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IRAQ's 1st Coral Reef 'discovered'

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posted on Mar, 22 2014 @ 10:37 AM

The first known coral reef off the coast of Iraq has just been discovered, according to a paper in the journal Scientific Reports.

The conditions at the site -- the mouth of the Shatt al-Arab River in southeastern Iraq -- are surprisingly turbulent and chilly for a reef, with seawater temperatures often in the 50s (Fahrenheit).

"We were entirely surprised to find a living coral reef under such harsh conditions," lead author Thomas Pohl of Germany's Institute for Geology Scientific Diving Center and his colleagues wrote. They added that the waters are often polluted with oil and are sediment loaded, making the discovery all the more surprising.

This caught me by surprise as well. Though I'm perplexed how could sea-faring locals to the area NOT have discussed it even in small talk over the centuries til now some German scientist finally acknowledge this thriving reef - apparently resilient so far - amidst cool temps as well as oil & sediment issues.

posted on Mar, 22 2014 @ 10:52 AM
reply to post by gardener

This one's been good at hiding. Now every Tom, Dick, and Ramoul will be out there with scuba gear breaking off a piece for their fish tanks. Humans discovering a new piece of nature usually is bad news for nature.

posted on Mar, 22 2014 @ 10:55 AM
reply to post by Aleister

Not always... yanno how everyone has been raving on about the Great Barrier Reef being destroyed? Well, seems to me, the living soft and hard coral have moved a bloody long way from Queensland.

I don't blame them. Great news and good to hear.

posted on Mar, 22 2014 @ 10:57 AM
Indeed.. i wonder is US taking bids on this new resource as to who will 'mine' the coral and livestock as is done in Afghanistan with every single resource already..

i can just hear the electricity popping in the water as all the local exotic fish get the shock of their life and float up in the water.. a fraction of them manage to survive this assault and end up in a 'Nemo' predicament, stressed, shipped across the world only to die in some tiny saltwater tank

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