An ode to coral - Respect for the reef builders!

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There’s nothing more beautiful than an anchorage surrounded by vast, protective coral reefs... and nothing more vibrant on the surface, too: coral is home to incredible biodiversity.

Coral is a marine creature as mysterious as it is captivating. Think of it as a bustling community of tiny polyps, marine creatures that secrete calcium carbonate to build incredible limestone structures. Together, they create the most effective protection known on earth against ocean swells.

Coral has become increasingly rare in recent decades. Over the years, I have seen sites lose all of their coral; all that remains are white, lifeless graveyards. One of the main causes of bleaching is thermal shock. Unfortunately, most corals can only cope with a very narrow temperature delta - between 23 and 29°C (73 to 84°F).

On a global scale, it is now becoming difficult to halt this trend. Global warming is the main cause of the disappearance of coral in many places. Phenomena such as El Niño are also causing major damage to these architects of the seabed.

There are still a few extremely well-preserved areas, such as the Chagos Islands, the Chesterfield Reef and ...

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