More coral reef species than anywhere else on Earth. Six of the world’s 7 marine turtle species. 3,000 marine fish species. A 6-million square kilometer ecosystem that fuels economies and supports the livelihoods of over 100 million people.
About the Coral Triangle
The Coral Triangle is a marine region that spans those parts of Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, the Solomon Islands and Timor-Leste with at least 500 species of reef-building corals.1 The Coral Triangle encompasses portions of 2 biogeographic regions: the Indonesian-Philippines Region, and the Far Southwestern Pacific Region.
Coral Triangle Biodiversity
- 76% (605) of the world’s coral species (798) are found in the Coral Triangle, the highest coral diversity in the world.
- The epicenter of that coral diversity is found in the Bird’s Head Peninsula of Indonesian Papua, which hosts 574 species (95% of the Coral Triangle, and 72% of the world’s total). Within the Bird’s Head Peninsula, the Raja Ampat archipelago is the world’s coral diversity bull’s eye with 553 species.
- The Coral Triangle has 15 regionally endemic coral species (species found nowhere else in the world), and shares 41 regional endemic species with Asia.
Coral Reef Fish
- The Coral Triangle has more coral reef fish diversity than anywhere else in the world: 37% (2,228) of the world’s coral reef fish species (6,000), and 56% of the coral reef fishes in the Indo-Pacific region (4,050).
- 8% (235 species) of the coral reef fishes in the Coral Triangle are endemic or locally restricted species. Within the Coral Triangle, four areas have particularly high levels of endemism (Lesser Sunda Islands, Papua New Guinea – Solomon Islands, Bird’s Head Peninsula, and the Central Philippines).
- 6 of the world’s 7 marine turtle species, including the leatherback marine turtle, found in places such as the Northern Bird’s Head Peninsula / Waigeo region, Papua (Indonesia), as well as Lea region (Papua New Guinea), New Georgia (Solomon Islands).
Cetaceans (Whales, Dolphins, etc.)
- The Coral Triangle is frequented by the blue whale, the largest animal to ever live on Earth.
- Other Coral Triangle whales include the sperm whale (found throughout Coral Triangle waters and the Savu Sea, especially Solor-Alor region).
- Dolphins, porpoises, and the endangered dugong.
Source: World Wildlife Fund