Just Room Enough – the Smallest Inhabited Island on Earth
It is first necessary to define an island, as the definition of “the world’s smallest island” is still up for debate.
Islands are land masses encircled by water. They range in size and shape from tiny islets to massive landmasses like Australia.
Islands are found all over the world, from the Arctic to the Antarctic, despite the fact that they are frequently connected to tropical locations.
There is some confusion surrounding the definition of an island. A naturally formed piece of land that is surrounded by water and above the water at high tide is called an island, according to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.
China’s and Dubai’s artificial islands do not fall under this definition.
Islands can be categorized according to a number of factors, including geography, size, and location. For example, islands that have a land area of less than 1,000 square kilometers are commonly classified as small islands.
The geology of islands can also differ greatly; some are formed by volcanic activity, while others are formed by tectonic uplift or sedimentation.
One distinctive feature of islands is that endemic species—species that are unique to Earth—frequently call them home.
This is because species find it challenging to migrate to or from islands due to their isolation from larger landmasses.
Island ecosystems can therefore be extremely varied and delicate.
Situated between the United States and Canada, on the Saint Lawrence River, off the coast of Alexandria Bay (New York), is Just Room Enough Island, also referred to as Hub Island.
This island is extremely small, as its name implies; it is only 12 meters long and 3.6 meters wide.
Built in the 1950s, it is home to just one house despite its large size.
At high tide, the waves can come up to the front door of the house because it is so close to the water!
True to its name, the world’s smallest island ‘Just Room Enough’ means ‘just large enough’ and can only hold a few people and a single tree. This island is currently only about 310 square meters in size (it was previously 360 square meters) and 12 meters long.
This is also why it’s known as the world’s smallest inhabited island.
In 1950, a wealthy family named Sizeland purchased the island with the intention of turning it into a resort and then building houses and planting trees on all of the vacant land. They did not, however, expect the island to become an internationally recognized tourist destination.
According to convention, land floating on a large body of water is considered an island in the Thousand Islands archipelago if it meets the year-round requirement of being above water and having at least one living tree. However, when the last tree on the island died, the Sizeland family had to take advantage of the open space to plant another tree.
The Sizeland family’s desire for a private house with open space to relax on weekends appears to be unrealistic. The house and island quickly became popular tourist destinations, and they were recognized in the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s smallest island with life.
According to the Washington Post, visitors to the island must exercise extreme caution because ‘if you take one step wrong, you will find yourself swimming’.
Previously, the smallest island in the world was the Scilly Islands in the United Kingdom, home to the Bishop Rock lighthouse. However, Bishop Rock was renovated in 1982 and now has an automatic lighting system, eliminating the need for a guard.
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