Corals | Anthozoa

Corals | Anthozoa

Description
Description

Corals, belonging to the class Anthozoa, are marine invertebrates that typically live in compact colonies of many identical individual polyps. They are most commonly found in warm, shallow waters where they form coral reefs, the largest living structures on Earth, through the secretion of calcium carbonate. Existing for around 500 million years, corals have evolved into a diverse range of species. These creatures play a crucial role in their ecosystems, providing habitat and protection for a vast array of marine life. Corals also have a symbiotic relationship with zooxanthellae algae, which provide them with nutrients through photosynthesis.

Anatomy
Anatomy

Corals are unique marine organisms composed of many small creatures called polyps, which cluster together to form coral colonies. Each polyp has a simple, sac-like body with a single opening surrounded by tentacles. They use these tentacles to capture tiny organisms for food. Corals are mostly stationary, anchored to the ocean floor, but some can retract their polyps for protection. They lack conventional senses like sight or hearing, instead relying on water currents and chemical signals in their environment. Internally, they have a simple digestive system and, interestingly, corals don't have a brain but a simple nerve net for basic reflexes.

Human Interaction
Human Interaction

The symbiosis between humans and corals is profound, rooted in our reliance on coral reefs for food, coastal protection, and income through tourism and fishing. Historically, indigenous cultures revered corals for their beauty and utility, using them in jewelry and medicine. In popular culture, corals often symbolize diverse marine life, featured in films like "Finding Nemo."

Unfortunately, human activities like overfishing, pollution, and climate change threaten coral reefs globally. In response, conservation efforts have intensified, with initiatives focusing on marine protected areas, coral farming, and restoration projects to safeguard these underwater treasures for future generations.

Common Questions
Common Questions
What does coral eat?

Most corals have a symbiotic relationship with algae living in their tissues. These algae provide them with the right nourishment or energy that they generate from the sun. Still, others feed on small fish, plankton, and even cetaceans by stinging and capturing them with their long tentacles. Most corals feed at night.

How does Anthozoa reproduce?

Anthozoa can reproduce sexually or asexually. Asexual reproduction can be transverse, pedal laceration, longitudinal fission, or autotomy of tentacles. Members of this group release sperm and eggs into the water. When the egg is fertilized, it transforms into a larva, and then the last stage, which is polyps.

What gives Anthozoa its internal color?

Anthozoa has soft body tissues. To protect these soft tissues, it secretes a hard and tall nonliving substance. Algae love this substance as it offers them protection and components for photosynthesis. The algae are what gives the Anthozoa its color, which can be pink, yellow, red, and many more.

Animals

* Under Development *

27.6”-35.4” | 70-90 cm
31.5”-39.4” | 80-100 cm (Diameter)
31.5”-39.4” | 80-100 cm (Diameter)
Blue Coral
90.000
100.000
100.000
17400
GUIDE
3D
Blue Coral
9.8”-19.7” | 25-50 cm
11.8”-23.6” | 30-60 cm (Diameter)
11.8”-23.6” | 30-60 cm (Diameter)
Bubble Coral
50.000
60.000
60.000
5300
GUIDE
3D
Bubble Coral
4’-8’ | 1.22-2.43 m
11.5’-13’ | 3.5-3.96 m (Diameter)
11.5’-13’ | 3.5-3.96 m (Diameter)
Elkhorn Coral
243.000
396.000
396.000
1450
GUIDE
3D
Elkhorn Coral
5.1”-6.3” | 13-16 cm
5.9”-7.9” | 15-20 cm (Diameter)
5.9”-7.9” | 15-20 cm (Diameter)
Finger Coral
16.000
20.000
20.000
1340
GUIDE
3D
Finger Coral
7.9”-11.8” | 20-30 cm
11.8”-19.7” | 30-50 cm (Diameter)
11.8”-19.7” | 30-50 cm (Diameter)
Organ Pipe Coral
30.000
50.000
50.000
2400
GUIDE
3D
Organ Pipe Coral
3’-5’ | .91-1.52 m
3.3’- 9.8’ | 1-3 m (Diameter)
3.3’- 9.8’ | 1-3 m (Diameter)
Staghorn Coral
152.000
300.000
300.000
2500
GUIDE
3D
Staghorn Coral
Elkhorn Coral (Acropora palmata)
Dimensioned comparison drawing of the Elkhorn Coral compared to other corals and a person

The Elkhorn Coral (Acropora palmata) is a fast-growing coral easily identified by its complex branching structure composed of colonies of dense stands forming interlocking thickets. This structure makes it resemble elk antlers. It is mostly found in the Caribbean and Bahamas very close to the shoreline. As a result, it is under immense damage from human pollution and coral bleaching. The Elkhorn coral has a large body, and branches are sturdy and thick, which can be yellow to yellow-brown with white tips. This coral can reproduce sexually or asexually. It is considered a hard coral.

