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North America>>Bakers Island

Baker Island

Baker Island is situated towards the north of the equator. The island is uninhabited because there is no source of natural fresh water in the island. Moreover, the lack of trees and vegetation also makes life impossible here. The island simply possesses scanty grass, lifeless vines and shrubs in the name of plant life. The island however, gives shelter to marine wildlife along with seabirds and shorebirds. The island is the natural habitat of many endangered species, which are said to be species of high priority in terms of national conservation scheme. These are many species of shorebirds that dwell in the shores of the island. Along with birds, rare species of turtles like Green turtles and hawksbill turtles are also seen along the reef of the island.

Political Overview
The political status of Baker Island is of a Dependency. This island is an unincorporated territory of the United States. The island is managed by the US Fish and Wildlife Service division from Washington DC. As far as laws of the Island are concerned, the US laws are applied where necessary.

The island came into possession of the US in 1857. The US and British companies used to mine resources initially. Though a brief attempt to colonize the island has been initiated, it got shelved with the start of World War II. After that, the island got abandoned. There is no trace of any economic activity being done in Baker Island.

Geographical Overview
The geographic coordinates of the island is between 0 13 N, 176 31 W with a small coastline of
4.8 km. Baker Island experiences an equatorial climate with sparse rainfall and scorching sun. The island also gets regular wind all the time. The most concerning environmental issue related to Baker Island is that lack of natural fresh water resources.

Tourism in Baker Island
There is hardly any tourist activity in Baker Island. Permission for an entry to the island requires special-use permit from US Fish and Wildlife Service. Moreover, this permit is also restricted to scientists and educationalists. The US Fish and Wildlife Service visit this island annually.

The only constructional structure existing in the island is a cemetery and bits and pieces of structures from early settlement, which are situated near the middle of the west coast. In addition, the 46 m wide and 1,600 m long airstrip is another noticeable remnant from the time when the island used to be U.S. military occupation during the time of World War II from 1942 to 1946.

At present, the island is a part of the Baker Island National Wildlife Refuge of the US. There are innumerable species of seabirds that breed at Baker Island. It is said that as many as 20 such species of rare birds, both seabirds and shorebirds, live in the island. Some such species include frigatebird, sooty tern, brown noddy and so on. The island also serves as the winter dwelling and rest stop for many arctic-breeding shorebirds.


Political map Bakers Island