According to COUNTRYAAH, Palau’s island world is largely surrounded by an elongated coral reef, and many of the islands are also coral islands. However, the largest island, Babelthuap, has bedrock formed by volcanism and reaches up to more than 200 m above sea level. Palau’s highest peak is on the island of Babelthuap, reaching 242 meters above sea level.
The climate is tropical with an average temperature during the year of 27 °C. The rainfall, which largely falls by the middle of the year, amounts to 3,800 mm per year on Koror. Despite the natural stability that dense vegetation, laterite soils and earthy soils have given to the landscape, it is still severely eroded by the many watercourses.
Plant life is characterized mainly by mangrove forests at the beaches. Further afield on the islands are forests with, among other things. ebony tree. Ten of the 45 breeding bird species do not occur naturally outside Palau. Delta crocodile is quite common in the mangrove swamp. The coral reef has an exceptionally rich wildlife with, among other things, many kinds of coral animals, fish, barbed skin, jellyfish and octopus.
The Ngerukeuid Islands Nature Reserve (12 km2) is the country’s only major nature protected area.
The central Palau Islands are close together, most of them within the same coral reef. The archipelago extends approx. 200 km from north to south and includes the islands of Babeldaob (409 km 2), Koror (8 km 2), Peleliu (13 km 2) and Angaur, all of volcanic origin, as well as the atolls Kayangel and Ngeruangel and the over 200 small limestone islands of the Rock Islands south of Koror. To Palau also belong South-West Islands consisting of six small, isolated islands 600 km southwest of the main group. The highest point is at Koror (630 meters above sea level).
According to BRIDGAT, the climate is tropical, with small temperature variations between seasons. Tropical hurricanes are frequent and can cause major devastation. Annual rainfall approx. 4000 mm.
Plant and wildlife in Palau
Palau has Micronesia’s richest animal and plant life. The islands are fertile, with mangrove forests and coconut trees along the coast and rainforest within. More than 50 bird species breed on Palau and 10 of these are native (endemic). Another 90 have been observed on the move or as rare guests. The magnificent palau pigeon – or biib – is very numerous and is considered the national bird of the eyes. The Palau owl is rescued from extinction (four known pairs in 1945) and occurs in significant numbers. Of the many seabirds, there may be mentioned small tropical bird, brown owl, red-footed owl, large frigate bird, soot, bridle and silk nets and black and brown noddy. Delta crocodile (local stock of about 150 animals) and the sea cow dugong (only stock in Micronesia) occurs in the waters around the islands. Coral reefs, including the famous Blue Corner, has more than 700 species of coral and 1400 species of fish. Here also lives the world’s largest clam (Tridacna gigas), which can weigh over 100 kg and be more than 1 meter long.