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Branching Fire Coral Video Stock Footage

The morphology of Millepora alcicornis is very variable. Most colonies probably start as encrusting forms and adopt a branching structure as they grow. The encrustations can become established on a variety of structures, not only on coral reefs and rocks but also on dead corals and the hulls of wrecked ships. Later development is in the form of plates or blades in habitats with much water movement such as the surf-pounded outer edges of reefs. In calmer waters, such as in deep lagoons or more sheltered parts of the reef, a more upright, leafy or branched structure develops which can grow to 50 centimetres (20 in) tall. The habit of growth is also influenced by the inclination of the surface on which the fire coral grows. On vertical surfaces, the encrusting bases are larger with longer perimeters and the density of branching is lower than it is on horizontal surfaces. The cylindrical branches usually grow in a single plane and span a range of hues from brown to pale, cream-like yellow, while branch tips are white. Learn more about Branching Fire Coral

View related species in family group: Coral and Sea Whip

Animalia: Cnidaria: Anthoathecata: Hydrozoa: Milleporidae: Millepora alcicornis

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