to London to prevent contamination of its groundwater. Cassidy International Airport is an Airport located north of Banana, Kiritimati, Kiribati. The abandoned village of Paris is not listed in census reports anymore. A census is the procedure of acquiring information about every member of a given population
The ministry of the Line and Phoenix islands is located in London. There are also two new high schools on the road between Tabwakea and Banana: one Catholic and one Protestant. High school is the name used in some parts of the world (in particular Scotland, North America and Australia) to describe an institution Protestantism refers to the forms of Christian faith and practice that originated in the 16th century Protestant Reformation. The University of Hawaii has a climatological research facility on Kiritimati. The University of Hawaii, formally the University of Hawaii System and popularly known as UH, is a public co-educational college and university system that confers Meteorology (from Greek grc μετέωρος metéōros, "high in the sky" and grc -λογία -logia) is the Interdisciplinary 
Previously (ended on April 26, 2004) a Boeing 737 charter flight by Air Kiribati, operated by Aloha Airlines, connected Kiritimati to Honolulu every week. Events 1467 - The miraculous image in Our Lady of Good Counsel appear in Genazzano, Italy. "MMIV" redirects here For the Modest Mouse album see " Baron von Bullshit Rides Again " WikipediaWikiProject Aircraft. Please see WikipediaWikiProject Aircraft/page content for recommended layout Air Kiribati is the national Airline of Kiribati operating local passenger services within the Kiribati Islands Aloha Airlines was an American airline headquartered in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA, operating from a hub at Honolulu International Honolulu is the Capital and most populous Census-designated place (CDP in the U Provisional jet flights replaced it for some time. Since October 2005, Air Pacific has made a weekly stop between Honolulu and Nadi in Fiji. Air Pacific Limited, Fiji's international Airline, is based in Nadi, Fiji Islands, operating international and domestic services around the Pacific
Cassidy International Airport (IATA code CXI), the only airport in Kiribati to serve the Americas, is located just north of Banana and North East Point. Cassidy International Airport is an Airport located north of Banana, Kiritimati, Kiribati. The Americas are the lands of the Western hemisphere or New World, consisting of the Continents of North America and South America Banana is a settlement on Kiritimati Island in Kiribati. It is located in the northeast of the atoll close to the island's airport Cassidy International It has a paved runway with a length of 6,900 feet (2,103 m). The abandoned Aeon Field, constructed before the British nuclear tests, is located on the southeastern peninsula, NW of South East Point.
In the early 1950s, Wernher von Braun proposed using this island as a launch site for manned spacecraft. Wernher Magnus Maximilian Freiherr von Braun (March 23 1912 &ndash June 16 1977 a German rocket physicist and astronautics engineer became one of the leading figures in There is a Japanese JAXA satellite tracking station; the abandoned Aeon Field had at one time been proposed for reuse by the Japanese for their now-canceled HOPE-X space shuttle project. The, or JAXA, is Japan's national Aerospace agency JAXA was formed on October 1 2003 as an Independent Administrative Institution through the HOPE was a Japanese experimental Spaceplane project designed by a partnership between NASDA and NAL (both now part of JAXA) started Kiritimati is also located fairly close to the Sea Launch satellite launching spot at 0° N 154° W, about 370 km (200 nautical miles) to the east in international waters.
Most of the atoll's food supplies have to be imported. Potable water can be in short supply, especially around November in La Niña years. Water of sufficient quality to serve as drinking water is termed potable water whether it is used for drinking or not El Niño-Southern Oscillation ( ENSO; commonly referred to as simply El Niño) is a global coupled ocean-atmosphere phenomenon A large and modern jetty, handling some cargo, was built by the Japanese at London. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Japan topics. Marine fish provide a healthy portion of the island's nutrition, although overfishing has caused a drastic decrease in the populations of large, predatory fish over the last several years. Overfishing occurs when Fishing activities reduce fish stocks below an acceptable level
Exports of the atoll are mainly copra (died coconut pulp); the state-owned coconut plantation covers about 51 square kilometres (20 sq mi). Copra is the dried meat or kernel of the Coconut. The name copra is derived from the Malayalam word kopra for dried coconut Fundamentally a plantation is usually a large Farm or estate, especially in a tropical or semitropical country on which Cotton, Tobacco In addition, goods like aquarium fish and seaweed are exported; a 1970s project to commercially breed Artemia salina brine shrimp in the salt ponds was abandoned in 1978. An aquarium (plural aquariums or aquaria) is a Vivarium consisting of at least one transparent side in which Water -dwelling Plants Fish are aquatic Vertebrate animals that are typically ectothermic (previously Cold-blooded) covered with scales, and equipped with two Seaweed is a loose colloquial term encompassing macroscopic Multicellular, benthic marine Algae. In recent years there are attempts to explore the viability of live crayfish and chilled fish exports and salt production. Crayfish, crawfish, crawdads, or crodgers are freshwater Crustaceans resembling small Lobsters to which they are closely 
