What Corals Look Like

Table of contents:

What Corals Look Like
What Corals Look Like

Video: What Corals Look Like

Video: What Corals Look Like
Video: What Exactly Is Coral? 2023, March

Huge formations can be found in the ocean. The builders of such structures are coral polyps: small, the size of a pin head, sea inhabitants. Such polyps have a very soft and delicate body, protecting which, they build shells around themselves. One polyp with a calyx is attached to another polyp, and so on. As a result of such connections, we can observe coral reefs.

What corals look like
What corals look like


Step 1

Basically, coral is limestone. It has bizarre, rarely repetitive shapes. For a long time it was believed that coral must necessarily look like a twig or a leaf, but the study of the underwater world has shown a variety of forms. However, the tree-like form is really the most common: hundreds of branches with rounded or sharp shapes seem to grow on a thick stem.

Step 2

The color of a coral depends on the depth of its growth and the presence of organic materials in the composition. More than 200 corals are known and described, many of which are used by jewelers. The most valuable are black corals and bright red. They are rich in acobar, an organic substance with an active pigment. Corals always have a matte hue, shiny corals simply do not exist, although there are variants that have something like mirror-like inclusions - these are salts or grains of sand, "sticking" to the limestone, reflecting light.

Step 3

Most of the corals are certainly beautiful. Some can be compared to flowers or even cacti, but some can hardly be called mold otherwise. In the dark depths, limestone decomposes, and then the color of the corals usually becomes dull green, and the texture is soft, because of which the form quickly collapses, turning into a shapeless mass.

Step 4

Usually corals gather in reefs, with each coral outgrowth of this reef closely adjacent to another, intertwining and gathering in bizarre marine patterns. From a distance, the reef looks like a monolith, but the fish scurrying about in it make it clear that there are a lot of passages inside. The height of the reef can reach hundreds of meters.

Step 5

You can compare a coral reef with a land forest, but the beauty of the underwater structures is also striking in its tranquility. Reef colonies are somewhat reminiscent of spruce forests, but only these "spruce" have strange shades: corals are found in red, yellow, emerald, brown. However, reefs can resemble giant mushrooms, unusual bowls, and original abstract structures.

Step 6

For a coral reef to appear, it is not only polyps that are needed, it is important that they take refuge in certain conditions. So, the water should have normal salinity, so during the rainy season, when the water is diluted, corals die. The death of corals entails unpleasant consequences for many inhabitants of the ocean, firstly, various species of fish live in the reefs - they lose their refuge. Secondly, after death, coral tissue decomposes, which spoils the water, worsening the living conditions for other inhabitants of the sea or ocean.

Step 7

For the growth and development of corals, warmth is important, therefore reefs are found only in the tropical parts of the seas and oceans. Transparent water allows the sun's rays to pass through better, therefore purity of water is also needed. Of course, coral polyps need food, they eat plankton, so reefs grow where there is a lot of plankton.

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