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Tetra-point location: Mt. Green.

The Image

Ascension Island (7"55' S, 14"25' W) is located in the South Atlantic ocean midway between the African continent and Brasil.
The top of Green mountain is very green with bamboo, banana tress, eucalyptus, and wild ginger growing in wild abandon. Indeed the paths near the top have to be regularly visited with a team armed with machetes to keep them clear. There are 44 volcanic peaks on the island, spread over its 35 square miles. Although no-one can be quite sure, the last eruption may have occurred in the last 500-700 year and one wag's story has it that Ascension was discovered as soon as it was cool enough to land on.
It is likely that Ascension is dormant rather than extinct, given the 1961 eruption at Tristan da Cuhna which, like Ascension, is located on the mid-Atlantic ridge. But don't panic !! On volcanic islands eruptions are usually preceded by minor earth tremors.

Flora and Fauna

Early accounts of the island refer to the verdant upper slopes of Green Mountain which was probably indigenous vegetation. However there are now many introductions that have "escaped" to the wild including Psidium(Guaver) which was introduced prior to 1859, but is now widespread.
In some parts of the island there are little groups of Norfolk pines, which are said to have been planted as a stand by supply of wood to replace broken masts of sailing ships. Sometime during the sixties or seventies someone introduced a Mexican thorn bush (Mesquite), possibly for their garden. This is now out of control in the wild and threatens to take over big areas of the island. A beetle is to be introduced which eats the Mesquite seeds, and the existing trees will be controlled by cutting down etc.

© Frans Horbach 2006 - 2012