Coral Reef Fascinating Facts

//Coral Reef Fascinating Facts

Coral Reef Fascinating Facts

  • Corals are ancient and simple animals related to jellyfish and anemones of the Phylum Cnideria.
  • An individual coral is made up of hundreds and thousands of genetically identical polyps forming a colony.
  • A polyp is a very small and simple organism, it consists a simple stomach topped by a tentacle-bearing mouth.
  • The polyps extend their tentacles to sting and ingest tiny organisms called plankton and other small creatures that become trapped in their grasp.
  • In the case of hard corals; each polyp excretes a calcium carbonate exoskeleton beneath it, this over long periods of time add up to build the structure of a coral reef.
  • Many other species – fish, invertebrates, algae and microorganisms – make their homes on and around the coral reef system.
  • Coral reefs are some of the most diverse ecosystems in the world.
  • About one-third of all marine fish species live part of their lives on coral reefs.
  • Coral reefs contain 25% of the world’s marine fish species.
  • Reefs are where many fish and sea creatures choose to spawn. The protection of the reef means eggs will be safe from predators.
  • Coral reefs are second only to rainforests in biodiversity of species.
  • Reefs only occur in shallow areas that are reachable by sunlight, this is due to the symbiotic relationship between coral and algae.
  • Various types of microscopic algae, known as Symbiodinium, live inside of the coral, providing them with food and helping them to grow faster. In many ways, reef-building corals are animals that act like plants – they stay in one place and get some of their energy from the sun.
  • Coral reefs are found all around the world in tropical and subtropical oceans
  • They are usually found in shallow areas at a depth of less than 50m. However, some coral reefs extend even deeper, up to about 130m deep
  • Coral reefs protect coastlines from storms
  • They provide billions of dollars worth of food and jobs every year to people around the world.
  • Despite how important coral reefs are to life in the ocean, all of them in the world add up to less than one percent of the sea floor – an area about the size of France.
  • Coral reefs also help to improve the surrounding water quality. They act as a kind of filter that traps things floating in the water, which makes for cleaner water all around.
  • Scientists have discovered that many parts of a coral reef can be harvested to make medications to treat cancers and other illnesses.
By | 2017-05-29T14:16:56+00:00 April 7th, 2017|Coral reef conservation|0 Comments

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