Last Updated on February 16, 2023 by Jakob
The New Caledonia Barrier Reef is a large coral reef system located in the Pacific Ocean, off the coast of New Caledonia, a French territory in the South Pacific. It is one of the largest coral reefs in the world and is considered one of the most biodiverse marine ecosystems on the planet. The reef covers an area of approximately 24,000 square kilometers and is part of the larger Coral Sea Marine Park, which was established in 2018.
The New Caledonia Barrier Reef is home to over 9,000 species of marine life, including more than 1,700 species of fish, 473 species of coral, and a wide variety of sharks, whales, dolphins, and sea turtles. It also provides habitat for numerous endangered species, such as the dugong and the green sea turtle.
In addition to its ecological significance, the New Caledonia Barrier Reef is also important for its cultural value. The reef has been central to the way of life of the Kanak people, the indigenous inhabitants of New Caledonia, for thousands of years. The Kanak people have a deep spiritual and cultural connection to the reef, which is reflected in their traditional customs and practices.
However, like many coral reefs around the world, the New Caledonia Barrier Reef is under threat from a variety of human activities, including overfishing, pollution, and climate change. The reef has experienced significant coral bleaching events in recent years, which have been attributed to warming ocean temperatures caused by climate change. In 2018, the New Caledonia government announced a plan to protect the reef, which includes measures to limit fishing and to promote sustainable tourism practices.
Where exactly is the New Caledonia Barrier Reef?