Palancar Reef

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Palancar Reef is a large coral reef on the southwest side of the island of Cozumel and is part of the Arrecifes de Cozumel National Park. The site, popular with scuba divers, is divided into several sections based on depth and coral formations. Dive depths range from 50 to 110 feet (15 to 34 m), with coral swim-throughs in many places.

Coral reef Outcrop of rock in the sea formed by the growth and deposit of stony coral skeletons

A coral reef is an underwater ecosystem characterized by reef-building corals. Reefs are formed of colonies of coral polyps held together by calcium carbonate. Most coral reefs are built from stony corals, whose polyps cluster in groups.

Cozumel island in Quintana Roo, Mexico

Cozumel is an island and municipality in the Caribbean Sea off the eastern coast of Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula, opposite Playa del Carmen. It is separated from the mainland by Cozumel Channel and is close to the Yucatán Channel. The municipality is part of the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico.

Arrecifes de Cozumel National Park Marine protected area in the Cozumel reef system off Mexico

The Arrecifes de Cozumel National Park is off the coast of the island of Cozumel in the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico. The Cozumel reef system is part of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, the second largest coral reef system in the world. Even though almost the entire island of Cozumel is surrounded by coral reefs, the park only encompasses the reefs on the south side of the island. It begins just south of the International Pier and continues down and around Punta Sur and up just a small portion of the east side of the island. The park contains both shallow and mesophotic coral reefs and extends to the 100 m depth isobar.

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Sealife

Pomacanthidae family of fishes

Marine angelfish are perciform fish of the family Pomacanthidae. They are found on shallow reefs in the tropical Atlantic, Indian, and mostly western Pacific Oceans. The family contains seven genera and about 86 species. They should not be confused with the freshwater angelfish, tropical cichlids of the Amazon Basin.

Barracuda genus of fishes, the Barracudas

A barracuda is a large, predatory ray-finned fish known for its fearsome appearance and ferocious behaviour. The barracuda is a saltwater fish of the genus Sphyraena, the only genus in the family Sphyraenidae which was named by Constantine Samuel Rafinesque in 1815. It is found in tropical and subtropical oceans worldwide ranging from the eastern border of the Atlantic Ocean to the Red Sea, on its western border the Caribbean Sea, and in tropical areas of the Pacific Ocean. Barracudas reside near the top of the water and near coral reefs and sea grasses.

Crab infraorder of crustaceans

Crabs are decapod crustaceans of the infraorder Brachyura, which typically have a very short projecting "tail" (abdomen), usually entirely hidden under the thorax. They live in all the world's oceans, in fresh water, and on land, are generally covered with a thick exoskeleton and have a single pair of pincers. Many other animals with similar names – such as hermit crabs, king crabs, porcelain crabs, horseshoe crabs, and crab lice – are not true crabs.

Dive locations

Conservation

On September 23rd 2019 the Natural Protected Areas Commission (CONANP) announced that it is temporarily closing a section of the reef from Palancar Gardens all the way around the south tip of the Island. The closure is planned to be in effect from October 7th 2019 to December 15th 2019, at which point they will re-evaluate the health of the reef.

See also

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Outline of recreational dive sites Hierarchical outline list of articles about rereational dive sites

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