Furthermore, there is a small amount of tourism, mainly associated with anglers interested in lagoon fishing (for Bonefish in particular) or offshore fishing. Tourism is Travel for Recreational or Leisure purposes The World Tourism Organization defines tourists as people who "travel The bonefish is the Type species of the Albulidae, or Bonefishes. Week-long ecotourism packages during which some of the normally closed areas can be visited are also available. Ecotourism, also known as ecological tourism, is a form of Tourism that appeals to ecologically and socially conscious individuals  There is some tourism-related infrastructure, such as a small hotel, rental facilities, and takeaways. A hotel is an establishment that provides paid lodging usually on a short-term basis
In addition to the main island, there are several smaller ones. Cook Island is part of the atoll proper but unconnected to the Kiritimati mainland. It is a sand/coral island of 19 ha (47 acres), divides Burgle Channel into the northern and the southern entrance, and has a large seabird colony. Explanation The hectare is commonly used in most countries around the world especially in domains concerned with land planning and management such as Agriculture, The acre is a unit of Area in a number of different systems including the imperial and U Islets (motus) in the lagoon include Motu Tabu (3. This is about the professional audio company For other uses see Motu MOTU ( Mark of the Unicorn) is a Music -related 5 ha/8. 6 acres) with its Pisonia forest and the shrub-covered Motu Upua (also called Motu Upou or Motu Upoa, 19 ha/47 acres) at the northern side, and Ngaontetaake (2. Pisonia is a genus of plants Some species for example Pisonia brunoniana of New Zealand, Norfolk Island, Lord Howe Island 7 ha/7 acres) at the eastern side. 
Joe's Hill (originally La colline de Joe) near Artemia Corners on the southeastern peninsula is the highest point on the atoll, at about 13 m (43 ft) ASL). A peninsula is a piece of land that is nearly surrounded by Water but connected to Mainland via an Isthmus. The term above mean sea level ( AMSL) refers to the Elevation (on the ground or Altitude (in the Air) of any object relative to the  On the northwestern peninsula for example, the land raises only to some 7 m (20 ft), which is still considerable for an atoll.
Despite its proximity to the ITCZ, Kiritimati is located in an equatorial dry zone and rainfall is rather low except during El Niño years; 873 mm (34. The Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ, also known as the Intertropical Front, Monsoon trough, Doldrums or the Equatorial El Niño-Southern Oscillation ( ENSO; commonly referred to as simply El Niño) is a global coupled ocean-atmosphere phenomenon 4 in) on average per year, in some years it can be as little as 177 mm (7. 0 in) and much of the flats and ponds can dry up such as in late 1978. On the other hand, in some exceptionally wet years abundant downpours in March-April may result in a total annual precipitation of over 2,500 mm (98 in). Kiritimati is thus affected by regular, severe droughts. A drought is an extended period of months or years when a region notes a deficiency in its water supply These is exacerbated by its geological structure; climatically "dry" Pacific islands are more typically located in the "desert belt" at about 30°N or S latitude. Geology (from Greek γη gê, "earth" and λόγος Logos, "speech" lit Climate encompasses the temperatures humidity rainfall atmospheric particle count and numerous other meteorogical factors in a given region over long periods of A desert is a Landscape or region that receives very little precipitation. Latitude, usually denoted symbolically by the Greek letter phi ( Φ) gives the location of a place on Earth (or other planetary body north or south of the Kiritimati is a raised atoll, and although it does occasionally receive plenty of precipitation, little is retained given the porous carbonatic rock, the thin soil, and the absence of dense vegetation cover on much of the island, while evaporation is constantly high. Carbonate minerals are those Minerals containing the Carbonate Ion: CO32- Soil, often typeset as SOiL, is a four piece rock band from Chicago Illinois United States founded by Shaun Glass Tom Schofield Tim King and Adam Zadel Vegetation is a general term for the plant life of a region it refers to the Ground cover provided by plants Evaporation is the process by which Molecules in a Liquid state (e  Consequently, Kiritimati is one of the rather few places close to the Equator which have an effectively arid climate. The equator (sometimes referred to colloquially as "the Line") is the intersection of the Earth 's surface with the plane perpendicular to the In general terms the Climate of a local or region is said to be arid when it is characterized by a severe lack of available Water, to the extent of hindering 
The temperature is constantly between 24°C and 30°C, with more diurnal than seasonal variation. A day (symbol d is a unit of Time equivalent to 24 Hours and the duration of a single Rotation of planet Earth with respect to the A season is one of the major divisions of the Year, generally based on yearly periodic changes in Weather. Easterly trade winds predominate. The trade winds (also called trades) are the prevailing pattern of easterly winds found in the Tropics near the Earth's Equator. 
