Kingman Reef

Kingman Reef /ˈkɪŋmən/ is a largely submerged, uninhabited triangular-shaped reef, 9.5 nautical miles (18 kilometers) east-west and 5 nmi (9 km) north-south,[2] located in the North Pacific Ocean, roughly halfway between the Hawaiian Islands and American Samoa at 6°23′N 162°25′W / 6.383°N 162.417°W.[3][4] It is the northernmost of the Northern Line Islands and lies 36 nautical miles (67 km) northwest of the next closest island (Palmyra Atoll), and 930 nautical miles (1,720 km) south of Honolulu.[3]

The reef encloses a lagoon up to 270 feet (82 m) deep in its western part.[2] The total area within the outer rim of the reef is 29 sq mi (75 km2). There are two small strips of dry land composed of coral rubble and giant clamshells on the eastern rim with areas of 2 and 1 acre (8,100 and 4,000 m2)[5] having a coastline of 2 miles (3 km).[3] The highest point on the reef is less than 5 feet (1.5 m) above sea level,[5] which is wetted or awash most of the time, making Kingman Reef a maritime hazard. It has no natural resources and supports no economic activity.[3]

Kingman Reef
Kingman Reef NWR. Photo credit- Susan White-USFWS (12198955306)
Southeast part of Kingman Reef, looking north
Kingman Reef is located in Oceania
Kingman Reef
Kingman Reef
Location in Oceania
Coordinates6°23′N 162°25′W / 6.383°N 162.417°WCoordinates: 6°23′N 162°25′W / 6.383°N 162.417°W
Area76 km2 (29 sq mi)[1]
Length18 km (11.2 mi)
Width9 km (5.6 mi)
Orthographic projection over Kingman Reef
Orthographic projection over Kingman Reef
Kingman Reef - 2014-02-18 - Landsat 8 - 15m
NASA Landsat 8 true-color photo of Kingman Reef

Political status

Kingman Reef has the status of an unincorporated territory of the United States, administered from Washington, D.C. by the U.S. Department of Interior. The atoll is closed to the public. For statistical purposes, Kingman Reef is grouped as part of the United States Minor Outlying Islands. In January 2009, Kingman Reef was designated a marine national monument.

The pre-20th century names Danger Reef, Caldew Reef, Maria Shoal and Crane Shoal refer to this atoll, which by then was entirely submerged at high tide. Thomas Hale Streets described its state in the 1870s, when it had:

... hardly, as yet, assumed the distinctive features of an island. It is entirely under water at high tide, and but a few coral heads project here and there above the surface at low water. In the course of time, however, it will undoubtedly be added to the [northern Line Islands].[6]

Unofficial flag of Kingman reef
Unofficial Flag of Kingman Reef.


Kingman Reef was discovered by the American Captain Edmund Fanning of the ship Betsey on June 14, 1798. Captain W. E. Kingman (whose name the island bears) described it on November 29, 1853. Kingman Reef was claimed in 1860 by the United States Guano Company, under the name "Danger Reef".[7] This claim was made under by the Guano Islands Act of 1856 although there is no evidence that guano existed or was ever mined on Kingman Reef.[8]

Lorrin A. Thurston formally annexed Kingman to the United States on May 10, 1922, by reading this declaration on shore:

Be it known to all people: That on the tenth of May, A.D. 1922, the undersigned agent of the Island of Palmyra Copra Co., Ltd., landed from the motorship Palmyra doth, on this tenth day of May, A.D. 1922, take formal possession of this island, called Kingman Reef, situated in longitude 162 degrees 18' west and 6 degrees 23' north, on behalf of the United States of America and claim the same for said company.

On December 29, 1934, the US Navy assumed jurisdiction over Kingman Reef.[9] The lagoon was used in 1937 and 1938 as a halfway station between Hawai'i and American Samoa by Pan American Airways flying boats (Sikorsky S-42B).[10] Pan Am wanted to expand flights into the Pacific and include Australia and New Zealand to their "Clipper" air routes. In 1935 it was decided that the lagoon at Kingman Reef was suitable for overnight stops en route from the U.S. to New Zealand via Samoa. Kingman Reef became the stopover to and from Pago Pago, American Samoa, located 1,600 miles (2,600 km) further south. A supply ship, the North Wind, was stationed at Kingman Reef to provide fuel, lodging, and meals. The S42B Pan American Clipper II, piloted by Captain Edwin Musick, landed at Kingman on its first flight on March 23, 1937. Several successful flights followed, but the flight on January 11, 1938 ended in tragedy. Shortly after the early morning take off from Pago Pago, bound for New Zealand, the Clipper exploded. The right outboard engine had developed an oil leak and the plane burst into flames while dumping fuel; there were no survivors. As a result of the tragedy, Pan Am ended flights to New Zealand via Kingman Reef and Pago Pago. A new route was established in July 1940 by way of Canton Island and New Caledonia.

On February 14, 1941, President Franklin Roosevelt issued Executive Order 8682 to create naval defenses areas in the central Pacific territories. The proclamation established "Kingman Reef Naval Defensive Sea Area" which encompassed the territorial waters between the extreme high-water marks and the three-mile marine boundaries surrounding the atoll. "Kingman Naval Airspace Reservation" was also established to restrict access to the airspace over the naval defense sea area. Only U.S. government ships and aircraft were permitted to enter the naval defense areas at Kingman Reef unless authorized by the Secretary of the Navy.


Kingman Reef Oct 2003
Dry strip of land on Kingman Reef with a coconut palm seedling; October 2003

Kingman Reef supports a vast variety of marine life. Giant clams are abundant in the shallows, and there are approximately 38 genera and 130 species of stony corals present on the reef. This is more than three times the species diversity of corals found in the main Hawaiian Islands. The ecosystem of the reef and its subsequent food chain are known for the distinct quality of being primarily predator-based. Sharks comprised 74% of the top predator biomass (329 g m-2) at Kingman Reef and 57% at Palmyra Atoll (97 g m-2), low shark numbers have been observed at Tabuaeran and Kiritimati.[11] The percentage of the total fish biomass on the reef is made up of 85% apex predators, creating a high level of competition for food and nutrients among local organisms — particularly sharks, jacks, and other carnivores. The threatened green sea turtles that frequent nearby Palmyra Atoll travel to Kingman Reef to forage and bask on the coral rubble spits at low tide.

However, above sea level, the reef is usually barren of macroorganisms. Mainly constructed of dead and dried coral skeletons, providing only calcite as a source of nutrients, the small and narrow strips of dry land are only habitable by a handful of species for short periods of time. Most flora which begin to grow above water — primarily coconut palms — die out quickly due to the fierce tides and lack of resources necessary to sustain plant life.

National Wildlife Refuge

On September 1, 2000, the Navy relinquished its control over Kingman Reef to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. On January 18, 2001 Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt created the Kingman Reef National Wildlife Refuge during his final days in office with Secretary's Order 3223. It is composed of the emergent coral rubble spits and all waters out to 12 nautical miles (22 km). While there are only 3 acres (0.012 km2) of land, 483,754 acres (1,957.68 km2) of water area is included in the Refuge.[12] Along with six other islands, the reef was administered as part of the Pacific Remote Islands National Wildlife Refuge Complex. In January 2009, that entity was upgraded to the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument by President George W. Bush.[13]

Amateur radio expeditions

Since the early 1940s, Kingman Reef has had very little human contact, though amateur radio operators from around the world have occasionally visited the reef to put it "on the air" in what is known as a DX-pedition. In 1974, a group of amateurs using the callsign KP6KR sailed to the reef and set up a temporary radio station and antenna. Other groups visited the island in subsequent years, including 1977, 1980, 1981, 1988 and 1993.

