07 November 2012
Mozambique approves Africa's largest marine protected area
The southern African country of Mozambique has created Africa's largest coastal sanctuary. The Primeiras and Segundas Archipelago, a chain of 10 sparsely inhabited barrier islands and two coral reef complexes, has been declared a marine protected area by the Mozambican government. The archipelago, which is covering more than 1,040,926 hectares, includes the most robust and diverse coral community in the country. It is rich in mangroves, marine life, deep underwater canyons and large seagrass beds. Due to cold nutrient-rich upwellings, the archipelago is spared coral bleaching, a common problem in other coral-rich areas, making these some of the most globally productive and important reefs on the planet.