The park contains roughly 10,000 hectares of coral reef, lying at the heart of the Coral Triangle – the global centre of marine biodiversity.

Scientists have been visiting these reefs since the 1980s, and their research has shown that Tubbataha is home to no less than:

  • 700 species of fish
  • 360 species of corals (about half of all coral species in the world)
  • 11 species of sharks and rays
  • 13 species of dolphins & whales
  • 100 species of birds
  • Hawksbill & Green sea turtles.


“All of the signs are that Tubbataha Reef is nearing what we believe to be the true natural state,” says John McManus, a marine biologist at the Rosenstiel School at the University of Miami. “This is an amazing thing that’s happened.”

National Geographic, November 2017