Most recently, a group of 15 amateur radio operators from the Palmyra DX Group visited the reef in October 2000. Using the FCC-issued special event callsign K5K, the group made more than 80,000 individual contacts with amateurs around the world over a period of 10 days.[14]

Between November 15, 1945, and March 28, 2016, Kingman Reef was considered a discrete entity for the purpose of earning awards such as the DX Century Club. A video shot by amateur radio operators traveling to the K5P DX-pedition on Palmyra in January 2016 appears to show Kingman Reef mostly awash, raising questions as to whether a future activation of Kingman Reef would be possible.[15]

On March 28, 2016, the ARRL DXCC desk deleted Kingman Reef from the list of collectable entities[16] effective March 29, 2016, and deeming Kingman a part of the Palmyra and Jarvis entity due to proximity of the islands and common administration of the islands by the Fish and Wildlife Service.

See also


  1. ^ Including lagoon. Land area 3 acres (0.012 km2).
  2. ^ a b Resture, Jane (December 3, 2012). "Kingman Reef". Jane's Oceana. Retrieved August 14, 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d United States Pacific Island Wildlife Refuges - CIA World Factbook Last updated April 7, 2010.
  4. ^ Coordinates are near the dry land spits.
  5. ^ a b "Kingman Reef National Wildlife Refuge". U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. March 28, 2016. Retrieved August 14, 2017.
  6. ^ Streets, Thomas H. (1877): "Some Account of the Natural History of the Fanning Group of Islands". American Naturalist 11(2): 65–72. p.65.
  7. ^ Bryan, E.H. Jr. (1941): American Polynesia and the Hawaiian Chain (1st ed.). Tongg Puplishing Company, Honolulu, Hawaii. p.154.
  8. ^ "GAO/OGC-98-5 - U.S. Insular Areas: Application of the U.S. Constitution". U.S. Government Printing Office. November 7, 1997. Retrieved March 23, 2013.
  9. ^ "Kingman Reef". Office of Insular Affairs, Department of the Interior. Retrieved August 14, 2017.
  10. ^ "Pan Am Clipper Flying Boats". HM Magazine. Retrieved August 14, 2017.
  11. ^ Stuart A. Sandin; et al. (February 27, 2008). "Baselines and Degradation of Coral Reefs in the Northern Line Islands". 3 (2) PLoS ONE. Retrieved January 27, 2017.
  12. ^ White, Susan (March 30, 2011). "Welcome to Kingman Reef National Wildlife Refuge". U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Retrieved March 4, 2012.
  13. ^ Bush, George W. (January 6, 2009). "Establishment of the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument: A Proclamation by the President of the United States of America". White House. Retrieved March 4, 2012.
  14. ^ N1DG (March 11, 2001). "The Kingman Reef/Palmyra DX Group proudly presents Kingman Reef 2000". Retrieved August 14, 2017.
  15. ^ Hotzfeld, Valerie NV9L (February 7, 2016). "K5P Jet Footage". Google. Retrieved August 14, 2017.
  16. ^ "Kingman Reef (KH5) Deleted from DXCC List". Amateur Radio Relay League. March 28, 2016. Retrieved August 14, 2017.

External links

Wikimedia Atlas of Kingman Reef

Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act

The Federal Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act (also known as the Cigarette Act) is a comprehensive act designed to provide a set of national standards for cigarette packaging. It was amended by the Public Health Cigarette Smoking Act of 1969, Comprehensive Smoking Education Act of 1986, and the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009. It came in conflict with California Proposition 65.

Gallery of flags of dependent territories

This overview contains the flags of dependent territories and other areas of special sovereignty.

Insular area

An insular area of the United States is a U.S. territory that is neither a part of one of the 50 states nor of a Federal district. Article IV, Section 3, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution grants to United States Congress the responsibility of overseeing these territories, of which there are currently 14—three in the Caribbean Sea and 11 in the Pacific Ocean. These territories are classified by whether they are incorporated (by Congress extending the full body of the Constitution to the territory as it applies to the several states) and whether they have an organized territorial government established by the U.S. Congress through an Organic Act. All territories but one are unincorporated, and all but four are considered to be unorganized. Five U.S. territories have a permanent, nonmilitary population. Each of them has a civilian government, a constitution, and enjoys some degree of local political autonomy.


