Fiji Barrier Reef

About the Area

The 320 islands in Fiji are surrounded by waters home to a diverse ocean environment that include barrier and fringing coral reefs, mangroves, deep pelagic areas, and eelgrass beds.

These habitats and others are considered internationally and regionally important sites for marine biodiversity and support hundreds of species of fish, marine turtles, and nesting seabirds.

The coral reefs in this region have species assemblages that are among the most diverse in the world.

Local Species
Most abundant fishes include the delicate Round herring (Spratelloides delicatulus), Luminous cardinalfish (Rhabdamia gracilis), and the Spotted sardinella (Amblygaster sirm).

Among other species are two species of Giant clams (Tridacna gigas and Hippopus hippopus), Green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas), Hawksbill sea turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata), Leatherback seaturtle (Dermochelys coriacea), Olive ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys olivacea), and the Dugong (Dugong dugon).

Threats
Some of the reef areas and mangroves of the more populated islands have been drastically altered. There has also been significant run-off from pollution and sewage discharge from urban areas.

This combined with siltation due to dredging have lowered fish populations and injured natural habitats in and around the capital of Suva as well as Nadi and Lautoka areas of Viti Levu.

Overfishing, introduced species, marine turtles being hunted for their shells and meat, small tropical fish collected for the aquarium trade, all pose further threats.

Resources
Size:
N/A

Habitat type:
Tropical Coral

Geographic Location:
South Pacific

Conservation Status:
Relatively Stable/Intact

Quiz Time!

How 'giant' can the giant clams be?

Answer:
One of the species of giant clams found in the Fiji Barrier Reef ecoregion can grow as large as 1.2 m across. Compare that with the smallest species of clam in the world that is only 0.1 mm across!

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