Momotombo is stratovolcano near the center of the volcanic arc that passes through western Nicaragua. Last month geophysicists noted a slight increase in the number of earthquakes beneath the volcano. Earlier this month the number of earthquakes increased to a high level, reaching 100 per day and including events as large as magnitude 3.5. Residents near the volcano reported that the cloud of gas above the summit changed from white to black shortly after the magnitude 3.5 earthquake. Earthquake activity continues at high levels. Tremor, lasting from minutes to several hours, has been observed. No major changes were seen at the crater of Momotombo during an overflight.
An eruption of Momotombo in 1605-1606 destroyed the city of Leon, the former capital of Nicaragua. Momotombo has erupted 15 times since 1524, most recently in 1905.
Sources of Information:
Wilfried Strauch, Director of Geophysics, and Martha Navarro, Volcanologist, Instituto Nicaraguense de Estudios Territoriales (INETER), Managua, Nicaragua in Volcan ListServ, April 12, 1996
Simkin, T., and Siebert, L., 1994, Volcanoes of the World: Geoscience Press, Tucson, Arizona, 349 p.