What happened to the Easter Islanders?

Researchers from the University of Auckland have published new research, calling into doubt established theories on what happened to the prehistoric population of Easter Island. In a story which echoes the moral of St Matthew Island, it now appears that the demise of the native Rapa Nui population was due to the ecological limitations of the small island. This challenges previous theories that the islanders were wiped out by an environmental disaster, or solely through the introduction of new diseases brought over by European explorers in the early 18th century. To learn more, read the stories on the Huffington Post and NBC. Or, to access the full study, click on the image below.

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Photograph by Alanbritom - Amanecer Moai Rano Raraku. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.