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Marine Places

Nusa Tenggara

Nusa Tenggara is a chain of around 500 coral-fringed islands in southern Indonesia. The northern islands are volcanic in origin, while the southern islands consist mainly of uplifted coral limestone. Many of the reefs have been only rarely explored. However, what surveys have been carried out indicate an extremely high diversity of marine life in this region. For example, a single large reef can contain more than 1,200 species of fish (more than in all the seas in Europe combined), and 500 different species of reef-building coral. Common animals here include eagle rays, manta rays, humphead parrotfish, and various species of octopuses and nudibranchs (sea slugs). Major threats to the reefs in Nusa Tenggara include pollution from land-based sources, sediment pollution from logging, removal of fish from the reefs for the aquarium trade, and reef destruction by blast fishing.

  • Pacific Ocean West
  • Type Fringing reefs, barrier reefs
  • Area 2,000 square miles (5,000 square km)
  • Condition Damaged by fishing practices
  • Location Southern Indonesia, from Lombok in the west to Timor in the east
Nusa Tenggara habitat mapzoom image