The flora and the fauna consist of taxa adapted to drought. In Botany, flora ( Plural: floras or florae has two meanings The first meaning flora of an area or of time period, refers to all Fauna is all of the Animal life of any particular region or time A taxon (plural taxa) or taxonomic unit, is a name designating an organism or a group of Organisms In Biological nomenclature according to Terrestrial fauna is scant; there are no truly native land mammals and only one native land bird – Kiribati's endemic reed-warbler, the Bokikokiko (Acrocephalus aequinoctialis). Terrestrial animals are Animals that live predominantly or entirely on land as compared with Aquatic animals which live predominantly or entirely in the water (e Mammals ( class Mammalia) are a class of Vertebrate Animals characterized by the presence of Sweat glands, including sweat glands Birds ( class Aves) are bipedal endothermic ( Warm-blooded) Vertebrate animals that lay eggs. Endemism is the Ecological state of being unique to a place Endemic species are not naturally found elsewhere The Acrocephalus warblers are small insectivorous Passerine Birds belonging to the genus Acrocephalus. UserPolbot. -->The Bokikokiko ( Acrocephalus aequinoctialis) is a species of Old World warbler in the The 1957 attempt to introduce the Endangered Rimitara Lorikeet (Vini kuhlii) has by and large failed; a few birds seem to linger on, but the lack of abundant Coconut Palm forest, on which this tiny parrot depends, makes Kiritimati a suboptimal habitat for this species. An endangered species is a population of an organism which is at risk of becoming Extinct because it is either few in numbers or threatened by changing environmental or predation UserPolbot. --> The Rimatara Lorikeet, Rimitara Lorikeet, Kuhl's Lorikeet, Kuhl's Lory, or The Coconut Palm ( Cocos nucifera) is a member of the Family Arecaceae (palm family In Biology, a species is one of the basic units of Biological classification and a Taxonomic rank.
The natural vegetation on Kiritimati consists mostly of low shrubland and grassland. Shrubland (synonymous with Scrubland) is a habitat type dominated by woody Shrubs A shrub is a perennial woody plant that branches at ground level to form several Grasslands (also called greenswards) are areas where the Vegetation is dominated by Grasses ( Poaceae) and other Herbaceous (non-woody What little woodland exists is mainly open Coconut Palm (Cocos nucifera) plantation. The Coconut Palm ( Cocos nucifera) is a member of the Family Arecaceae (palm family There are three small woods of Pisonia grandis catchbird trees, at Southeast Point, Northwest Point, and on Motu Tabu. Pisonia grandis is a Tree species distributed throughout the Coral Cays of the Indian and Pacific Oceans The species The latter was planted there in recent times. About 50 introduced plant species are found on Kiritimati; as most are plentiful around settlements, former military sites and roads, it seems that these only became established in the 20th century. In Biology, a species is one of the basic units of Biological classification and a Taxonomic rank. The twentieth century of the Common Era began on 
Scaevola taccada (Beach Naupaka) is the most common shrub on Kiritimati; Beach Naupaka scrub dominates the vegetation on much of the island, either as pure stands or interspersed with Velvet Soldierbush (Tournefortia argentea) and Bay Cedar (Suriana maritima). A shrub or Bush is a horticultural rather than strictly botanical category of Woody plant, distinguished from a Tree Heliotropium foertherianum ( Tree Heliotrope, Velvet Soldierbush or Octopus Bush) is a species of Plant in the Boraginaceae The latter species is dominant on the drier parts of the lagoon flats where it grows up to 2 meters (7 ft) tall. Velvet Soldierbush is most commonly found a short distance from the sea- or lagoon-shore. In some places near the seashore, a low vegetation dominated by Polynesian Heliotrope (Heliotropium anomalum), Yellow Purslane (Portulaca lutea) and Common Purslane (P. Portulaca oleracea ( Common Purslane, also known as Verdolaga, Pigweed, Little Hogweed or Pusley) is an annual oleracea) is found. In the south and on the sandier parts, Sida fallax, also growing up to 2 meters tall, is abundant. Sida fallax (called ‘ilima in Hawai‘ian is a small Herbaceous plant in the Hibiscus family (Malvaceae On the southeastern peninsula, S. fallax grows more stunted, and Polynesian Heliotrope, Yellow and Common Purslane as well as the spiderling Boerhavia repens, the parasitic vine Cassytha filiformis, and Pacific Island Thintail (Lepturus repens) supplement it. Boerhavia, the spiderlings, is a Genus of about 40 Species of annual or perennial Herbaceous plants in Parasitism is a type of symbiotic relationship between Organisms of different Species. A vine is any plant of Genus Vitis (the Grape plants or by extension any similar climbing or trailing plant The last species dominates in the coastal grasslands. The wetter parts of the lagoon shore are often covered by abundant growth of Shoreline Purslane (Sesuvium portulacastrum). Sesuvium portulacastrum, commonly known as Shoreline Purslane or (ambiguously " Sea purslane ", is a sprawling perennial herb that grows There is a single endemic plant species recorded from Kiritimati, the dodder Cuscuta campestris. Endemism is the Ecological state of being unique to a place Endemic species are not naturally found elsewhere Cuscuta ( Dodder) is a genus of about 100-170 species of yellow orange or red (rarely green Parasitic plants Formerly treated as the only genus in 
