Great Barrier Reef Abbey siemsen

GREAT BARRIER REEF

The Great Barrier Reef is located off the coast of Queensland. It is a reef that is 344,400km2 long and can be seen from space. The reef is made up of hundreds of islands and 600 types of coral with all different shapes and textures. The Great Barrier Reef is one of the most popular tourist spots in Australia. There are multiple things to do at the great barrier such as cruises, educational trips, scuba diving, whale watching and more. The Great Barrier Reef is one of the seven natural living wonders of the world and is the only living thing in the world that can be seen from space.

The Great Barrier Reef from space

IMPORTANCE OF THE REEF

The Great Barrier Reef is important for many different reasons. some of them being that it protects coastlines from waves and the effects of waves and tropical storms. It also provides a home for many marine life species and is also a food source for the people of Australia.

ABORIGINAL CONNECTION

The Great Barrier Reef is very important to Aboriginal people, and their connection with the Great Barrier Reef goes back over 60,000 years. Before Captain Cook arrived, the Great Barrier Reef was used as a fishing and hunting spot for the Aborignal. They also had made canoes to travel from island to island in the reef to catch different sorts of fish and sea life.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority works with the Aboriginal people to keep their connections with the Great Barrier Reef. They also think that keeping the connections with the Aboriginal people and the reef with help protect the reef. The Marine Park Authority created a group for Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander people in December 2008 called the ' land and sea country indigenous partnership program ' the program got $10 million towards the program over 5 years.

A source from the aboriginal times with the reef

LOCATION

The Great Barrier Reef is located on the coast of Queensland and Cairns. It is also 18.2871 degrees S, 147.6992 degrees E. The Great Barrier Reef is made up of many islands which means it does not have a distinct shape, but it is still possible to tell the size of the reef. The reef is 344,400 km2.

This is the location and topographic map of the Great Barrier Reef.

CONTOUR MAP

This contour map shows that the Great Barrier Reef is a low part of the sea compared with the sea around it as it is right on the coast of Queensland and it is in the shallow waters. It also shows that the reef slowly gets deeper as you go out further but right next to the edge of the reef it drops off into deep water, 23.7 metres deeper.

VEGETATION

There are many different types of plants and vegetation In the Great Barrier Reef. Sea does not have sea forests of anything like land but they still have vegetation. Humans use a lot of different types vegetation in the Great Barrier Reef, one of them being seaweed.

A vegetation of the great barrier reef

CLIMATE

The Climate ( weather ) at the Great Barrier Reef is tropical, It's has very hot summers. It has the same climate as Brisbane & cairns as it is in that area. The Great Barrier Reef only has two seasons, as it is a wet climate. These seasons are ' the green ' and ' the dry '

This is a climate graph for the Great Barrier Reef area.

ANIMALS & SEA LIFE

There are 1,625 different species of fish in the Great Barrier Reef. As well as there being 1400 different species of Coral, 3,000 different types of shells, 630 species of sea urchins/starfish, 14 species of breeding sea snakes and much more including different types of Wales and Dolphins.

Unfortunately, the reef is becoming endangered and destroyed by the events and actions of nature and of humans. Many different types of species are being destroyed.

FASCINATING SPECIES OF THE REEF

There are many fascinating creatures and species in the Great Barrier Reef but there are a few I find interesting. Here is 1 fish, animal and shell that I found most interesting.

PARROTFISH

There are many species of fish in the Great Barrier Reef and parrotfish are one of them. These fish are easy to find as you can identify them by their parrot like beak. These fish eat all different sorts of coral which they collect and eat with their sharp beak. Parrot fish can be found all through the Great Barrier Reef and can be seen in all different colours. Parrotfish grow up to 38cm long and are defiantly not the largest of the reef. These fish are not considered a food to humans either.

BOTTLE NOSE DOLPHIN

A bottle nose dolphin is one of the most common dolphins in the Great Barrier Reef and it can be spotted easily. These dolphins live in groups of around 10-30 other Dolphins. These groups are called pods. They eat forage fish and usually hunt on their own. They also use sounds such as squeaks to communicate. Also, bottle nose dolphin weighs 150-650kg.

CONE SHELLS

Cone shells are one of the many different types of shells in the Great Barrier Reef. These shells are very common and can also be found in lots different places other then the reef. They can have either a very thin or very thick shaped shell, they are also all different shapes and sizes. Cone shells are the shells from a cone snail. These are mostly found in mud, sand flats and shallow water areas and are picked up by many humans especially children along many beaches. The snails eat mostly marine organisms and worms along with other molluscs. Theses snails can be poisonous to humans as they do have venom.

HUMAN/TOURIST IMPACTS

As I mentioned earlier, the Great Barrier Reef is endangered. The reef is slowly dying along with all the creatures/species that live there and human actions and tourists are the reason why. Tourists help the reef as the money earned from the Tourist activities goes towards helping the reef and the animals and helps keep the marine park running. Coral reefs, such as the great barrier, need clean salty water to survive. Humans are dumping waste and polluting which is effecting the water conditions, leaving the reef and wildlife in the reef struggling to survive. Agriculture is also effecting the reef, even though agriculture is on land. It is estimated that 7 billion tones of waste goes into our oceans each year.

To save the Great Barrier Reef we need to not dump in our oceans and pollute. We should also not disturb any of the animals/creatures living in this area. Tourists need to still come visit the Great Barrier Reef as it helps the marine park continue running but they need to be more careful around the area when they are there.

As the reef is extinct and is slowly dying. The marine park will no longer have anything do show or do around the reef which will leave tourists not coming or leaving the Great Barrier Reef. This effects the reef as the marine park will not have any money to afford to keep the park running and to make sure the creatures stay healthy and alive.

This is a before and after picture of how these things are effecting the reef. The after picture shows what the reef look like in there near future and what it is starting to look like now.

Great Barrier Reef references

Many movies, videos and documentarys have been made about or including the Great Barrier Reef. Some of them being in David Attenboroughs documentarys or Disney's ' finding nemo '.

Finding Nemo is a movie about a fish that got taken from the Great Barrier Reef. This movie lets out a lot of messages and morals about the Great Barrier Reef and just life in general. This movie was released in 2003 and is still popular to this day. The movie earned $871 million worldwide before even releasing the movie on disk. The movie includes many species of fish and animals in the Great Barrier Reef but the mains ones were a Ocellaris clown fish and a blue tang.

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