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Niijima Island: Japanese volcanic island swallows another (+VIDEO)

A Japanese island ate another nearby island and the incredible event has geologists and scientists alike in amazement. As documented by NASA's Earth Observatory, Niijima island has now joined a nearby island that was formed from a volcano which last erupted 40 years ago, CNN reported on April 7.

In November 2013, a submarine volcano located in the western Pacific Ocean expelled enough material to rise above the water surface. The phenomenon has given rise to a new volcanic island called Niijima.

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At first, scientists did not know whether the island would remain or disappear as quickly as it happened. Today, it seems as though Niijima is going to settle permanently. During its appearance, the island of Niijima was located just 500 meters from the island of Nishino-Shima, its nearest neighbor volcano which last erupted in 1974. Now, these two islands are no longer one.

They started to merge in December and thanks to the high activity of the volcano Niijima, this association is still expanding. A new image captured by the NASA's satellite Landast-8 shows that on March 30, Niijima now encompasses virtually all of Nishino-Shima.

According to estimates from NASA's Earth Observatory, both conjoined territories currently measure almost a kilometer long. Tripled in height, 

the diameter of Niijima is now greater than that of its neighbor and now peaks at 60 meters, The HuffPost writes.

The island is part of the Pacific Ring of Fire, which stretches from the coast of northern Chile and Siberia to Alaska and then south to New Zealand.

The newly merged island is roughly 1,000 kilometers south of Tokyo in the Ogasawara Islands, which is also called the Bonin Islands chain.

The Bonin Islands, where both Niijima and Nishino-shima lie, is made up of 30 small islands, all of which were formed by a massive ancient underwater volcano eruption.

Dozens of various kinds of indigenous plants as well as numerous breeds of animals have evolved in the islands over time.

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