Perhaps the most destructive of the recently-introduced plants is the camphorweed Pluchea odorata (Sweetscent), which is considered an invasive weed as it overgrows and displaces herbs and grasses. UserPolbot. --> Pluchea is a genus of Flowering plant in the Asteraceae family Introduced species|Weed Invasive species is a phrase with several definitions The introduced creeper Tribulus cistoides, despite having also spread conspicuously, is considered to be more beneficial than harmful to the ecosystem, as it provides good nesting sites for some seabirds. An ecosystem is a natural unit consisting of all plants animals and micro-organisms( Biotic factors in an area functioning together with all of the non-living physical ( Seabirds are Birds that have adapted to life within the marine environment 
More than 35 bird species have been recorded from Kitirimati. In Biology, a species is one of the basic units of Biological classification and a Taxonomic rank. As noted above, only the Bokikokiko (Acrocephalus aequinoctialis), perhaps a few Rimitara Lorikeets (Vini kuhlii) – if any remain at all – and the occasional Eastern Reef Egret (Egretta sacra) make up the entire landbird fauna. UserPolbot. -->The Bokikokiko ( Acrocephalus aequinoctialis) is a species of Old World warbler in the UserPolbot. --> The Rimatara Lorikeet, Rimitara Lorikeet, Kuhl's Lorikeet, Kuhl's Lory, or The Eastern Reef Egret, Egretta sacra also known as Pacific Reef Egret is a type of Egret (a subclass of Herons. About 1,000 adult Bokikokikos are to be found at any date, but mainly in mixed grass/shrubland away from the settlements. 
On the other hand, seabirds are plentiful on Kiritimati, and make op the bulk of the breeding bird population. Seabirds are Birds that have adapted to life within the marine environment There are 18 species of seabirds breeding on the island, and Kitirimati is one of the most important breeding grounds anywhere in the world for several of these:
Kiritimati's lagoon and the saltflats are a prime location for migratory birds to stop over or even stay all winter. Tropicbirds are a family, Phaethontidae, of tropical pelagic Seabirds There are three species in one Genus Phaethon The Red-tailed Tropicbird Phaethon rubricauda is a Seabird that nests across the Indian and Pacific Oceans It is the rarest of the Tropicbirds Charadriiformes is a diverse order of small to medium-large Birds It includes about 350 Species and has members in all parts of the world The Black Noddy or White-capped Noddy ( Anous minutus) is a Seabird from the Tern family. UserPolbot. --> The Little White Tern or Little Fairy Tern ( Gygis microrhyncha) is a species of The Sooty Tern, Onychoprion fuscatus (formerly Sterna fuscata) is a Seabird of the Tern family (Sternidae The Grey-backed Tern, Onychoprion lunatus, is a Seabird in the Tern family. UserPolbot. --> The Blue Noddy ( Procelsterna cerulea) is a species of Tern in the Sternidae Procellariiformes is an order of Seabirds that comprises four families: the Albatrosses procellariids, Storm-petrels and Diving UserPolbot. --> The Polynesian Storm-petrel ( Nesofregetta fuliginosa) is a species of Seabird in The Phoenix Petrel, Pterodroma alba is a medium-sized up to 35cm long tropical Seabird with a wingspan of 83cm The Christmas Shearwater, Puffinus nativitatis, is a medium sized Shearwater of the Tropical Central Pacific. In Biology a population is the collection of inter-breeding organisms of a particular Species; in Sociology The Wedge-tailed Shearwater, Puffinus pacificus is a medium-large Shearwater in the Seabird family Procellariidae. The Pelecaniformes are an order of medium-sized and large waterbirds found worldwide The Lesser Frigatebird, Fregata ariel, is a species of Frigatebird. The Great Frigatebird ( Fregata minor) is a large dispersive Seabird in the Frigatebird family. The Masked Booby, Sula dactylatra, is a large Seabird of the Gannet family Sulidae. The Red-footed Booby, Sula sula, is a large Seabird of the Gannet family Sulidae. Bird migration refers to the regular seasonal journeys undertaken by many species of Birds Bird movements include those made in response to changes in food availability The most commonly migrants are Ruddy Turnstone (Arenaria interpres), Pacific Golden Plover (Pluvialis fulva), Bristle-thighed Curlew (Numenius tahitiensis) and Wandering Tattler (Tringa incana); other seabirds, waders and even dabbling ducks can be encountered every now and then. The Ruddy Turnstone ( Arenaria interpres) is a small wading Bird, one of two species of Turnstone in the genus Arenaria. The Pacific Golden Plover ( Pluvialis fulva) is a medium-sized Plover. The Bristle-thighed Curlew, Numenius tahitiensis, is a large shorebird that breeds in Alaska and winters on tropical Pacific islands The Wandering Tattler, Tringa incana (formerly Heteroscelus incanus: Pereira & Baker 2005 Banks et al Seabirds are Birds that have adapted to life within the marine environment Waders, called shorebirds in North America (where "wader" is used to refer to long-legged wading Birds such as Storks and The Anatinae is a Subfamily of the family Anatidae ( Swans geese and Ducks. 
