The effect of this is an island chain, one of which, the big Island became the 5th highest island in the world. The next island in the chain, the seamount of Loihi is building and will surface in 10,000 years.
ORIGINS OF THE ANCIENT HAWAIIANS AND THEIR CULTRUE The isolation of the Hawaiian Islands in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, and the wide range of environments to be found on high islands located in and near the tropics, has resulted in a vast array of endemic flora and fauna. Hawaii has more endangered species per square mile than anywhere else. Ancient tribal Polynesians arrived on this virgin scene after long, amazing sea voyages in their double-hulled canoes. The early Polynesians were an adventurous seafaring people with highly developed navigational skills. They used the sun, stars and wave patterns to find their directions. Ancient Polynesians even created incredible maps of wave patterns by binding sticks together. Bird flight paths and cloud patterns were used to discern where islands were located. Entire villages set forth upon ocean going double-hulled canoes to discover unsettled lands.
Maternal mitrochondrial DNA evidence indicates that the ancient Polynesians, including the Hawaiians, are genetically linked to indigenous people of Southeast Asia. This is supported by both by archeological and linguistic evidence. Speakers of Austronesian languages spread into the western islands of Micronesia and then Melanesia between 3000 and 1500 BC. The historic path of the ancient Polynesians can be followed with a large degree of certainty through the arch-eological record they left behind. A distinct culture appeared c. 1500 BC in Northwest Melanesia, Known as the Lapita, this culture stands out in the archeological record with its large permanent villages with beach terraces located along the coasts. They also developed pottery in a wide variety of shapes and patterns.
From its origins in Melanesia the Lapita culture spread some 3,700 miles to the East to Samoa and Tonga. Here the distinct Polynesian culture developed and spread outward into the rest of the Polynesian triangle. Arch--eological evidence indicates that the Polynesians had reached the eastern corner at Easter Island, Western corner at New Zealand and the Northern corner Hawaii by 700 A.D., by contrast the Viking culture had not settled in Iceland until 875 AD.