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The Great Barrier Reef Outline 2 Physical Characteristics Of The Great Barrier Reef

2500 words - 10 pages

-Outline 2 physical characteristics of the Great Barrier ReefThe Great Barrier Reef is the world's largest coral reef system. It is located on the northeast coast of Queensland next to the Pacific Ocean. The reef extends from the Torres Straight Islands to Sandy Cape near Fraser Island. Nearly 3,000 individual coral reefs and some 300 small coral islands form the reef, which ranks as the world's largest structure made by living organisms .The reef is approximately 37,000 square kilometers, accounting for 13% of the world's total coral reefs. In 1975, The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority were established. The purpose of this was to conserve this area for the benefit of present and future generations by balancing conservation and human use. The actual park covers 344,800 square kilometers by covering the waters surrounding the reef. The reef's outer edge ranges from as close as 30 km to the Australian mainland, to as far as 250 km .The Great Barrier Reef supports around 350 species of stony coral and 1,500 species of fish, some of which are sharks. The stony corals that build coral reefs are slow-growing but long-lived corals. Many types of stony corals grow in the Great Barrier Reef, including branching corals, stag horn corals, massive corals, brain corals, plate corals, and mushroom corals .Coral reefs are the most ideal place for marine life to live. The large surface of the coral reef provides natural shelter and food. It is because of this that coral reefs are the homes of the largest ecosystems in the world. Some fish that inhabit The Great Barrier Reef include Damselfish, Wrasse, Butterfly fish, Angelfish, Cardinal Fish, Groupers and Basslets.Discuss the Human Environment and the Human Interactions that occur in the Great Barrier ReefThe coastal zone along the Great Barrier Reef contains the majority of marine tourism infrastructure, ports and harbours, urban and resort development and industrial development .UrbanStretching from Bamaga to Gladstone, there are more than 10 towns along the length of the Great Barrier Reef. This is also known as the coastal zone. Approximately 25% of the land area of Queensland is part of a network of 26 major river catchments that drain directly into the Great Barrier Reef marine Park. Run-off from the urban development is one of the largest impacts affecting the water quality of the Great Barrier Reef . There is extra stress on the Great Barrier Reef Marine Authority's ability to conserve the Great Barrier Reef as population growth rises in urban centres along the coastal zone. Increased growth often leads to increased demand for marine tourism, and recreational infrastructures such as marinas, ferry terminals, safe harbours and jetties .IndustryThe largest industry surrounding the Great Barrier Reef is fishing. The fishing industry in the Great Barrier Reef, controlled by the Queensland Government, is worth 1 billion Australian dollars annually . There are...

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