See also "Extinction" below.
The only mammal native to the region is the common Polynesian Rat (Rattus exulans), but even this would seem to have been introduced by native seafarers numerous centuries before Cook found Kiritimati in 1777. The Polynesian Rat, or Pacific Rat ( Rattus exulans) known to the Māori as kiore, is the third most widespread species of Rat in Black Rats (Rattus rattus) were present at some time, perhaps introduced by 19th century sailors or during the nuclear tests. They have not been able to gain a foothold between predation by cats and competitive exclusion by Polynesian Rats, and no Black Rat population is found on Kiritimati today anymore. In Community ecology, the competitive exclusion principle, sometimes referred to as Gause's Law of competitive exclusion or just Gause's Law 
Up to 2,000 feral cats can in some years be found on the island; the population became established in the 19th century. A feral cat (or stray cat, alley cat) is a Cat which has been separated from Domestication through abandonment loss or running away and becomes Their depredations seriously harm the birdlife. Since the late 19th century, they have driven about 60% of the seabird species from the mainland completely, and during particular dry spells they will cross the mudflats and feast upon the birds on the motus. Grey-backed Tern chicks seem to be a favorite food of the local cat population. The Grey-backed Tern, Onychoprion lunatus, is a Seabird in the Tern family. There are some measures being taken to ensure the cat population does not grow. That lowering the cat population by some amount would much benefit Kiritimati and its inhabitants is generally accepted, but the situation is too complex to simply go and eradicate them outright (which is theoretically possible; see Marion Island). The Prince Edward Islands are two small islands in the Sub-antarctic Indian Ocean that are politically part of South Africa. A limited population of feral pigs exists. A feral organism is one that has escaped from Domestication and returned partly or wholly to its wild state They were once plentiful and wreaked havoc especially on the Onychoprion and noddies. Onychoprion, the brown-backed terns, are a Genus of Seabirds in the Tern family. Noddy is a character created by British Children's author Enid Blyton, originally published between 1949 and 1963 Pig hunting by locals has been encouraged, and was highly successful at limiting the pig population to a sustainable level, while providing a source of cheap protein for the islanders. 
There are some "supertramp" lizards which have reached the island by their own means. In Ecology, a supertramp species is any type of animal which follows the "supertramp" strategy of high dispersion among many different habitats towards none of which Lizards are a large and widespread group of Reptiles of the order Squamata, with nearly 5000 species and ranging across all continents except Commonly seen are the Mourning Gecko (Lepidodactylus lugubris) and the skink Cryptoblepharus boutonii; the Four-clawed Gecko (Gehyra mutilata) is less often encountered. The Mourning Gecko or Common Smooth-Scaled Gecko Lepidodactylus lugubris is a species of Gecko. Skinks are the most diverse group of Lizards They make the family Scincidae which shares the superfamily or infraorder Scincomorpha with several other The four-clawed gecko ( Gehyra mutilata, also known as the stump-toed gecko, tender-skinned house gecko, sugar lizard, or Pacific gecko 
Green Turtles (Chelonia mydas) regularly nest in small numbers on Kiritimati. "Chelonia" redirects here It is also the name of the Superorder uniting turtles tortoises and terrapins ( Testudines) with the "proto-turtle" The lagoon is famous among sea anglers worldwide for its Bonefish (Albula vulpes), and has been stocked with Oreochromis tilapia to decrease overfishing of marine species. The bonefish is the Type species of the Albulidae, or Bonefishes. Oreochromis is a large Genus of Tilapiine Cichlids Fishes endemic to Africa Tilapia (təˌlɑpiə is the common name for nearly a hundred Species of Cichlid Fishes from the Tilapiine cichlid tribe Overfishing occurs when Fishing activities reduce fish stocks below an acceptable level Though the tilapias thrive in brackish water of the flats, they will not last long should they escape in the surrounding ocean. 
