Cnidaria Part 3: Corals

Skeptical Squirrel

Just a short introduction to corals today, I am heading off on a field trip this afternoon, so writing this just before I leave.  As it is a botany field trip, I may be blogging about plants as well as animals over the next few days.

Corals are in the same class as Sea Anemones, so Anthozoa (plant-animals), in the phylum Cnidaria.   We are all familiar with them from images such as the ones below

When I first saw corals, I thought they were rock formations on the sea floor, and indeed, some of them are very sharp, due to the Aragonite (calcium carbonate) they are made of (calcium carbonate is commonly found as chalk, or limestone, or limescale in the kettle, and can have different hardness depending on the way the crystals in the rock form).  Later, when I heard they were living, I assumed they must be…

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