Huge Coral Reef Discovered Off Southern Australia

by    DiveSSI    28th August 2015
15.1
A blaze of colour in the new discovered deep-sea reef (c) Wilson Promontory Marine National Park
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Discovering the deepsea reef (c) Wilson Promontory Marine National Park
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Map of the seabed with dunes 80 to 90 metres deep, rich in fish and life (c) Wilson Promontory Marine National Park

Discovery Made By ROV

Discovering a new reef doesn't happen every day. So, when the
oceanographers from the Environmental Protection Agency in Parks
Victoria realised what their ROV (autonomous underwater vehicle) had found at the Wilson Promotery Marine National Park, they were stunned. 

It was a deepsea reef with dimensions comparable with the Great Barrier Reef. The momentous discovery was made when the oceanographers sent down a ROV to depths of 30 to 100 metres, with the intention of filming and mapping the underwater landscape. But what they saw were ocean habitats and ecosystems so extensive that it reminded them of the Great Barrier Reef. 

There were coral reefs, sea whips and sponge gardens, cliffs,
house-high rocks, ridges and caverns with a variety of colourful
sponges, hard and soft corals and a great abundance of fish.
Furthermore, there were also 90-metre deep holes with large schools of deep bass and big sand dunes (the largest was 30 metres high and two kilometres long!).

The park is actually known and famous for its scenery above water, we have no idea what is actually living in the depths of the sea,” said Steffan Howe, a marine scientist at Parks Victoria.

Well, no doubt this discovery will encourage more divers to visit the marine park!

Videos:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgmkIGytCpo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z8eeeose5Mw

Wilsons Promotery Marine National Park
The National Park is located southeast of Melbourne. With its
spectacular underwater landscapes, steep granite rocks and deep-sea
sponges, it is a haven for divers. Its islands are home to colonies of
small penguins, seabirds and sea lions. Covering an area of 15,550
hectares and with a coastline of 17 kilometres, it is the largest
national marine park in Victoria, Australia.

Written by
DiveSSI
Date
28th August 2015
Where
Victoria, Australia

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