There are some crustaceans of note to be found on Kiritimati and in the waters immediately adjacent. Structure of crustaceans As Arthropods crustaceans have a stiff Exoskeleton, which must be shed to allow the animal to grow ( Ecdysis or molting The amphibious Coconut Crab (Birgus latro) is not as common as for example on Teraina. The coconut crab ( Birgus latro) is the largest land-living Arthropod in the world Teraina, also known as Washington Island (both names are constitutional is a coral Atoll in the central Pacific Ocean, part of the Northern Line Islands Ghost crabs (genus Ocypode), Cardisoma carnifex and Geograpsus grayi land crabs, the Strawberry Land Hermit Crab (Coenobita perlatus), and the introduced brine shrimp Artemis salina which populates the saline ponds are also notable. A genus (plural genera from Γένος Latin genus "descent family type gender" is a low-level Taxonomic Cardisoma carnifex is a species of terrestrial Crab found in coastal regions of eastern Africa and the Indo-Pacific. Gecarcinidae is a family of true Crabs that are adapted for terrestrial existence commonly known as land crabs. The strawberry land hermit crab ( Coenobita perlatus) is a Species of terrestrial Hermit crab. Brine shrimp are a species of aquatic Crustaceans of the Genus Artemia. 
In December 1960, the British colonial authority gazetted Kiritimati as a bird sanctuary under the 1938 Gilbert and Ellice Island Colony Wild Birds Protection Ordinance of 1938. An animal sanctuary is a facility where Animals are brought to live and be protected for the rest of their lives Access to Cook Island, Motu Tabu and Motu Upua was restricted. Kititimati was declared a Wildlife Sanctuary in May 1975, in accordance with the Wildlife Conservation Ordinance of the then self-governing colony. A wildlife refuge, also called a wildlife sanctuary, may be a naturally-occurring sanctuary such as an Island, that provides protection for Species from Ngaontetaake and the Sooty Tern breeding grounds at North West Point also became restricted-access zones. The Sooty Tern, Onychoprion fuscatus (formerly Sterna fuscata) is a Seabird of the Tern family (Sternidae Two years later, active conservation measures got underway. 
To a limited extent, permits to enter the restricted areas for purposes like research or small-scale ecotourism are given. Ecotourism, also known as ecological tourism, is a form of Tourism that appeals to ecologically and socially conscious individuals Kiribati's Wildlife Conservation Unit participates in the Kiritimati Development Committee and the Local Land Planning Board, and there exists an integrated program of wildlife conservation and education. New Zealand is a major sponsor of conservation efforts on Kiritimati. New Zealand is an Island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses (the North Island and the South Island 
Egg collecting for food on a massive scale was frequent in the past but is now outlawed. It is to be noted that the Sooty Terns for example could sustain occasional collection of effectively all of a season's eggs (over 10 million), if given sufficient time to recover and if cats are absent. Even egg collecting on a scale that significantly decreases costly food imports thus in theory could be possible, but not until the cat and rat populations have been brought under control. Poaching remains a concern; with the population rising and spreading out on Kiritimati, formerly remote bird colonies became more accessible and especially the Red-tailed Tropicbirds and the Sula are strongly affected by hunting and disturbance. Poaching is the illegal Hunting, Fishing or Harvesting of wild plants or animals The Red-tailed Tropicbird Phaethon rubricauda is a Seabird that nests across the Indian and Pacific Oceans It is the rarest of the Tropicbirds Tropicbirds are mainly poached for their feathers which are used in local arts and handicraft; it would certainly be possible to obtain them from living birds as it was routinely done at the heigth of the Polynesian civilization. 
It may seem that the erstwhile numbers of seabirds may only ever be approached again even remotely is the wholesale eradication of these pests. A pest is an organism which has characteristics that are regarded by Humans as injurious or unwanted While this has been since shown to be feasible, it is not clear whether even a severe curtailing of the cat population would be desirable. Though it previously was assumed that the small Polynesian Rat is of little if any harm for seabirds, even house mice have been shown to predate seabird nestlings. The House Mouse ( Mus musculus) is one of the most numerous species of the genus Mus commonly termed a Mouse. Most nesting birds, in particularly Procellariiformes, are now accepted to be jeopardized by Rattus exulans. Procellariiformes is an order of Seabirds that comprises four families: the Albatrosses procellariids, Storm-petrels and Diving The Kiritimati cats are meanwhile very fond of young seabirds; it even seems that their behavior has shifted accordingly, with cats being less territorial generally and congregating in numbers at active bird colonies, and generally eschewing to hunt rats when seabird chicks are in plenty. In Ethology, Sociobiology and Behavioral ecology, the term territory refers to any sociographical area that an Animal of a particular Species 
Though control of cats should be undertaken, it needs to be carefully controlled and accompanied by in-depth study. As cat populations are lowered, it must be feared that the rats respond with an increase before many birds will, trading one threat for another (see also Macquarie Island, where rabbit populations exploded after cat eradication). Macquarie Island lies in the southwest corner of the Pacific Ocean, about half-way between Australia and Antarctica. It might, in the long run, even make matters worse as the rats are less unwilling to cross the shallows to get to especially plentiful feeding sites than cats. Possession of an unneutered female cat on Kiritimati is illegal, and owners need to prevent their domestic cats from running wild (such animals are usually quickly killed in traps set for this purpose). Nighttime cat hunting has made little effect on the cat population. But as noted above, vigorous protecting of active nesting grounds from cats by traps, poison and supplemented by shooting while otherwise leaving them alone to hunt rats may well be the optimal solution. 
