Animals of the Great Barrier Reef

Posted By Samuel Phineas Upham

Located in Australia, the Great Barrier Reef is home to a diverse set of wildlife. The ecosystem is self sustaining because so many organisms have managed to coexist in a single space.

The reef itself contains billions of tiny polyps, which can trace their roots back to the jellyfish family, and algae. The algae benefit from a safe hiding spot, while the polyps use them as building blocks to build the vast structures of reef.

Snorkelers are awed by the colorful coral, but the structures house almost thirty different species of whales, dolphins and porpoises. One of these creatures, the humpback whale, can grow up to 52 feet in length. These whales have a distinctive song that can last for up to 20 minutes, which may have something to do with mating habits but scientists are unclear.

Dugongs, which are part of the same family as manatees, also call the reef their home. These marine mammals have a life span of up to 70 years!

There are thousands of fish in the reef, including clownfish and red-throated emperor fish. There are more than 5,000 species of mollusks living in the reef too. Weaving through all of this are seventeen species of sea snake. Some of these sea snakes can dive as low as 100 meters, and they can stay submerged for as long as two hours in search of food.

Countless other animals call the reef their home, including sea turtles and crocodiles.

About the Author: Samuel Phineas Upham is an investor at a family office/ hedgefund, where he focuses on special situation illiquid investing. Before this position, Phin Upham was working at Morgan Stanley in the Media and Telecom group. You may contact Phin on his Samuel Phineas Upham website or LinkedIn.

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