Juan de Nova Island

Juan de Nova Island hwän də nō´və [key], 1.7 sq mi (4.4 sq km), in the Mozambique Channel, Indian Ocean, between Madagascar and Mozambique. A possession of France administered by a high commissioner in Réunion, it is part of the Scattered Islands district within the French Southern and Antarctic Lands. Low and flat, the island is surrounded by coral reefs. Most of it consists of heavily forested areas that form a wildlife sanctuary. There is no indigenous population, but the island is the site of a small French military garrison and a weather station. There are abundant guano deposits. Named for a 15th-century Spanish explorer, Juan de Nova has been a French possession since 1897. It is also claimed by Madagascar.

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