The Alien-like Socotra Archipelago

The Alien-like Socotra Archipelago

Socotra is an archipelago of four islands off the coast of Yemen in the Indian Ocean. The largest island is also called Socotra, and makes up about 95% of the archipelago's landmass. The unique and numerous endemic plant and animal species make this island extremely alien-looking. On the archipelago, about 300 species are endemic, meaning they only live in one location.


Key Facts In This Video

  • 1

    A part of Yemen, the Socotra Archipelago has been called "the most alien place on Earth." (0:04)

  • 2

    Dracaena cinnabari is known as the dragon's blood tree because it oozes a dark red sap used in dye, cosmetics, and medicine. (1:11)

  • 3

    Because they are endemic, Socotra's species are particularly vulnerable to extinction. (2:36)

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