The United Kingdom detonated some 5 megatons of nuclear payload near and 1. The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located 8 megatons directly above Kiritimati in 1957/58, while the USA between 25 April and 11 July 1962 successfully tested nuclear devices of about 24 megatons payload altogether in the vicinity of the island. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the Events 1607 - Eighty Years' War: The Dutch fleet destroys the anchored Spanish fleet at Gibraltar. Events 911 - Signing of the Treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte between Charles the Simple and Rollo of Normandy. Year 1962 ( MCMLXII) was a Common year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1962 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. During the British Grapple X test of November 8, 1957, which took place directly above the southeastern tip of Kiritimati, yield was stronger than expected and there was some blast damage in the settlements. Operation Grapple, and operations Grapple X, Grapple Y and Grapple Z, were the names of British nuclear tests Events 1519 - Hernán Cortés enters Tenochtitlán and Aztec ruler Moctezuma welcomes him with great a Celebration Year 1957 ( MCMLVII) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1957 Gregorian calendar) The explosive yield of a nuclear weapon is the amount of Energy, called the Yield, discharged when a Nuclear weapon is detonated expressed usually Islanders were usually not evacuated during the nuclear testing, but there is no reliable data of the environmental and public health impact. Nuclear weapons tests are experiments carried out to determine the effectiveness yield and explosive capability of Nuclear weapons Throughout the twentieth century most nations  A 1975 study claimed that there was negligible radiation hazard; certainly, fallout was successfully minimized. Fallout is the residual radiation hazard from a Nuclear explosion, so named because it "falls out" of the atmosphere into which it is spread during the explosion More recently however, a Massey University study of New Zealand found chromosomal translocations to be increased about threefold on average in veterans who participated in the tests; most of the relevant data remains classified to date however. Massey University (Te Kunenga ki Pūrehuroa is New Zealand 's largest university with almost 40000 students New Zealand is an Island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses (the North Island and the South Island In Genetics, a chromosome translocation is a Chromosome abnormality caused by rearrangement of parts between nonhomologous Chromosomes.
The 1982/83 "mega-El Niño" devastated seabird populations on Kiritimati. El Niño-Southern Oscillation ( ENSO; commonly referred to as simply El Niño) is a global coupled ocean-atmosphere phenomenon In some species, mortality rose to 90% and breeding success dropped to zero during that time.  In general, El Niño conditions will cause seabird populations to drop, taking several years to recover at the present density of predators. Global warming impact on Kiritimati is thus unpredictable. Global warming is the increase in the average measured temperature of the El Niño events seem to become shorter but more frequent in a warmer climate. Much of the island's infrastructure and habitation, with the notable exception of the airport area, is located to the leeward and thus somewhat protected from storms. Windward is the direction from which the wind is blowing at the time in question A raising sea level does not appear to be particularly problematic; the increasing flooding of the subsidiary lagoons would provide easily-observed forewarning, and might even benefit seabird populations by making the motus less accessible to predators. In fact, geological data suggests that Kiritimati has withstood prehistoric sea level changes well. Geology (from Greek γη gê, "earth" and λόγος Logos, "speech" lit  The biggest hazard caused by a changing climate would seem to be more prolonged and/or severe droughts, which could even enforce the island's abandonment as they did in 1905. However, it is not clear how weather patterns would change, and it may be that precipitation increases.
