MATTIAS KLUM

THE CORAL EDEN (2011)

The remarkably diverse coral reefs, mangroves and lush archipelago in the Raja Ampat Islands of West Papua, Indonesia, is the main setting for this film. Dozens of fish and coral species – including two new species of shark that walk on their fins – have recently been discovered in these waters. Here, in an area covering 45 million acres of marine environment, researchers have documented more than 1,400 species of fish and 600 species of reef-building coral, the latter equal to 75 percent of the world’s known total. All of this exists within a territory that is small enough to actually protect and preserve. Raja Ampat sparkles with life forms of every shape and hue imaginable, and harbor a wealth of species, including some of nature’s earliest creations. In the film, scientific research is used to explain the importance of biodiversity down to its smallest microorganisms, which are essential to and in many ways the foundation of all life on Earth.

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