World heritage body Unesco has removed the Belize Barrier Reef from its list of endangered World Heritage Sites. The UN led body said Belize’s government had taken “visionary” steps to preserve it. The reef is the second largest in the world after Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. It is home to many threatened species including marine turtles, manatees and the American marine crocodile. Unesco added the reef to its list of world heritage sites in 1996 but said it was in danger in 2009 following plans by the Belize government to allow oil exploration in nearby waters.