Home LATEST NEWS A giant coral reef discovered off Tahiti

A giant coral reef discovered off Tahiti

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meters deep”,”text”:”It is one of the largest coral reefs in the world to be more than 30 meters deep”}}”>It is one of the largest coral reefs in the world to be over 30 meters deep says in a press release UNESCO, which supports this scientific mission. The immaculate condition of the rose-shaped corals and the extent of the area they cover make this a very unusual findstresses UNESCO.

The reef extends over 3 kilometers long and between 30 and 65 meters wide, and is between 35 and 70 meters deep, specifies UNESCO. Some giant corals are two meters in diameter.

A French scientist explores corals in the waters off Tahiti, French Polynesia.

A French scientist explores corals in the waters off Tahiti, French Polynesia.

Photo: Associated Press/Alexis Rosenfeld

It is a little explored area. What we know well are the areas between zero and 30 metersexplains to AFP Laetitia Hedouin, marine biologist and specialist in corals, from the French research center CNRS and the environmental research organization CRIOBE.

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These corals show no signs of stress or diseaseshe continues, while corals located closer to the surface in French Polynesia experienced a bleaching episode in 2019. Starfish can also ravage corals by devouring them.

The diving expedition took place in November 2021, thanks to specific diving equipment to go down that far. The team completed dives totaling approximately 200 hours to survey the reef and were able to witness the coral spawningsays UNESCO.

Temperature sensors have been placed in the area. We are at the beginning of a monitoring program that we hope will be long term.to better understand why this coral reef has visibly not suffered from climate change and what its population dynamics are.

This finding also raises the question of the taking into account of these deep zones in the development of marine protected areasemphasizes Laetitia Hedouin.

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% of the planet’s seabed […] mapped”,”text”:”The state of knowledge of the oceans is still limited, with only 20% of the planet’s seabed […] mapped”}}”>The state of knowledge of the oceans is still limited, with only 20% of the planet’s seabed […] mappedstresses UNESCO.

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