This triangle is home to the world's most bio-diverse population of marine species with Indonesia representing its hottest spot. Nowhere else has a comparable density, not to mention diversity, of underwater creatures and life been recorded.
In order to fully appreciate the exceptional status of this region, suffice it to say that the whole Caribbean area has only 9% of the corals and 35% of the fish species found in Indonesian waters.
The reason for such a big difference is that the entire area of the Atlantic Ocean underwent a mass extinction of species during the last ice age. All types of corals and animals vanished during this period and the other species never regained the strength of their former numbers.
In Indonesia - the centre of this biodiversity triangle - the variety seen underwater is truly astonishing. In certain bays and around small islands, you can find more species than in the entire Caribbean. In a research report conducted in 1997 on the island of Flores, respected marine biologists Rudie Kuiter and Gerald Allen counted 1,133 species of fish just in Maumere bay. This is still the highest number of species of fish ever counted in a specific area.
In Wakatobi, the recorded number of species of fish is at least 430, and in Raja Ampat, the same Gerald Allen, world-famous ichthyologist, counted the incredible number of 284 different species of fish counted during a single dive. In the same area, 465 different species of corals were found. As a result, scientists nowadays believe that this destination is the world's current no. 1 spot in terms of biodiversity.
Other world-class hubs of biodiversity include Manado and Lembeh, Central and South Sulawesi, Komodo, Flores, Alor and the Banda Sea, to name just a few. It should therefore come as no surprise that these hotspots are considered among the ultimate destinations for divers.
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