Huge Coral Reef Discovered Off Southern Australia

28.08.2015 14:48
Kategorie: News

Discovery Made By ROV

A blaze of colour in the new discovered deep-sea reef - © Parks Victoria
A blaze of colour in the new discovered deep-sea reef

Discovering a new reef doesn't happen every day. So, when the oceanographers from the Environmental Protection Agency in Parks Victoria realised what their ROV (autonomous underwater vehicle) had found at the Wilson Promontory Marine National Park, they were stunned.

It was a deepsea reef with dimensions comparable with the Great Barrier Reef. The momentous discovery was made when the oceanographers sent down a ROV to depths of 30 to 100 metres, with the intention of filming and mapping the underwater landscape. But what they saw were ocean habitats and ecosystems so extensive that it reminded them of the Great Barrier Reef.

Map of the seabed with dunes 80 to 90 metres deep, rich in fish and life - © Wilsons Promontory Meeresnationalpark
Map of the seabed with dunes 80 to 90 metres deep,
rich in fish and life.

There were coral reefs, sea whips and sponge gardens, cliffs, house-high rocks, ridges and caverns with a variety of colourful sponges, hard and soft corals and a great abundance of fish. Furthermore, there were also 90-metre deep holes with large schools of deep bass and big sand dunes (the largest was 30 metres high and two kilometres long!).

The park is actually known and famous for its scenery above water, we have no idea what is actually living in the depths of the sea,” said Steffan Howe, a marine scientist at Parks Victoria.

Well, no doubt this discovery will encourage more divers to visit the marine park!

Wilsons Promontory Marine National Park
The National Park is located southeast of Melbourne (Web: The marine park is less than 230 kilometres from Melbourne's CBD, but most Victorians are probably unaware of what lies in its waters. With its spectacular underwater landscapes, steep granite rocks and deep-sea sponges, it is a haven for divers. Its islands are home to colonies of small penguins, seabirds and sea lions. Covering an area of 15,550 hectares and with a coastline of 17 kilometres, it is the largest national marine park in Victoria, Australia.

Videos of the new discovered reef:

This is the underwater beauty of Wilsons Promontory Marine National Park, recently filmed by a robot working in its
deepest waters. The footage it captured, in water as deep as 95 metres, has revealed marine communities
which scientists say are equivalent to the beauty of the world-famous Great Barrier Reef.
Publication of Videos by courtesy of Parks Victoria