Virtual Tours: Ascension Island
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Features of Other Interest, including Cultural

Sir Joseph Hooker, one of Britain’s leading botanists of the 19th century, inspired the planting of pastures, forests and shrub-lands and introduced more than 220 plants species from around the globe. This was done with the aim of reducing erosion, increasing water capture by plants from the mist on Green Mountain, improving the soil and increasing the water supply. The latter was particularly important for supplying drinking water to the ships that called in. This large scale transformation has left partly man-made cloud forest and dense vegetation covering Green Mountain. However, Green Mountain was never completely barren. Even when sailors first arrived, a few native/endemic grass and fern species were present on the windward side of the mountain where a small amount of moisture collected. More information on the topic can be found here. While many have viewed Hooker’s work as a great ecological experiment, others have perceived it as a prime example of a previously immaculate island habitat degraded by human-introduced invasive species. The AIG Conservation Department is working to create a stable, self-sustainaing mixture of exotic and indigenous species.  

Man-made cloud forest on Green Mountain.

© Ascension Island Government Conservation Department
(Features of Other Interest, including Cultural, 3 of 10 - Slide ref. 622)