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Bunaken National Park

Date of Submission: 07/02/2005
Category: Natural
Submitted by:
Ministry of Emvironment
Coordinates: N 1°35' - 1°49' E 124°39' - 124°35'
Ref.: 2002
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Description

This part of North Sulawesi was undergone multiple geologic stages. It is considered to be a ‘young’ continent of 5-24 million years of age which has undergone explosive volcanism more recently (1.5 to 5 million years ago) which resulted in the volcanic tuff that characterizes the existing topography. Manado Tua is an inactive volcano formed in a classical cone shape with a 27-45' slope. The island rises over 600 m above sea level, the highest elevation in the park. Bunaken Island has volcanic origins with a significant amount of uplifted fossil coral. At the west and central part of Bunaken Island (71m high) there is a flat plateau about 5Om above mean sea level (msl). Nain Island is also a dome-shaped island, 139m in height and with a slope of 20-40". Mantehage Island is relatively flat and seems to be sinking into the sea. The island has extensive mangrove forest flats, partially separated by saltwater channels. Siladen is a low-lying coral sand island with no significant topography. Arakan-Wawontulap and Molas-Wori on the mainland of North Sulawesi are relatively flat areas at the base of volcanic hills. The park has unique bathymetry which is an attraction for divers. The absence of a continental shelf in the northern part of North Sulawesi allows the coastal area of the park to drop directly down the continental slope. The sea depth between the islands of the park is 200-1,840m deep. In the coral ecosystem alone, Bunaken National Park covers an area of 89,095 hectares. The larger North Sulawesi area (also possessing potential for fbture inclusion in this WH site) contains approximately 280,000 ha. The marine national park area is home to thousands of different species of fish, coral, endangered marine mammals and reptiles, birds, molluscs and mangrove species. The Sanghie-Talaud island chain immediately to the north of the national park area is equally diverse (440 species from 52 sites in 2.3 million hectares). The uniqueness of Bunaken and the wider North Sulawesi area is its density of diversity in close proximity to a growing and populous part of Indonesia.