The Elkhorn Coral has an overall colony diameter between 11.5’-13’ (3.5-3.96 m) and typical height of 4’-8’ (1.22-2.43 m).

Set of scaled top and side view drawings of the Elkhorn Coral with dimensions
The Elkhorn Coral (Acropora palmata) is a fast-growing coral easily identified by its complex branching structure composed of colonies of dense stands forming interlocking thickets. This structure makes it resemble elk antlers. It is mostly found in the Caribbean and Bahamas very close to the shore.

The Elkhorn Coral has an overall colony diameter between 11.5’-13’ (3.5-3.96 m) and typical height of 4’-8’ (1.22-2.43 m).

Set of scaled top and side view drawings of the Elkhorn Coral with dimensions
Elkhorn Coral (Acropora palmata)
Height:
4’-8’ | 1.22-2.43 m
Width:
11.5’-13’ | 3.5-3.96 m (Diameter)
Length:
Depth:
11.5’-13’ | 3.5-3.96 m (Diameter)
Weight:
Area:
Scientific Name
Acropora palmata
Lifespan

Drawings include:

Elkhorn Coral top view, side (assorted)

Downloads

2D Downloads

3D Downloads

Blue Coral (Heliopora coerulea)
Comparison illustration of the size of a Blue Coral to other coral species and a person

On the outside, the Blue Coral (Heliopora coerulea) is brown. It is its internal skeleton that is blue, from where it derives its name. The Blue coral is a close relative to the soft coral even though it produces a hard skeleton. In fact, in the order of Helioporacea and subclass Octocorallia, it is the only species that produces a massive skeleton. This species of colonial coral is mostly found on the Southern shores. Its skeleton is composed of different calcium carbonates. Besides, there are tubes in the skeletons which have systems of canals and long, thin polyps. The polyps are white or beige and have tentacles.

The Blue Coral has an overall colony diameter between 31.5”-39.4” (80-100 cm) and typical height of 27.6”-35.4” (70-90 cm).

Scaled collection of drawings of Blue Coral in various poses
On the outside, the Blue Coral (Heliopora coerulea) is brown. It is its internal skeleton that is blue, from where it derives its name. The Blue coral is a close relative to the soft coral even though it produces a hard skeleton. It is in the order of Helioporacea and subclass Octocorallia.

The Blue Coral has an overall colony diameter between 31.5”-39.4” (80-100 cm) and typical height of 27.6”-35.4” (70-90 cm).

Scaled collection of drawings of Blue Coral in various poses
Blue Coral (Heliopora coerulea)
Height:
27.6”-35.4” | 70-90 cm
Width:
31.5”-39.4” | 80-100 cm (Diameter)
Length:
Depth:
31.5”-39.4” | 80-100 cm (Diameter)
Weight:
Area:
Scientific Name
Heliopora coerulea
Lifespan

Drawings include:

Blue Coral top view, side (assorted)

Downloads

2D Downloads

3D Downloads

Bubble Coral (Plerogyra sinuosa)
Scale illustration of an average Bubble Coral compared to other coral species and a person

In the Red Sea and even the Indo-Pacific oceanic environment, the Bubble Coral (Plerogyra sinuosa) is often seen bubbling or showing a variety of bubble sizes. During the day, the bubbles are large but small at night, leaving the coral to display long sweeping tentacles that can bite. The bubbles are translucent or have pale strips when inflated and less translucent when retracted. Other communities call it bladder coral, grape coral, pearl coral, and octobubble coral. The Bubble coral prefers moderately lit areas and can be tan, pale green, or pink.

The Bubble Coral has an overall colony diameter between 11.8”-23.6” (30-60 cm) and height of 9.8”-19.7” (25-50 cm). The diameters of the individual branches are roughly 1”-1.6” (2.5-4 cm) with individual heights between 1.6”-2.75” (4-7 cm).

Series of illustrations of the Bubble Coral from multiple views
In the Red Sea and even the Indo-Pacific oceanic environment, the Bubble Coral (Plerogyra sinuosa) is often seen bubbling or showing a variety of bubble sizes. During the day, the bubbles are large but small at night, leaving the coral to display long sweeping tentacles that can bite.