The type specimen of the Tuamotu Sandpiper (Prosobonia cancellata) was collected on Kiritimati in 1778, probably on January 1 or 2, during Captain Cook's visit. In biology a type is that which fixes a name to a Taxon. Depending on the nomenclature code which is applied to the organism in question a type may be a specimen The Tuamotu Sandpiper, Prosobonia cancellata, is an endangered member of the large Wader family Scolopacidae, that is endemic to the Year 1778 ( MDCCLXXVIII) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or New Year See also New Year The Ancient Romans began their consular year on January 1st since 153 BC Events 366 - The Alamanni cross the frozen Rhine River in large numbers invading the Roman Empire. Captain James Cook FRS RN ( – 14 February 1779) was an English Explorer, Navigator and  The expedition's naturalist William Anderson observed the bird, and it was painted by William Ellis (linked below). Natural history is the Scientific research of Plants or Animals leaning more towards the Observational than Experimental methods The single specimen was in Joseph Banks's collection at the end of the 18th century, but later was lost or destroyed. Sir Joseph Banks 1st Baronet, GCB, PRS (13 February 1743 &ndash 19 June 1820 was an English naturalist, botanist and patron of There is some taxonomic dispute regarding the Kiritimati population. Taxonomy is the practice and science of classification The word comes from the Greek, taxis (meaning 'order' 'arrangement' and, nomos  As all Prosobonia seem(ed) to be resident birds unwilling to undertake long-distance migrations, an appropriate treatment would be to consider the extinct population the nominate subspecies, as Prosobonia cancellata cancellata or Kiritimati Sandpiper, distinct from the surviving Tuamotu Islands population more than 2,000 km (1,200 miles) to the southeast. The two to four species of Polynesian sandpipers, the only members of the genus Prosobonia, are small wading Birds confined to remote In Zoology, as in other branches of Biology, subspecies is the Taxonomic rank immediately subordinate to a Species. The Tuamotus or the Tuamotu Archipelago ( French: Îles Tuamotu officially Archipel des Tuamotu) are a chain of atolls in French Polynesia
It may have been, but probably was not, limited to Kiritimati; while no remains have been found, little fieldwork has been conducted and judging from the Tuamotu Sandpiper's habits, almost all Line Islands would have offered suitable habitat. The Line Islands, or Equatorial Islands, are a group of eleven Atolls and low coral islands in the central Pacific Ocean south of the Hawaiian A habitat (which is Latin for "it inhabits" is an Ecological or environmental area that is inhabited by a particular Species. The Kiritimati population of P. cancellata disappeared in the earlier part of the 19th century or so, almost certainly due to predation by introduced mammals. While Prosobonia generally manage to hold their own against Polynesian Rats, they are highly vulnerable to the Black Rat and feral cats. The Polynesian Rat, or Pacific Rat ( Rattus exulans) known to the Māori as kiore, is the third most widespread species of Rat in A feral cat (or stray cat, alley cat) is a Cat which has been separated from Domestication through abandonment loss or running away and becomes  Given the uncertainties surrounding the introduction date and maximum population of the former, the cats seem to be the main culprits in the Kiritimati Sandpiper's extinction.
Given that the island was apparently settled to some extent in prehistoric times, it may already have lost bird species then. The geological data indicates that Kiritimati is quite old, was never underwater in the Holocene at least, and thus it might have once harbored highly distinct wetland birds. The Holocene is a Geological epoch which began approximately 10000 years ago (about 8000 BC The limited overall habitat diversity on Kiritimati nonetheless limits the range of such hypothetical taxa, as does biogeography due to its remote location. A habitat (which is Latin for "it inhabits" is an Ecological or environmental area that is inhabited by a particular Species. A taxon (plural taxa) or taxonomic unit, is a name designating an organism or a group of Organisms In Biological nomenclature according to Biogeography is the study of the distribution of Biodiversity over Space and Time. At least one, possibly several Gallirallus and/or Porzana rails make the most likely candidates, given their former presence in the region and that conditions on Kiritimati would seem well suited. Gallirallus is a Genus that contains about a dozen living species of rails that live in the Australasian Pacific region Porzana is a genus of Crakes It has a global distribution contains 13 living species and 4-5 recently extinct ones The rails, or Rallidae, are a large cosmopolitan family of small to medium-sized Birds The family exhibits considerable diversity Perhaps a Todiramphus kingfisher was also present; such a bird would probably have belonged to the Sacred Kingfisher (T. Todiramphus is a genus of Kingfishers in the family Halcyonidae. Kingfishers are small bright colored Birds of the three families Alcedinidae ( River kingfishers, Halcyonidae ( Tree kingfishers, and Cerylidae ( Water The Sacred Kingfisher ( Todiramphus sanctus) is a Tree kingfisher found in the Mangroves Forests, and river valleys of Australia, sanctus) group as that species today occurs as a vagrant in Micronesia, and related forms are resident in SE Polynesia. Micronesia, from the Greek mikros (μικρός (meaning small) and nesos (νῆσος (meaning island) is a Subregion Polynesia (from Greek: πολύς many, νῆσος island) is a Subregion of Oceania, comprising a large grouping of over These birds would have fallen victim to the Polynesian Rats and, in the case of the rails which would have almost certainly been flightless, hunting by natives. Flightless birds are birds which lack the ability to fly relying instead on their ability to run or swim and are thought to have evolved from their flying ancestors