The Great Barrier Reef


Helen Scales and Lisk Feng offer a superb exploration of The Great Barrier Reef. From stories told by the Aboriginal, to the documentation of Captain James Cook and navigation of Captain Matthew Flinders, its wonders were realised. Thereafter, divers and travellers trawled its glories, from its fish to birds, marine mammals to sparkling islands.

However, as pollution, tankers and plastics congested and poisoned its waters, so scientists like ‘Charlie’ John Veron  realised the irreversible effects of coral bleaching; the reef was being killed. Over three years, including 2020, The Great Barrier Reef has been poisoned. As we read through its history, inhabitants, behaviour and role within our planet, we become further invested in its survival.

Bookwagon recommends The Great Barrier Reef as a superb piece of non-fiction reading. Furthermore, we recommend this book for anybody researching titles about the environment, islands, climate change, species or exploration. It is a superb piece.

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The Great Barrier Reed

Helen Scales and Lisk Feng

(Flying Eye Books)

The Great Barrier Reef was navigated by Captain Matthew Flinders between 1801-1803. He mapped and named this Unesco World Heritage site. Today, it has more than 10, 000 visitors to dive into its best known shipwreck, alone.
However, this world wonder is more than a recommended place to dive. Helen Scales and Lisk Feng detail a wealth of information about this place, from its location and formation to its inhabitants. Thereafter, we learn the equipment and preparation necessary to dive, to the life and behaviour of coral. After that we look at notable scientists who have investigated the reef, including ‘Charlie’ John Veron, the ‘godfather of coral’ who first identified coral bleaching.
Identification and descriptions of the species that live and depend the reef is fulsome and fascinating. We read about the sea slugs, nudibranch, shells and octopus ahead of the ‘odd couples’ to be found, rather like Made for Each Other. Other inhabitants of the reef include shark, marine mammals, turtles, birds and reptiles.
This special place is at severe risk for a variety of reasons. Helen Scales and Lisk Feng explain why and how its situation became so dire, for example coral bleaching and plastics’ pollution. Yet they proceed to explain what can be done to save the reef, from ‘catching corals’ to employing different technologies.
The Great Barrier Reef resonates in everyone’s thoughts as a place of wonder and sanctuary. Aboriginal stories and Captain James Cook’s exploration expanded upon its glory. This book makes clear its diversity, strength and uniqueness. Bookwagon recommends The Great Barrier Reef to our readers.


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