Locals do not use the name
they call it Rapa Nui. This Polynesian name seems to connect this remote and isolated island with other cultures in Oceania. The name is more accurate in defining cultural roots of this island.
In the seventeenth century, the island went through drastic environmental changes. Easter Island is the most extreme example of deforestation. The whole forest on the island was destroyed by the islanders themselves. This fact had serious consequences. Not only native trees became extinct, but the lack of food for humans caused extermination of all land birds. Also some plants and local fish vanished forever. The remote island had no contact with other societies and was not able repair its losses.