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The Philippine Sea
The Philippine Sea is a marginal sea east and north of the Philippinesmarker occupying an estimated surface area of 2 Million mi² (5 Million km²) on the western part of the North Pacific Oceanmarker. It is bordered by the Philippine archipelagomarker (Luzonmarker, Samarmarker, Leyte and Mindanaomarker) on the southwest; Palaumarker, Yapmarker, and Ulithimarker (of the Carolinesmarker) on the southeast; the Marianasmarker, including Guammarker, Saipanmarker, and Tinianmarker, on the east; the Boninmarker and Iwo Jimamarker on the northeast; the Japanese islands of Honshumarker, Shikokumarker, and Kyūshūmarker on the north; the Ryukyu Islandsmarker (Okinawamarker, Miyakomarker, and Yaeyamamarker) on the northwest; and Taiwanmarker in the extreme west.

The sea has a complex and diverse undersea relief. The floor is formed into a structural basin by a series of geologic faults and fracture zones. Island arcs, which are actually extended ridges protruding above the ocean surface due to plate tectonic activity in the area, enclose the Philippine Sea to the north, east and south. The Philippine archipelagomarker, Ryuku Islandsmarker, and the Marianasmarker are examples. Another prominent feature of the Philippine Sea is the presence of deep sea trench, among them the Philippine Trench and the Mariana Trenchmarker, containing the deepest point on the planet.



The Philippine Sea is bordered by the Philippinesmarker and Taiwanmarker to the west, Japanmarker to the north, the Marianasmarker to the east and Palaumarker to the south. Adjacent seas include Celebes Seamarker which is separated by Mindanaomarker and smaller islands to the south, South China Seamarker which is separated by Philippinesmarker, and East China Seamarker which is separated by Ryukyu Islandsmarker.


The Philippine Sea Platemarker forms the floor of this sea and it subducts under the Philippine Mobile Belt which carries most of the Philippine archipelago and eastern Taiwanmarker. Between the two plates is the Philippine Trench.


The Philippine Sea hosts an exotic marine ecosystem. About five hundred species of hard and soft corals occur in the coastal waters and 20 per cent of the worldwide known shellfish species are found in Philippine waters. Sea turtles, sharks, moray eels, octopuses and sea snakes along with numerous species of fish such as tuna can commonly be observed. Additionally, the Philippine Sea serves as spawning ground for Japanese eel, tuna and different whale species.


In June 1944 the Battle of the Philippine Sea, a very large and decisive World War II naval battle between Japanmarker and the United Statesmarker, took place in the eastern Philippine Sea, near the Mariana Islands.


  2. North Pacific Ocean

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