Coral reefs are of great biological importance to the planet. For example, Mexico is part of the second-largest barrier reef in the world.
Nowadays, one way to know and take care of them is through sustainable tourism. By doing this, people can learn about their ecological value while enjoying their extraordinary attractions.
The importance of coral reefs
As they are linked to other ecosystems, coral reefs change the direction and speed of ocean currents. But on the other hand, they help establish different coastal ecosystems such as mangroves and seagrasses.
They provide ecosystem services such as erosion prevention, wave force reduction, protection against storms and hurricanes, habitat, and reproduction sites.
Who lives in the reefs?
Algae of different colors, green, red, and brown, within these ecosystems live. Other reefs’ inhabitants are amphipods, anemones, sponges, mollusks, crustaceans, and multicolored fish, among other species.
Among the most common reefs are the Coral Reefs that are conformed by animals that live together, forming colonies of thousands of individuals called coral. They host about 25% of all marine biodiversity.
Secondly are the Rocky, formed by blocks of rock of various sizes, which serve as a substrate for algae and invertebrates and a refuge for fish. Another type are the submerged formed by coral skeletons sunk by the sea level rise during the previous 10,000 years.
Finally, the Artificial ones, built by blocks of rocks, shipwreck structures, and concrete piles, provide shelter to many organisms, including corals.
Routes to discover coral reefs in Mexico
At Rutopia, we have routes to learn more about their importance and marvel at their charm. One route is in Oaxaca on the warm waters of Huatulco, where you will find the most important coral reefs on the Mexican Pacific coast.
Also, in the Yucatan Peninsula and Quintana Roo, you can find them in Puerto Morelos Reef National Park, which is part of the Mesoamerican Reef System. The Alacranes Reef, the Banco Chinchorro Biosphere Reserve, and Sian Ka’an Reefs Biosphere Reserve.
Finally, in Baja California, you can visit Cabo Pulmo National Park, the only coral reef in the Gulf of California and the oldest reef on the American Pacific coast. And Bahía, La Paz, where the reefs create refuge zones for the ecosystem of the place.
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