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island group in the South Pacific Ocean, about 500 miles (800 km) east of New Zealand. Composed of 10 islands, they are primarily of volcanic formation, but areas of limestone indicate that they may once have been part of New Zealand. Chatham Island, the largest (347 square miles [900 square km]), rises to 942 feet (287 metres); more than 20 percent of its poorly drained surface is covered by shallow lagoons. Pitt Island (about 24 square miles [62 square km]) lies 13 miles (21 km) from Chatham. Tarakoikoia is a rock pinnacle to the southeast rising abruptly to 566 feet (172 metres).