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Pulau Yos Sudarso

Pulau Yos Sudarso

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Leaf shaped Pulau Yos Sudarso Island

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Pulau Yos Sudarso Island is the large, leaf-shaped island in the lower left part of the image area. These images from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) were captured by the instrument's nadir camera on July 31, 2002, and show a natural-color (top) and false-color (bottom) view of a 291 kilometer x 158 kilometer area. The false-color image includes data from the camera's near-infrared band, and accentuates the appearance of vegetation. North is toward the top.






Some interesting facts about Pulau Yos Sudarso Island are:

  • The island is known by at least three different names. Pulau Kimaam, Pulau Dolok, Pulau Yos Sudarso, and Frederik Hendrik Island are all names used to refer to this island, which is part of the Indonesian province of West Papua (also known as Irian Jaya).
  • At least one language spoken on the island is not in common usage anywhere else. Linguists have identified over 500 languages spoken within the "Trans-New Guinea" region (comprising West Papua and Papua New Guinea). At least two languages within this group, Ndom and Riantana, are only used by people living on the island.
  • Jayapura, the capital city of West Papua, is located more than 500 kilometers from the northern boundary of the image area.
  • Although there are many well-developed reefs in the waters of West Papua, none are found along the southeastern coast. Large amounts of sediment (apparent in the image around the entire coastline) prohibit reef development in this region.
  • Sea level fluctuations cause major displacements in the horizontal location of coastlines in this region. The Arafura Sea surrounding the island is a shallow (50 to 80 meters) continental shelf, and sea levels during the peak of the last ice age (about 20,000 years ago), were more than 100 meters lower than today.
  • Among the bats known to live on the island are the Lesser tube-nosed fruit bat and Broad-striped tube-nosed fruit bat.
  • The region within which the island is situated harbors a freshwater turtle that is exceptional in its possession of an anatomical characteristic otherwise typical of marine turtles. The pig-nosed turtle found in northern Australia and southern Papua, possesses flippers resembling those of marine turtles.
  • Insect control has been tested as a means of combatting an invasive aquatic weed that threatens wetland habitats in the island's vicinity. Many of the wetland areas in this region are choked with Water Hyacinth. In November 2000, a course was conducted on the breeding and use of insect biocontrol agents (weevil Neochetina) of Water Hyacinth infestations.
  • The island's coastline includes some of the largest mangrove forests in the world, and several types of Avicennia mangroves can be found at the Pulau Kimaam Wildlife Reserve.

MISR was built and is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA, for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The Terra spacecraft is managed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD. The MISR data were obtained from the NASA Langley Research Center Atmospheric Science Data Center in Hampton, VA.

Image credit: NASA/GSFC/LaRC/JPL, MISR Team.

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