Hikkaduwa Beach & Coral Reef

Foliaceous Montipora species dominate the coral reef.Encrusting and branching species are also present. Faviidae and Poritidae corals are contained in the inshore areas of the reef in massive colonies. Staghorn, elkhorn, cabbage, brain, table and star corals are all present in the reef. Corals of 60 species belonging to 31 genera are recorded from the reef. The reef also recorded over 170 species of reef fish belonging to 76 genera.

Seagrass and marine algae belonging to genera Halimeda and Caulerpa are common in the seabed depth ranging from 5–10 m. Seagrasses provide habitat to Dugong and sea turtles. Some species of prawns feed on the seagrass. Eight species of ornamental fishes also inhabit the reef, along with many vertebrates and invertebrates including crabs, prawns, shrimps, oysters and sea worms. Porites desilveri is an endemic coral species of Sri Lanka. Chlorurus rhakoura and Pomacentrus proteus are two reef fish species confined to Sri Lanka. Blacktip reef shark are found along the outer slope of the reef. Three sea turtles which have been categorized threatened visit the coral reef: the hawksbill turtle, green turtle, and Olive Ridley.

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