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May 13, 2011

New Fish and Coral Species Discovered in Bali Waters

DENPASAR Bali


Scientists have found eight new reef  fish and one new coral species in Bali waters.
US-based Conservation International said the new species included eels and damsels, the colourful little fish that dart among coral branches and help give reefs their dazzling appearance while playing a key role in reef ecology.
“We have carried out a marine survey in 33 sites around Bali island. We have identified 952 reef fish, and among them we discovered eight new species,” team senior adviser Mark Van Nydeck Erdmann said.
The surveys were carried out off the island’s northeast coast at Tulamben, a well-known recreational dive site, as well as Nusa Dua, Gili Manuk and Pemuteran, at depths of 10 to 70 metres.
Erdmann said the new fish species had not been named but they were in the genuses of Siphamia, Heteroconger, Apogon, Parapercis, Meiacanthus, Manonichthys, Grallenia and Pseudochromis.
In their two-week marine survey, which ended on Wednesday, the team also found a new species of Euphyllia, or bubble coral.
Indonesia is a massive archipelago of 17,000 islands which form part of the so-called Coral Triangle, an area of rich marine biodiversity deemed vital to the health of the seas and global food stocks.
Tulamben is the grave of the US Army Transport ship Liberty, which was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine in 1942.

The rich coral reefs around the coast, particularly around popular diving spots such as Tulamben, Amed, Menjangan or neighboring Nusa Penida, host a wide range of marine life, for instance Hawksbill Turtle, Giant Sunfish, Giant Manta Ray, Giant Moray Eel, Bumphead Parrotfish, Hammerhead Shark, Reef Shark, barracuda, and sea snakes. Dolphins are commonly encountered on the north coast near Singaraja and Lovina.
Many plants have been introduced by humans within the last centuries, particularly since the 20th century, making it sometimes hard to distinguish what plants are really native. Among the larger trees the most common are: Banyan trees, Jackfruit, coconuts, bamboo species, acacia trees and also endless rows of coconuts and banana species. Numerous flowers can be seen: hibiscus, frangipani, bougainvillea, poinsettia, oleander, jasmine, water lily, lotus, roses, begonias, orchids and hydrangeas exist. On higher grounds that receive more moisture, for instance around Kintamani, certain species of fern trees, mushrooms and even pine trees thrive well. Rice comes in many varieties. Other plants with agricultural value include: salak, mangosteen, corn, Kintamani orange, coffee and water spinach.
A team of scientists has conducted survey from April 29, 2011 to May 11, 2011 at 33 sea site of Bali. They have discovered 952 species of reef fish which 8 of them were new discoveries at Pemuteran, Gilimanuk, Nusa Dua, Tulamben and Candidasa and 393 coral species, including two new ones at Padangbai and between Padangbai and Amed.
Sources AFP and wikipedia 





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