KQ may refer to:

Kenya Airways (IATA airline designator)

Kingman Reef (FIPS PUB 10-4 territory code)

The King of Queens, a sitcom

King's Quest, a video game series by Sierra Entertainment

Line Islands

The Line Islands, Teraina Islands or Equatorial Islands, is a chain of atolls (with partially or fully enclosed lagoons) and coral islands (with a surrounding reef). Kingman Reef is largely submerged and Filippo Reef is shown on some maps, although its existence is doubted. The islands were formed by volcanic activity and are located in the central Pacific Ocean, south of the Hawaiian Islands. The 11 islands stretch for 2,350 kilometres (1,460 miles) in a northwest–southeast direction, making it one of the longest island chains of the world. Eight of the islands form part of Kiribati, while the remaining three (Kingman Reef, Palmyra Island and Jarvis Island) are United States territories grouped with the United States Minor Outlying Islands. Only Kiritimati and Tabuaeran atolls and Teraina Island have a permanent population.

The International Date Line passes through the Line Islands. The Line Islands that are part of Kiribati are in the world's farthest forward time zone, UTC+14:00. The time of day is the same as in the U.S. state of Hawaiʻi, but the date is one day ahead. The time is 1 day and 2 hours ahead of some other islands in Oceania like Baker Island, which uses UTC−12:00.

List of butterflies of Kiribati

This is a list of butterflies of Kiribati. This list includes species found on the US islands Baker Island, Howland Island, Jarvis Island and Kingman Reef.

List of uninhabited regions

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Countries with disputed statusAbkhazia - China (Republic)/Taiwan - Kosovo - Nagorno-Karabakh - Northern Cyprus - Palestine - Somaliland - South Ossetia - Tamil Eelam - Transnistria - Western Sahara

Dependencies and other overseas territoriesAkrotiri and Dhekelia - Åland- American Samoa- Anguilla - Aruba - Ascension Island - Ashmore and Cartier Islands - Baker Island- Bermuda - Bouvet Island - British Indian Ocean Territory - British Virgin Islands - Cayman Islands - Christmas Island - Clipperton Island - Cocos (Keeling) Islands - Cook Islands - Coral Sea Islands - Falkland Islands - Faroe Islands - French Guiana - French Polynesia - French Southern and Antarctic Lands - Gibraltar - Greenland - Guadeloupe - Guam - Guantanamo Bay - Guernsey - Heard Island and McDonald Islands - Hong Kong - Howland Island - Isle of Man - Jan Mayen - Jarvis Island - Jersey - Johnston Atoll - Kingman Reef - Macau - Martinique - Mayotte - Midway Atoll - Montserrat - Navassa Island - Netherlands Antilles - New Caledonia - Niue - Norfolk Island - Northern Mariana Islands - Palmyra Atoll - Pitcairn Islands - Puerto Rico - Réunion - Saint Helena - Saint-Barthélemy - Saint Martin (French) - Saint-Pierre and Miquelon - South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands - Svalbard - Tokelau - Tristan da Cunha - Turks and Caicos Islands - United States Virgin Islands - Wake Island - Wallis and Futuna

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Old atlasStielers Handatlas 1891

Outline of Oceania

The following outline is provided as an overview and topical guide to Oceania.

Oceania is a geographical, and geopolitical, region consisting of numerous lands—mostly islands in the Pacific Ocean and vicinity. The term is also sometimes used to denote a continent comprising Australia and proximate Pacific islands.The boundaries of Oceania are defined in a number of ways. Most definitions include parts of Australasia such as Australia, New Zealand, and New Guinea, and parts of Maritime Southeast Asia. Ethnologically, the islands of Oceania are divided into the subregions of Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia.

Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument

The Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument is a group of unorganized, mostly unincorporated United States Pacific Island territories managed by the Fish and Wildlife Service of the United States Department of the Interior and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the United States Department of Commerce. These remote refuges are "the most widespread collection of marine- and terrestrial-life protected areas on the planet under a single country's jurisdiction". They protect many endemic species including corals, fish, shellfish, marine mammals, seabirds, water birds, land birds, insects, and vegetation not found elsewhere.

