Ceram Sea

Ceram Sea
Location of the Ceram Sea within Southeast Asia

The Ceram Sea or Seram Sea (Indonesian = Laut Seram) is one of several small seas between the scattered islands of Indonesia. It is a section of the Pacific Ocean with an area of approximately 12,000 square kilometers located between Buru and Seram, which are two of the islands once called the South Moluccas. These islands are the native habitat of plants long coveted for their use as spices, such as nutmeg, cloves, and black peppercorns, and the seas surrounding them were busy shipping routes. The Ceram Sea is also the habitat of several species of tropical goby and many other fish. Like many other small Indonesian seas, the Ceram Sea is rocky and very tectonically active.


The International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) defines the Ceram Sea as being one of the waters of the East Indian Archipelago. The IHO defines its limits as follows:[1]

On the North and Northeast. A line from Tanjong Dehekolano, the Eastern extreme of the Soela [Sula] Islands to the Western extreme of Obi Major, along its Southern coast to Tanjong Seranmaloleo its Eastern extreme, thence through Tobalai, Kekek, Pisang and Kofiau Islands to Tanjong Sele (1°26′S 130°55′E / 1.433°S 130.917°E / -1.433; 130.917), the Western point of New Guinea, down the coast to Karoefa (3°51.5′S 133°27′E / 3.8583°S 133.45°E / -3.8583; 133.45).

On the Southeast. A line from Karoefa, New Guinea, to the Southeastern extreme of Adi Island, thence to Tg. Borang, the Northern point of Noehoe Tjoet [Kai Besar] (5°17′S 133°09′E / 5.283°S 133.15°E / -5.283; 133.15).

On the Southwest and South. From the Northern point of Noehoe Tjoet (Groot Kai) through the Watoebela and Gorong Islands to the Southeastern extreme of Ceram, along its Northern shore to Tanjong Tandoeroe Besar, the Northwest point, thence a line to Tanjong Batoe Noeham, the Northern extreme of Boeroe [Buru], and along the coast to Tanjong Palpetoe, the Northwest point of the Island.

On the West. A line from Tanjong Palpetoe to Tanjong Waka, the Southern point of Sanana, through this island to its Northern point, thence across the Mangoli Strait to the South coast of Mangoli (Soela Islands) in [1°56′S 125°55′E / 1.933°S 125.917°E / -1.933; 125.917].

Further reading

  • Fairbridge, R. E. (1966). The Encyclopedia of Oceanography. New York: Halsted.
  • Wang, James C. F. (1992). Handbook on Ocean Politics and Law. New York: Greenwood Press.


  1. ^ "Limits of Oceans and Seas, 3rd edition". International Hydrographic Organization. 1953. http://www.iho-ohi.net/iho_pubs/standard/S-23/S23_1953.pdf. Retrieved 7 February 2010. 

Coordinates: 2°20′S 128°00′E / 2.333°S 128°E / -2.333; 128

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