French Polynesia

Juvenile clownfish exposed to artificial light at night die sooner than those exposed to natural light at night.
Juvenile clownfish exposed to artificial light at night die sooner than those exposed to natural light at night.

No artificial lights for Nemo, please!

Scientists have discovered that clownfish living closer to shore die sooner than their counterparts found farther offshore due to the difference in the amount of artificial-light exposure.

The more artificial light they were exposed to, the higher the mortality rate.

The study focused on the reefs around Moorea in French Polynesia. It involved exposing 42 juvenile clownfish to either artificial light at night (ALAN) or natural light (meaning, moonlight!) in the lagoon. Each of the 42 territories had a magnificent sea anemone.

Fakarava: Diving in the Tuamotu Islands of French Polynesia

The islet Sables Roses in Fakarava Atoll. Photo by Pierre Constant.
The islet Sables Roses in Fakarava Atoll. Photo by Pierre Constant.

Fakarava is an atoll in the Tuamotu archipelago located about 440km northeast of Tahiti in French Polynesia. Pierre Constant takes us on a journey to the pristine lagoons of Tuamotu and describes what awaits adventurous divers in its underwater realm.

French Polynesia’s Tuamotu Archipelago

Situated east of the more widely recognized Society Islands such as Tahiti, Moorea and Bora Bora, the Tuamotu Archipelago comprises around 80 islands and atolls stretching northwest to southeast across the South Pacific Ocean, creating the longest chain of atolls in the world.

Matthew Meier shares highlights from his adventure in Tuamotu, after visiting the archipelago on the only liveaboard operating in the area.

Tahiti's Humpback Whales

Breaching humpback whale, Tahiti. Photo by Gregory Lecoeur.

As our dive boat glided through Papeete Channel off the northern coast of Tahiti, two distinct spouts appeared on the horizon. We were carefully making our way toward them when suddenly two tails emerged out of the water and then majestically disappeared again. Benoit, our guide, carefully got into the water. He quietly swam in the wake of the whales until finally, he lifted his fist into the air to indicate their presence.