Palmyra Atoll

Palmyra Atoll () is one of the Northern Line Islands (southeast of Kingman Reef and north of Kiribati Line Islands), located almost due south of the Hawaiian Islands, roughly one-third of the way between Hawaii and American Samoa. The nearest continent is almost 3,355 miles (5,399 kilometers) to the northeast. The atoll is 4.6 sq mi (12 km2), and it is located in the equatorial Northern Pacific Ocean. Its 9 mi (14 km) of coastline has one anchorage known as West Lagoon.

Palmyra Atoll is an unoccupied equatorial Northern Pacific atoll administered as an unorganized incorporated territory, the only one of its kind, by the United States federal government. The 4.6-square-mile (12 km2) territory hosts a variable temporary population of 4–25 "non-occupants", namely staff and scientists employed by various departments of the U.S. government and by The Nature Conservancy, as well as a rotating mix of Palmyra Atoll Research Consortium scholars pursuing research. Portions of the atoll are administered by the Department of the Interior's Office of Insular Affairs. Palmyra Atoll is one of the islands in the U.S. Minor Outlying Islands.

Samoa Time Zone

The Samoa Time Zone observes standard time by subtracting eleven hours from Coordinated Universal Time (UTC-11). The clock time in this zone is based on the mean solar time of the 165th meridian west of the Greenwich Observatory.

The zone includes the U.S. territory of American Samoa, as well as the Midway Islands and the uninhabited islands of Jarvis, Palmyra, and Kingman Reef. It also includes the country of Niue.

The zone is one hour behind Hawaii-Aleutian Time Zone and one hour ahead of the Howland and Baker islands, and 23 hours behind Wake Island Time Zone.

The nation of Samoa also observed the same time as the Samoa Time Zone until it moved across the International Date Line at the end of 29 December 2011; it is now 24 hours (25 hours in southern hemisphere summer) ahead of American Samoa.

Scouting in Hawaii

Scouting in Hawaii began in the 1900s. It serves thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live.

Solar eclipse of January 4, 1992

An annular solar eclipse occurred on January 4–5, 1992. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between Earth and the Sun, thereby totally or partly obscuring the image of the Sun for a viewer on Earth. An annular solar eclipse occurs when the Moon's apparent diameter is smaller than the Sun's, blocking most of the Sun's light and causing the Sun to look like an annulus (ring). An annular eclipse appears as a partial eclipse over a region of the Earth thousands of kilometres wide. Annularity was visible in the Federal States of Micronesia, Nauru, Kiribati, Baker Island, Palmyra Atoll, Kingman Reef, and southwestern California, including the southwestern part of Los Angeles.

The duration of annularity at maximum eclipse (closest to but slightly shorter than the longest duration) was 11 minutes, 40.9 seconds in the Pacific. It was the longest annular solar eclipse until January 2, 3062, but the solar eclipse of December 24, 1973 lasted longer.

South Pacific (TV series)

South Pacific (Wild Pacific in the US) is a British nature documentary series from the BBC Natural History Unit, which began airing on BBC Two on 10 May 2009. The six-part series surveys the natural history of the islands of the South Pacific region, including many of the coral atolls and New Zealand. It was filmed entirely in high-definition. South Pacific was co-produced by the Discovery Channel and the series producer was Huw Cordey. It is narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch. Filming took place over 18 months in a variety of remote locations around the Pacific including: Anuta (Solomon Islands), Banks Islands, French Frigate Shoals, Papua New Guinea, Palmyra, Kingman Reef, Tuvalu, Palau, Caroline Islands, Tuamotus and Tanna Island in Vanuatu.

On 6 May 2009, BBC Worldwide released a short clip of big wave surfer Dylan Longbottom surfing in slow motion, high-definition footage as a preview of the series, attracting extremely positive reactions on the video sharing website YouTube.The series was released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc on 15 June 2009. At the end of each fifty-minute episode, a ten-minute featurette takes a behind-the-scenes look at the challenges of filming the series.

