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Biodiversity in the Amazon - 11/3/15

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When it comes to biodiversity, the Amazon is practically unrivaled. Spanning 6.7 million square kilometers, this South American region is twice the size of India and houses at least 10 percent of the world’s known species. Twelve hundred new species of plants and vertebrates were discovered between 1999 and 2009 alone.

Whether it’s high up in the rain forest canopy or on the cooler, dryer grounds below, the Amazon teems with life. Here to tell us more is explorer, filmmaker and diver Céline Cousteau, who has spent a total of 15 weeks over the course of three trips in this incredible place.

As chief executive officer, John Racanelli leads a team of 600 full and part-time employees and 1,000 volunteers in pursuing the National Aquarium’s mission to inspire conservation of the world’s aquatic treasures. More than 1.5 million people annually visit the Aquarium’s venue in Baltimore, Maryland, while millions more are touched by the Aquarium’s education programs, outreach activities, social media campaigns and conservation initiatives.