Easter Island

The Misteries Reveled

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What led to the rapid decline in the population on Easter Island?

A little background on Easter Island...

Easter Island is a 63 square mile island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean (Krulwich 2013). It has baffled many scientist on how the people developed without any influence from the outside world. Also, the group who first discovered Easter Island is said to be a family from Polynisia, a nerby group of Islands (Krulwich 2013). These people also relied on farming a lot (Heyerdalh 2016). The first European explorer was Jacob Roggeveen, a Dutch native, he visited for only a day in 1722 (Heyerdahl 2016). This day was Easter day. That is why it's called Easter Island. Lastly, he noted there were two groups of people, some with long ears, and some with short ears as depicted in this picture (Heyerdahl 2016).

Modern day Infomation.

  • 1950's Moai excavated and photographed for the first time ever (Easter Island: stones history. Easter Island)

  • 1986 experiment done to show 15 men could have hauled the Moai with ropes (Heyerdahl 2016)

  • 1987 Even earlier statues are found on Easter Island but are disformed (Heyerdahl 2016)


  • The natives were farmers and could have had their crops ruined
  • Too many people on the island
  • Too few trees/ resources
  • All the trees die so no animals to hunt
  • Rats and deforestation add up

What I think...

After doing all my reaserch I think that the rats and deforestation added up and led to the decrease in the population. One thing the first English explorer said is that there was not many trees (Dangerfield 2007). Also one scorce said Polynesian rats (in picture) can multiply every 47 days (Krulwich 2016). Theses factors together could have drasticly changed the population. This is how I found the answer to my reaserch question.

The rats and deforestation add up and make it harder to live.

Works cited

Dangerfield, Whitney. "History, Travel, Arts, Science, People, Places | Smithsonian." History, Travel, Arts, Science, People, Places | Smithsonian. Smithsonian, 31 Mar. 2007. Web. 10 May 2016. <http://www.smithsonianmag.com/people-places/the-mystery-of-easter-island-151285298/>.

"Easter Island: Stones, History." Easter Island: Stones, History. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2016. <http://www.lost-civilizations.net/easter-island-stones-history.html>.

Heyerdahls, Thor. "Easter Island." Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, 14 Apr. 2016. Web. 10 May 2016. <http://www.britannica.com/place/Easter-Island#>.

Krulwich, Robert. "What Happened On Easter Island - A New (Even Scarier) Scenario." NPR. NPR, 10 Dec. 2013. Web. 10 May 2016. <http://www.npr.org/sections/krulwich/2013/12/09/249728994/what-happened-on-easter-island-a-new-even-scarier-scenario>.

By Sean Little