Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Tun Sakaran Marine Park, Semporna

From Lost Borneo blog:

Gazetted in 2004 as Sabah’s seventh state park, Tun Sakaran Park encompasses 35,000 hectares, by far the largest marine park in Malaysia. Located within the park are 8 islands which make up only 954 hectares of the total area. The largest of these islands are Bodgaya and Boheydulang, both of which are the protruding parts of an extinct volcano. Other islands are Sebangkat, Selakan, Maiga, Sibuan, Mantabuan, Church Reef and Kapikan Reef.

Despite what is written in some publications, Sipadan (and Mabul) is not part of Tun Sakaran Park. Sipadan is located south of Semporna, whereas the marine park is towards the north-east, only 20 minutes offshore from Semporna, but near to the international maritime border with the Philippines.

The importance of this area was realized as far back as 30 years ago, and Sabah Parks and WWF have worked hard to safeguard its unique treasures. Tun Sakaran Park has higher species diversity than at any other site in Malaysia. This includes 544 species of coral reef fish, 255 species of hard coral and 70 species of soft coral. Some of the species have not been recorded elsewhere in Sabah, and some have only just been discovered. In simple terms, the biodiversity here is greater than at Sipadan.

Continue reading (incl. pics) at: Tun Sakaran Marine Park, Semporna

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