Over the past few years, we’ve been hearing and reading about how corals in the Mediterranean Sea are dying off due to human activities and global warming.

Every once in a while, though, scientists discover little pockets of corals that appear unblemished by those effects.

One such example is a 3,000-square-foot/279-square-meter underwater cave off the French coast, where researchers found a pristine Mediterranean red coral garden, according to National Geographic.

While the cave was discovered seven years ago, the scientists’ findings were published this week.

Marine biologist Joaquim Garrabou says:

“During my twenty-five years as a marine biologist, I’ve never seen something like this.”

To learn more, check out the photos on National Geographic’s website at nationalgeographic.com.

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