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  • Writer's picturePaul



The Pitcairn Islands are a group of four volcanic islands in the southern Pacific Ocean. They’re some of the smallest, most isolated, and most sparsely populated landmasses on the planet: home to just 54 people (mostly all descendants of the crew of the HMS Bounty), the Pitcairn group covers just 18 square miles and lies some 1,300 miles from its nearest Oceanic neighbour, Tahiti, and more than 3,000 miles east of New Zealand.

It is also, according to the CIA World Fact Book, the only populated state in the world whose entire population identify as Seventh-Day Adventists, and is the only place on Earth were you can hear a language called Pitkern—a mixture of 18th century English and Polynesian Tahitian—spoken as a mother tongue.

It is also one of just three territories worldwide (alongside the equally tiny Vatican City and the Cocos Islands) with a 0% birth rate and population growth. In other words, the population is so tiny, and changes to it are so few and far between, that taken as an annual average the population of Pitcairn remains statistically perfectly stable.

In fact, so stable is the population of Pitcairn that when a child was born there in 2003, it was the first time a birth had been registered there in a staggering 17 years. Happily, there wasn’t quite such a long wait for the next one: another birth was registered 4 years later in 2007.

So, average out those 2 births every 21 years, and, yeah—a 0% birth rate sounds about right...

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