Red cauliflower coral (Dendronepthya sp.)

Red cauliflower coral (Dendronepthya sp.)

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Caption: Red cauliflower coral. Close-up of part of a red cauliflower coral (Dendronepthya sp.). The orange fronds seen here are the tiny tentacles of the individual coral organisms. These tentacles filter plankton from the water and pass them to the organism's mouth. This is a soft coral, which differs from a hard coral in that the coral organisms do not produce a calcium-rich rocky protective layer. Coral reefs form the basis of extensive and diverse marine ecosystems, providing shelter and food for a vast array of life. Photographed at Dhiffushi, in the Maldive Islands.

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Keywords: animal, cauliflower coral, coelenterate, coral, dendronepthya sp., invertebrate, invertebrates, nature, red, red cauliflower, red cauliflower coral, soft, soft coral, wildlife, zoology

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