Pisonia grandis Grand Devil’s Claws. One of the largest plants growing on the Coral Sea islands. Once a year, the trees produce large quantities of sticky seeds, that clog up birds’ feathers, causing death. It is speculated that this in some way helps the tree secure the nutrients necessary for its next generation. There are only 26 plant species from the Coral Sea, of which all but five are native and the rest naturalised.
One of the ways the islands are used by animals is as a nesting site for Green Turtles. These large sea turtles can live to eighty in the wild, and they are found throughout tropical regions around the world, in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. The turtles will migrate long distances to nest. When this occurs, female turtles will crawl from the ocean up onto the beaches at night and dig nests in the sand. They lay their eggs there and burry them. Once the baby turtles have hatched, they make the return journey at night, crossing the beach and heading back into the ocean.
The Coral Sea Islands are an uninhabited group located in the Coral Sea between the northern coast of Australia and the southern coast of New Guinea. Great Britain laid claim to the islands early in the nineteenth century, but after World War 1 Australia assumed jurisdiction over them. In 1969 they were formally incorporated into Australia as the Coral Sea Islands Territory.
Scattered over more than three-quarters of a million square kilometers of ocean, the Coral Sea Islands were declared a territory of Australia in 1969. They are uninhabited except for a small meteorological staff on the Willis Islets. Automated weather stations, beacons, and a lighthouse occupy many other islands and reefs
The Coral Sea Islands were declared to be a Territory of the Commonwealth of Australia by the Coral Sea Islands Act 1969. The scattered reefs and islands, often little more than sandbanks, spread over a sea area of about 1 million square kilometers with only a few square kilometers of actual land area, between the Great Barrier Reef, latitude 12 degrees S and longitude 157 degrees 10' E.
The territory is a possession of Australia, administered from Canberra by the Attorney-General's Department (before 29 November 2007 administration was carried out by the Department of Transport and Regional Services). Defence is the responsibility of Australia, and the territory is visited regularly by the Royal Australian Navy. Australia maintains automatic weather stations on many of the isles and reefs, and claims a 200 nautical mile (370 km) exclusive fishing zone. There is no economic activity (except for a significant but as yet unquantified charter fishing and diving industry), and only a staff of three or four people to run the meteorological station on Willis Island (South Islet), established in 1921.
The islands, or cays, are formed largely of coral and sand and some have a cover of grassy or scrub-type vegetation. Large populations of sea birds nest and breed in the area.
The Coral Sea Islands are a territory of Australia and perhaps the only home of a marine fish, the Tiger Blenny Ecsenius tigris (eol) as well as Sally's Eviota Eviota readerae (p. 5 of Australian Museum pdf file), the Coral Sea Sailfin Anthias Rabaulichthys squirei (Reef Builders), a wrasse Pseudocoris aequalis (FishBase), and the Elizabeth Reef Jawfish Opistognathus elizabethensis.
Coral Sea Islands, external territory of Australia, comprising scattered small islands and reefs spread over c.400,000 sq mi (1,035,995 sq km) of the South Pacific Ocean, E of the Great Barrier Reef, off NE Australia. The islands, uninhabited except for a meteorological station on the Willis Islets, became a territory in 1969.
Spread over a sea area of approximately 780,000 sq km (300,000 sq miles), all the islands and reefs in the Territory are very small, totaling only a few sq km of land area. They include Cato Island, Chilcott Islet in the Coringa Group, and the Willis Group.