The coral reefs in Maldives are truly stunning especially when seen up close; here are some insights worth knowing about this precious marine resource.
Small creatures called polyps are responsible for creating coral reefs; the framework of the reef is provided by the hard limestone skeleton that polyps secrete. The growth of coral is relatively slow, while coralline algae help to form a limestone base by cementing the framework of broken and dead coral.
Key Dive Sites
In the Maldives, resort options in the North Male Atoll are ideal for diving at some of the nation’s main reefs. Such properties include Kurumba Maldives from where you can visit the famed Banana Reef with its beautiful coral; HP Reef, Okobe Thila and Bodu Hithi Thila are amongst the other sites in which to see diverse coral.
Kinds of Reefs & Coral
A coral reef near the surface is called a “thila”, while a “faru” is a reef that is somewhat exposed during low tide; on the other hand, a reef that encircles a lagoon is referred to as a “falhu”. There’s a diverse array of coral too; varieties include brain, star, tree, staghorn and cup coral as well as colourful sea fans.
Protection & Conservation
Coral reefs are vital to maintain the balance in the marine ecosystem and help to protect low lying islands like in the Maldives. While the country has designated certain reefs as protected areas, some resorts are also engaged in coral conservation and propagation and provide guests with guidance on how to protect the marine environment.