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10 (almost) deserted islands

By: Josh Lew on April 23, 2018, 10:11 a.m.
Surtsey is a volcanic island off the southern coast of Iceland.

Photo: CanonS2/Wikimedia Commons

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The Icelandic island of Surtsey doesn't have a long history because it simply didn't exist before the 1960s. The island was formed by an underwater volcanic eruption, so it's of special interest to scientists who want to witness the formation of the island's ecosystem firsthand. Mosses and fungi were the first living things that grew in the volcanic soil, with a number of migrating birds, plants and even insects now thriving on this young land mass. Because of its scientific value, Surtsey is heavily protected and remains off-limits to tourists, but there are regular sightseeing flights over the island.