The series was released by Discovery International in the USA under the title Wild Pacific, with narration provided by Mike Rowe.

The series forms part of the Natural History Unit's "Continents" strand. It was preceded by Wild China in 2008 and followed by Madagascar in 2011.

Territories of the United States

Territories of the United States are sub-national administrative divisions overseen by the federal government. They differ from U.S. states and Native American tribes, which have limited sovereignty. The territories are classified by incorporation and whether they have an "organized" government through an organic act passed by Congress.The U.S. currently has sixteen territories in the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean. Five (American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands) are permanently-inhabited, unincorporated territories; the other nine are small islands, atolls and reefs with no native (or permanent) population. Of the eleven, only one is classified as an incorporated territory. Two territories (Bajo Nuevo Bank and Serranilla Bank) are defacto administered by Colombia. Territories were created to administer newly-acquired land, and most eventually attained statehood. Others, such as the Philippines, Micronesia, the Marshall Islands and Palau, later became independent.

Many organized incorporated territories of the United States existed from 1789 to 1959. The first were the Northwest and Southwest territories, and the last were the Alaska and Hawaii Territories. Thirty-one territories (or parts of territories) became states. In the process, some less-developed or -populous areas of a territory were orphaned from it after a statehood referendum. When a portion of the Missouri Territory became the state of Missouri, the remainder of the territory (the present-day states of Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota and North Dakota, most of Kansas, Wyoming, and Montana, and parts of Colorado and Minnesota) became an unorganized territory.Territorial telecommunications and other infrastructure is generally inferior to that of the U.S. mainland, and American Samoa's Internet speed was found to be slower than several Eastern European countries. Poverty rates are higher in the territories than in the states.

United States District Court for the District of Hawaii

The United States District Court for the District of Hawaii (in case citations, D. Haw.) is the principal trial court of the United States Federal Court System in the state of Hawaii. The court's territorial jurisdiction encompasses the state of Hawaii and the territories of Midway Atoll, Wake Island, Johnston Atoll, Kingman Reef, Palmyra Atoll, Baker Island, Howland Island, and Jarvis Island. It is located at the Prince Kuhio Federal Building in downtown Honolulu, fronting the Aloha Tower and Honolulu Harbor. The court hears both civil and criminal cases as a court of law and equity. A branch of the district court is the United States Bankruptcy Court which also has chambers in the federal building. The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has appellate jurisdiction over cases coming out of the District of Hawaii (except for patent claims and claims against the U.S. government under the Tucker Act, which are appealed to the Federal Circuit). The United States Attorney for the District of Hawaii represents the United States in all civil and criminal cases within her district. The current United States Attorney is Kenji M. Price since January 5, 2018.

United States Minor Outlying Islands

The United States Minor Outlying Islands are a statistical designation defined by the International Organization for Standardization's ISO 3166-1 code. The entry code is ISO 3166-2:UM. The minor outlying islands and groups of islands consist of eight United States insular areas in the Pacific Ocean (Baker Island, Howland Island, Jarvis Island, Johnston Atoll, Kingman Reef, Midway Atoll, Palmyra Atoll, and Wake Island) and one in the Caribbean Sea (Navassa Island).

The United States has a related territorial dispute with Colombia over administration of the Bajo Nuevo Bank and Serranilla Bank. These islands are not included in the ISO designation.

United States Miscellaneous Pacific Islands

The United States Miscellaneous Pacific Islands is an obsolete term used to collectively describe Baker Island, Howland Island, Jarvis Island, Kingman Reef, and Palmyra Atoll, all of them territories controlled by the United States by the Guano Islands Act in the Pacific Ocean.

The islands were given the ISO country codes of PU (alpha-2), PUS (alpha-3), and 849 (numeric) before 1986 (now PUUM), and the FIPS country code of IQ before 1981. For ISO purposes, the islands are now defined as part of the United States Minor Outlying Islands, together with Johnston Atoll, Midway Atoll, Navassa Island, and Wake Island, while each island is now given a separate FIPS code.

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