The coral reef situated near the group of small islands known under the name of Dutch Antilles offers those who come here the great opportunity to come close to the wonders of the aquatic world.
The Magnificence of Coral Colonies
The fringing reef here reaches the shore. It is formed mainly of young, soft coral colonies, their presence being an indicator of the fact that the reef is in excellent condition. Hard, elk-horn and stag-horn corals also abound, this being one of the few places where the spectacular fire coral can be found. The star coral is another variety that lives in these waters, the complicated structures it creates resembling a pagoda. The sandy bottom of the reef is the perfect place for scroll corals and for the superbly looking black corals.
Biodiversity – A Characteristic of the Coral Reef Here
Numerous species of fish of all sizes and shapes thrive in these waters rich in algae and sea weeds. Grunts, coneys, angelfish, goatfish, sergeant major, scorpion-fish, lizard-fish and parrotfish are some of the varieties even an amateur marine biologist can easily identify. The predators are represented by the whale sharks and the nurse sharks. The playful dolphins can also be met here, along with rays of many varieties. The Dutch Antilles coral reef is also known for the turtles and seahorses that live here.