Tahiti Pristine Coral reef

The scientists have recently discovered a coral reef along the coast of Tahiti. The reef is two miles long and is unaffected by anthropogenic activities and climate change.

About the coral reef

The coral reef was discovered during a dive expedition. The expedition was supported by UNESCO. The corals discovered were six feet in diameter. The scientists have witnessed coral spawning in the island.

Corals found in Mesophotic zone

The coral reefs were discovered at a depth of 100 feet to 210 feet. This is a bit deeper. That is, the corals were found in the mesophotic zone. These are the deepest zones till which the sunlight can penetrate. This depth protects the corals from human activities.

Not affected by Coral Bleaching

In 2019, the entire French Coral Polynesia was affected by coral bleaching. The coral bleaching occurred due to climate change and global warming. However, this new coral reef was not affected by the 2019 coral bleaching. This is mainly due to its depth.

What is coral bleaching?

The corals are marine invertebrates. They hold microscopic algae are zooxanthellae. The algae provides food for the corals and the corals provide accommodation to the algae. They are symbiotic. Due to global warming and increase in sea temperature, the corals find it difficult to hold the algae. They release them. The corals get their colours from these algae. When the algae is released they become colourless. This is called coral bleaching. With this, the corals die as they do not get food.

What is Coral spawning witnessed in the reef?

Coral spawning is a natural phenomenon. During coral spawning, multiple species of corals release their eggs and sperms. They float to the surface of the ocean, fertilise and form new larvae.  The synchronisation occurs after the new moon day.

Tahiti

Tahiti is the largest island in French Polynesia. It is located in the central Pacific Ocean. Tahiti was formed by volcanic activity. The island accounts to around 70% of the population of French Polynesia.

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