Clown fish thrive in coral reefs, as do most fish. Reefs are natural living homes and communities for fish and in Florida and make for great tourism and diving. In fact, Florida is the only place in North America that has natural living coral reef, according to divespots.com.
I am a Floridian born and raised. My home town even has the word "beach" in it...Deerfield Beach to be exact. Scuba diving is one of my favorite hobbies and one of the best ways to bond with my family. Last time me and my dad went diving, he speared a fish and I fed it to a moray eel who was hiding inside a reef. Nothing's better than breathing underwater together exploring another ecosystem.
An ecosystem that is getting destroyed due to ocean acidification, sadly.
Oceans have gotten 25% more acidic in the past two centuries and the pH only dropped from 8.2 to 8.1!
And guess what? Scientists estimate that in this century, the pH will drop another .5.
I can't help but sigh as I write this, but I feel fortunate to be able to experience scuba diving and I really recommend it. People from across the world visit Florida to dive our reefs. Since half of Florida's beauty is under water, dive boats and shops are everywhere. That's a lot of jobs. Thousands flock to the shores to put on their fins and breath in another world. Time traveling through ship wrecks and swimming through a school of a fish in a room that was once inhabited by the Captain.
I've dove dozens of ship wrecks. There are over 200 shipwrecks from Deerfield Beach to Fort Lauderdale, only a 20 minute driving distance, according to Dixie Divers-- where I got scuba certified. Half of them are purposely sunk to create artificial reefs...because natural reefs they aren't doin' so well with man-made climate change adding surplus amounts of CO2 to the water. Colorful reefs turn gray. Oil spills devestate communities of wild life.
And the beauty of where I grew up is disappearing.
There are two parts of Deerfield Beach: mainland and the island. I live on the island. I live a 5 minute walk from the beach and I live on the inter coastal waterway which connects to the ocean. I may be a beach bum at heart, but I will not sit here and let carbon emissions ruin our natural world. This is my backyard that I want to return to with my grandchildren. I want to scuba dive when I have grandchildren, like my grandfather did with my mom and dad. I want to see species of fish, more beautiful color combinations of the coral and fish scales, and I want Deerfield Beach island to stay an island...
But with sea levels rising due to global warming...my hometowm may just become another artificial reef.