The Great Blue Hole of Belize

Posted by Meg on 8:58 AM No comments

 The Great Blue Hole is located off the coast of Belize; it is found in the middle of the Lighthouse Reef ecosystem. It lies near the center of Lighthouse Reef, a small atoll 70 kilometres (43 mi) from the mainland and Belize City.
 It was formed during several episodes of Quaternary glaciation when sea levels were much lower - the analysis of stalactites found in Great Blue Hole shows that formation has taken place 153,000, 66,000, 60,000, and 15,000 years ago. As the ocean began to rise again, the caves were flooded. The Great Blue Hole is a part of the larger Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System, a World Heritage Site of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

It is a underwater sinkhole that measures 984 feet (300 m) across. The sink hole plunges 394 feet (120 m) deep and provides divers with a crystal clear haven for exploring this underwater wonder. this ocean-floor sinkhole is believed to be the world’s largest blue hole. 

Divers descend into the Blue Hole's tranquil abyss to see geological wonders and fascinating marine life. Giant stalactites, dripstone sheets, and columns are located in the Gallery at the southern rim of the Great Blue Hole. These structures formed in a dry cavern above sea level during glacial periods.

The Blue Hole and surrounding reef are commonly home to the Caribbean Reef Shark, the Blacktip Shark, nurse sharks, giant groupers, and abundant other aquatic life. Although not routinely seen, the sinkhole and surrounding reef have also been home to the bull shark and the hammerhead shark.

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