Rare coral reef in pristine condition found in deep waters near Tahiti

Over the past several decades, coral reefs across the globe have been shrinking due to a variety of factors, including overfishing and pollution. 最近, 然而, a stretch of coral reef has been discovered that researchers have described aspristine.

Located off the coast of Tahiti, researchers have discovered a coral reef that is still in very healthy condition.

Located off the coast of Tahiti, researchers have discovered a coral reef that is still in very healthy condition. (Alexis Rosenfeld/@alexis.rosenfeld via AP)

The reef is located off the coast of Tahiti. According to a report by the Associated Press (美联社), the reef was first discovered by a researcher at the French National Center for Scientific Research during a recreational dive with a local diving club.

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Laetitia Hedouin told the AP that she realized that the reef was worth studying as soon as she saw it. She said it looked like it hadn’t been affected by a bleaching event that occurred in 2019.

The coral reef stretches two miles and sits in unusually deep waters, sitting between 115-feet to 230-feet beneath the surface of the water.

Researchers have spent 200 hours diving down to the reef to collect samples and take photographs and measurements.

Researchers have spent 200 hours diving down to the reef to collect samples and take photographs and measurements. (Alexis Rosenfeld/@alexis.rosenfeld via AP)

This depth posed a challenge for researchers, as they could only spend a limited amount of time on each trip. The divers brought special equipment with them and spent 200 hours taking photographs, samples and measurements of the reef.

Coral are tiny ocean animals that build reefs to live in. These coral reefs are an important part of the ocean’s ecosystem. 关于 14% of the world’s coral reefs died between 2009 和 2018. Pollution, overfishing and climate change have all been listed as reasons responsible for the decline in coral reef.

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This reef is unique due to its location in deep ocean water and its rose-petal like shape.

This reef is unique due to its location in deep ocean water and its rose-petal like shape. (Alexis Rosenfeld/@alexis.rosenfeld via AP)

Researchers are still trying to determine if it’s possible more reefs like this exist in other deep areas of the ocean, or if this is a unique reef. More dives are planned at the reef in the coming months, and the researchers are hoping that their findings will help them locate more reefs of this nature.

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