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cayman reef cam

There are three types of coral reefs: barrier, fringing and atolls. Explore’s Cayman Reef Camera is located just inside of a fringe reef on the eastern side of Grand Cayman Island.

Atoll reefs form when a volcanic caldera collapses and sinks below the sea level. The outer ring surrounding the caldera that is near the surface of the water may sustain the corals that form a tropical reef. Atolls are therefore found in areas of high volcanic activity.

Barrier reefs form parallel to coastlines and are separated from the land by deep channels, lagoons and bodies of water. During low tide, some of the reef might be exposed, thus causing a barrier to ship navigation.

Fringe reefs also form parallel to coastlines however they are not separated from the land by open water and grow directly from the shoreline. Fringe reefs are the most common types of coral reefs on earth and are mostly found in the Caribbean Sea.

Grand Cayman Island

Grand Cayman is about twice the size of Manhattan and is situated between Cuba and Belize. The reefs surrounding Grand Cayman support 35 species of coral and hundreds of fish including queen triggerfish, black durgon, rainbow parrotfish, angelfish, wrasse, tarpon and balloonfish.

Caribbean Coral Reefs

About 4 million years ago, the Isthmus of Panama closed, isolating the Caribbean from the Pacific Ocean. This isolation, combined with thousands of years of evolution, has allowed the Caribbean to form a unique reef ecosystem not found anywhere else on earth.

The Caribbean is the most bio-diverse region of the greater Atlantic Ocean and is home to over 60 species of coral and over 500 species of reef fish. The epicenter of biodiversity in the Caribbean is the Belize Barrier Reef, which is the second largest barrier reef in the world, just after the Great Australian Barrier Reef.

Caribbean Reef Status

In recent decades, the tropical reefs of the Caribbean have been extensively damaged by human activity. In the 1960s, live coral covered about 55% of Caribbean reefs, today, live coral covers only about 15% of reefs.

Some of the factors leading to the decline of Caribbean reefs are overfishing, reef bleaching, development, coral disease, climate change and damage caused by boat anchors and tourists.

Learn More & Get Involved · Teens4Oceans
The Cayman Islands camera is situated just inside the fringe reef on Grand Cayman’s East End. It’s panning tour includes views of a coral that serves as a cleaning station for fish and cleaner shrimp as well as various projects undertaken by Teens4Oceans students and partner researchers.

  • topic: marine life

  • topic: coral reefs

  • location: grand cayman

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The Cayman Islands camera is situated just inside the fringe reef on Grand Cayman’s East End. It’s panning tour includes views of a coral that serves as a cleaning station for fish and cleaner shrimp as well as various projects undertaken by Teens4Oceans students and partner researchers.

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location: Grand Cayman at Ocean Frontiers

best hours: 6:00am - 7:00pm

time zone: Eastern Standard Time

links: Teens4Oceans
Ocean Frontiers
Reefcam
View Into The Blue

There are three types of coral reefs: barrier, fringing and atolls. Explore’s Cayman Reef Camera is located just inside of a fringe reef on the eastern side of Grand Cayman Island.

Atoll reefs form when a volcanic caldera collapses and sinks below the sea level. The outer ring surrounding the caldera that is near the surface of the water may sustain the corals that form a tropical reef. Atolls are therefore found in areas of high volcanic activity.

Barrier reefs form parallel to coastlines and are separated from the land by deep channels, lagoons and bodies of water. During low tide, some of the reef might be exposed, thus causing a barrier to ship navigation.

Fringe reefs also form parallel to coastlines however they are not separated from the land by open water and grow directly from the shoreline. Fringe reefs are the most common types of coral reefs on earth and are mostly found in the Caribbean Sea.

Grand Cayman Island

Grand Cayman is about twice the size of Manhattan and is situated between Cuba and Belize. The reefs surrounding Grand Cayman support 35 species of coral and hundreds of fish including queen triggerfish, black durgon, rainbow parrotfish, angelfish, wrasse, tarpon and balloonfish.

Caribbean Coral Reefs

About 4 million years ago, the Isthmus of Panama closed, isolating the Caribbean from the Pacific Ocean. This isolation, combined with thousands of years of evolution, has allowed the Caribbean to form a unique reef ecosystem not found anywhere else on earth.

The Caribbean is the most bio-diverse region of the greater Atlantic Ocean and is home to over 60 species of coral and over 500 species of reef fish. The epicenter of biodiversity in the Caribbean is the Belize Barrier Reef, which is the second largest barrier reef in the world, just after the Great Australian Barrier Reef.

Caribbean Reef Status

In recent decades, the tropical reefs of the Caribbean have been extensively damaged by human activity. In the 1960s, live coral covered about 55% of Caribbean reefs, today, live coral covers only about 15% of reefs.

Some of the factors leading to the decline of Caribbean reefs are overfishing, reef bleaching, development, coral disease, climate change and damage caused by boat anchors and tourists.

Learn More & Get Involved · Teens4Oceans
The Cayman Islands camera is situated just inside the fringe reef on Grand Cayman’s East End. It’s panning tour includes views of a coral that serves as a cleaning station for fish and cleaner shrimp as well as various projects undertaken by Teens4Oceans students and partner researchers.