WHERE HAVE ALL THESE SPECIES COME FROM?

Asian Diver (English) - - Man & Sea -

Marine an­i­mals are fun­da­men­tally dif­fer­ent to their ter­res­trial coun­ter­parts. More of­ten than not, marine crea­tures have a pelagic lar­val stage in their life cy­cle, dur­ing which time their ba­bies can float far and wide at the whim of ocean cur­rents. As a re­sult they are dis­trib­uted across huge dis­tances.

Land-liv­ing an­i­mals on the other hand are con­strained by oceans, moun­tains, rivers and other phys­i­cal bar­ri­ers that they are un­able to cross. Even birds can be scared to cross nar­row stretches of sea; Wil­son’s and red birds of par­adise are found only on Waigeo and Batanta Is­lands in Raja Am­pat, de­spite Salawati be­ing the other side of a strait just a few kilo­me­tres wide. As a re­sult of marine crea­ture’s pelagic stage, there are very few bar­ri­ers to pre­vent marine an­i­mals from reach­ing even the most re­mote atolls. Many co­ral reef fish species are found all the way from the east coast of Africa to the mid Pa­cific.

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