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Border disputes are a constant issue around the world, with countries jostling for control over patches of land for centuries. This documentary from The Atlantic looks into a lesser known battle between the United States and Canada over a tiny island in the Gulf of Maine.


Machias Seal Island is a barren, treeless island of only around 20 acres, but the island and the waters around at are at the centre of a heated dispute over fishing rights between the two usually cooperative countries, and with more industry potentially coming to the area, the jostling for control is only going to intensify.

A Surprising U.S. Canada Border Dispute Gif1

The island itself features a lighthouse that is inhabited by a Canadian lighthouse keeper, and the island attracts lots of bird-watchers due to its variety of wildlife. However, with the promise of oil drilling in the Gulf of Maine, interest in the island will change from its wildlife to its resources soon.


The documentary looks in depth at the people who fish and patrol the seas around the island, as well as the political experts who are trying to unravel a dispute that has lasted for decades.

A Surprising U.S. Canada Border Dispute Gif2

Machias Seal Island|United States|Canada|Documentary

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