If diving the “Big Mushroom” coral off Taiwan’s coast was on your bucket list, Typhoon Meranti, which struck the island nation last week, may have dashed that dream.
Local divers are saying the 33-foot/10-meter-high pore coral near Green Island off Taiwan’s east coast was toppled by the strength of the storm, which was the strongest to hit the area in 21 years.
The thousand-plus-year-old coral had been growing since the Song Dynasty.
Chuang Hui-fang, an official with Taiwan’s East Coast National Scenic Area Administration, said of the coral’s toppling:
“We were shocked to hear the news. It is a great pity. The magnitude of typhoons is getting bigger than before. It seems these unusual weather phenomenon are becoming increasingly common.”
The Big Mushroom was one of Sport Diver Magazine‘s “Top 20 Iconic Dives” for the Asia-Pacific region.