The Bubble Coral has an overall colony diameter between 11.8”-23.6” (30-60 cm) and height of 9.8”-19.7” (25-50 cm). The diameters of the individual branches are roughly 1”-1.6” (2.5-4 cm) with individual heights between 1.6”-2.75” (4-7 cm).

Series of illustrations of the Bubble Coral from multiple views
Bubble Coral (Plerogyra sinuosa)
Height:
9.8”-19.7” | 25-50 cm
Width:
11.8”-23.6” | 30-60 cm (Diameter)
Length:
Depth:
11.8”-23.6” | 30-60 cm (Diameter)
Weight:
Area:

Individual Height: 1.6”-2.75” | 4-7 cm

Individual Diameter: 1”-1.6” | 2.5-4 cm

Scientific Name
Plerogyra sinuosa
Lifespan

Drawings include:

Bubble Coral top view, side (assorted)

Downloads

2D Downloads

3D Downloads

Finger Coral (Acropora humilis)
Comparison illustration of the size of a Finger Coral to other coral species and a person

Finger Corals (Acropora humilis) are a category of soft corals that exists in several tropical shallow reefs in Indo-Pacific waters, the Red Sea, and the Gulf of Aden. In these areas, it is the most common and dominant coral species. It can be cream, purple, blue, or brown and may have blue or white tips. Finger corals have projections resembling fingers grouped in a rounded form. Their branches are thick, having one or more large and dome-shaped axial corallites. At the base of branches are small branchlets. Like most corals, it reproduces sexually and asexually.

The Finger Coral has an overall colony diameter between 5.9”-7.9” (15-20 cm) and typical height of 5.1”-6.3” (13-16 cm). The diameters of the individual branches are roughly between .4”-.6” (1-1.6 cm).

Scaled collection of drawings of Finger Coral in various poses
Finger Corals (Acropora humilis) are a category of soft corals that exists in several tropical shallow reefs in Indo-Pacific waters, the Red Sea, and the Gulf of Aden. In these areas, it is the most common and dominant coral species. It can be cream, purple, blue, or brown and may colored tips.

The Finger Coral has an overall colony diameter between 5.9”-7.9” (15-20 cm) and typical height of 5.1”-6.3” (13-16 cm). The diameters of the individual branches are roughly between .4”-.6” (1-1.6 cm).

Scaled collection of drawings of Finger Coral in various poses
Finger Coral (Acropora humilis)
Height:
5.1”-6.3” | 13-16 cm
Width:
5.9”-7.9” | 15-20 cm (Diameter)
Length:
Depth:
5.9”-7.9” | 15-20 cm (Diameter)
Weight:
Area:

Individual Diameter: .4”-.6” | 1-1.6 cm

Scientific Name
Acropora humilis
Lifespan

Drawings include:

Finger Coral top view (assorted)

Downloads

2D Downloads

3D Downloads

Organ Pipe Coral (Tubipora musica)
Scale illustration of an average Organ Pipe Coral compared to other coral species and a person

The Organ Pipe Coral (Tubipora musica) is one coral that you can see both in the sea and in the aquarium. Aquarium owners love it because of its ease of maintenance and non-stinging nature. In the wild, you will find it in the water of the Indian Ocean and also in central and western Pacific regions. These areas must be shallow and sheltered with good light conditions. It is considered a soft coral, though the bright red skeleton is hard calcium carbonate with many organic pipe-like tubes. Each tube has polyps with eight feather-like tentacles.

The Organ Pipe Coral has an overall colony diameter between 11.8”-19.7” (30-50 cm) and typical height of 7.9”-11.8” (20-30 cm).

Series of top and side view illustrations of the Organ Pipe Coral
The Organ Pipe Coral (Tubipora musica) is one coral that you can see both in the sea and in the aquarium. Aquarium owners love it because of its ease of maintenance and non-stinging nature. In the wild, you will find it in the water of the Indian Ocean and also in central and west Pacific regions.

The Organ Pipe Coral has an overall colony diameter between 11.8”-19.7” (30-50 cm) and typical height of 7.9”-11.8” (20-30 cm).

Series of top and side view illustrations of the Organ Pipe Coral
Organ Pipe Coral (Tubipora musica)
Height:
7.9”-11.8” | 20-30 cm
Width:
11.8”-19.7” | 30-50 cm (Diameter)
Length:
Depth:
11.8”-19.7” | 30-50 cm (Diameter)
Weight:
Area:
Scientific Name
Tubipora musica
Lifespan

Drawings include:

Organ Pipe Coral top view, side (assorted)

Downloads

2D Downloads

3D Downloads