An islet is a very small island. Most definitions are not precise, but some suggest that an islet has little or no vegetation and cannot support human habitation. It may be made of rock, sand, and/or coral; may be permanent or tidal; and may exist in the sea, rivers, or any other body of water.
As suggested by its origin islette, an Old Frenchdiminutive of "isle", use of the term implies small size, but little attention is given to drawing an upper limit on its applicability.
The World Landforms website says, "An islet landform is generally considered to be a rock or small island that has little vegetation and cannot sustain human habitation", and further that size may vary from a few square feet to several square miles, with no specific rule pertaining to size.
A Tahitian motu off the island of Raiatea at sunset
A rock, in the sense of a type of islet, is an uninhabited landform composed of exposed rocks, lying offshore, and having at most minimal vegetation, such as Albino Rock in the Palm Island group off Queensland, Australia.
Sea stack, a thin, vertical landform jutting out of a body of water.
Skerry, a small rocky island, usually defined to be too small for habitation, especially in Ireland.
Subsidiary islets, a more technical application, is applied to small land features isolated by water, lying off the shore of a larger island. Similarly, any emergent land in an atoll is also called an islet.
Tidal island, small islands (not always islets) which lie off the mainland of an area, being connected to it in low tide and isolated in high tide.
^"Islet Landforms". World Landforms of the Earth. Retrieved 29 April 2020.
^"Eyot". World Wide Words. 21 June 2003. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
^"Definition of eyot". www.dictionary.com. 20 April 2020. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
^Misachi, John (5 April 2019). "What is an Ait? Ait Defintion". WorldAtlas. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
^Sears, Robert (1847). A New and Popular Pictorial Description of England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, and the British Islands (6th ed.). R. Sears. pp. 479–481. Original from University of Iowa, Digitized 9 Mar 2015
^"Motus – What They Are and Why They're Key to the Tahiti Experience". LandLopers. 12 April 2017. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
^"Floristic composition and vegetation classification of the Penghu Southern Four Islands". Marine National Park Headquarters. 18 March 2016. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
^Romania and Ukraine avoid rocky horror show, Euronews, 03/02/09
^Hance D. Smith (1991). The Development of Integrated Sea Use Management. Taylor & Francis. p. 82. ISBN 978-0-415-03816-4.
Clive Schofield (2012). "Islands or Rocks, Is that the Real Question? The Treatment of Islands in the Delimitation of Maritime Boundaries". In Myron H. Nordquist; John Norton Moore; Alfred H.A. Soons; Hak-So Kim (eds.). The Law of the Sea Convention: US Accession and Globalization. Martinus Nijhoff Publishers. pp. 322–340. ISBN 978-90-04-20136-1.