Hunter Island Volcano | John Seach


Tafea Province, Vanuatu

22.40 S, 172.09 E
summit elevation 297 m

Hunter Island is located at the south-eastern tip of the Quaternary volcanic chain of the New Hebrides island arc. The island is situated halfway between an intraoceanic collision zone (Loyalty Islands Ridge/New Hebrides arc) and an active expanding ridge (North Fiji Basin Ridge).

Hunter Island contain an asymmetrical shape. The southern composite cone, centered around an extinct crater, differs from the northwestern part of the island, where 100 m high cliffs enclose an explosion crater. The summit of Hunter
volcano is formed by a Peléean-type dome.

The most recent eruptions occurred at the northern tip of the island. The area currently shows fumarilic activity.

Hunter Island Volcano is located in southern Vanuatu.  It was administered by the New Hebrides Condominium and was not given away at Independence. The people of Aneityum Island consider it part of their custom ownership.

Indigenous leaders of New Caledonia verbally acknowledged in February 2009 that Hunter Island belongs to Vanuatu. 

2021 Earthquake
On 3 Feb 2021 a magnitude 5.7 earthquake occurred 18 km south of the island with a focus depth of 10 km.

2012 Earthquake
A magnitude 6.0 earthquake hit between two remote oceanic volcanoes in southern Vanuatu of 23rd October 2012. The epicentre was located 34 kilometres east of Matthew Island volcano, and 40 kilometres northwest of Hunter Island volcano. The earthquake focus was at a depth of 127 kilometres.

Further reading
Maillet, P., Monzier, M. and Lefevre, C., 1986. Petrology of Matthew and Hunter volcanoes, south New Hebrides island arc (southwest Pacific). Journal of volcanology and geothermal research30(1-2), pp.1-27.

Mosses, M., 2019. Revisiting the Matthew and Hunter Islands Dispute in Light of the Recent Chagos Advisory Opinion and Some Other Relevant Cases: An Evaluation of Vanuatu’s Claims relating to the Right to Self-Determination, Territorial Integrity, Unlawful Occupation and State Responsibility Under International Law. Netherlands International Law Review66(3), pp.475-506.

Hunter Island Volcano Eruptions

1903, 1895, 1892?, 1841, 1835, 1797?