The Eastern Arctic Seas Encyclopedia

2016 Edition
| Editors: Igor S. Zonn, Andrey G. Kostianoy, Aleksandr V. Semenov

Petra (Peter) Islands

Reference work entry

Petra (Peter) Islands – two low-lying islands in the Laptev Sea, located at the northeastern end of the Taymyr Peninsula (Pronchishchev Coast), at the entrance of Petra (Peter) Bay between Maria Pronchishcheva Bay and the Faddey Bay, Krasnoyarsk Krai, Russia. The islands have an elongated shape with a smoothly curved coastline. The northern Peter Island is an area of approx. 175 km2, separated from the east coast of Taymyr by a narrow strait of 1.2–1.6 km, has a length of approx. 20 km and a width of 2–9 km, and is located 9 km to the southeast and a little further from the coast of the mainland, more rounded in shape, the length of approx. 22 km, and 8 km in width on average. The islands are separated by a strait 3–6 km in width. The area is approx. 300 km2. Petra Islands also include the islands of Dozhdevoy, Vstrech, Kleshnya, Serpastyi, Volnolomnyi, Mnogomysnyi, Bezymyannyi, Andreya, and Koshka (Arctic climate). The sea around the islands most of the year is covered with ice, and even in summer near the islands, there is a drifting pack ice that helps the animals frequently move from the mainland to the islands. The islands are located on the Northern Sea Route. One of the islands was discovered in 1736 by the Lena-Khatanga detachment of the Great Northern Expedition of 1735–1736 under the command of Lieutenant V. V. Pronchishchev. It is called the Island of St. Peter in 1739 by Kh. Laptev, who then applied this name to all three islands discovered by him.

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