island of the Netherlands Antilles, in the Caribbean Sea. It lies 7 miles (11 km) southeast of Saba and south of Sint Maarten. Sint Eustatius measures 6 miles (10 km) long by 3 miles (5 km) wide and has a total land area of 8 square miles (21 square km). The island is dominated by two extinct volcanoes, with a flat central plain separating the two. Sint Eustatius lies in the trade wind belt and receives an average 44 inches (1,125 mm) of rainfall annually, mainly between May and November; but climatic conditions vary considerably over the island. On the east (Atlantic) side the wind is strong and the vegetation low. On the calm west (Caribbean) side grow tall palms and breadfruit trees and thick banana groves. At White Wall, on the southern slope of one of the volcanoes, The Quill, arid conditions prevail and xerophytic plants (adapted to growth with limited water) predominate. The remainder of the island is covered with tough, thorny bushes and trees, many of which lose their leaves during the dry season.
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