The Sargasso Sea is named for the Sargassum seaweed that creates its unique ecosystem. The Sea has been called a golden floating rainforest.
It is a haven of biodiversity and there is growing recognition of the crucial role it plays in the wider North Atlantic ecosystem as habitat, foraging and spawning grounds and as a migratory corridor. Endangered European and American eels migrate to the Sargasso to breed. Wahoo, tuna and other pelagic fish forage in and migrate through the Sea, as do a number of whale species, notably sperm whales and humpbacks.
The Sargasso Sea supports a range of endemic species and plays a critical role in supporting the life cycle of a number of threatened and endangered species such as the Porbeagle shark, the American and the European eel, as well as billfish, tuna and several species of turtle, migratory birds and cetaceans.The Sargassum mats are home to many endemic species and provide a protective ‘nursery’ for juvenile fish and turtles.
There is emerging recognition of the crucial role it plays in the wider ecosystem ranging from the Atlantic to the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico.