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Seashore of Lord Howe Island, Australia

Some 370 miles east of the Australian mainland lies Lord Howe Island. Uninhabited when the British first came upon it in 1788, the Island served for nearly a century as a port for whalers. As that industry declined, trade in the native kentia palm boomed, along with regular visits from scientific expeditions.  The Island is now regarded as a prime biodiversity hot spot, with many of its plant and animal species found nowhere else on Earth. With just a few hundred inhabitants, much of the Island is protected as a natural preserve and marine park. In 1982 the entire Lore Howe Island Group was designated a UNESCO world Heritage Site.

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