Solitary Deep-water Corals

These corals from the Smithsonian collections are Stephanocyathus (A.) spiniger, a solitary, deep-water stony coral species. Around 74% of all deep-water corals are solitary, living as individual organisms instead of forming large colonies like most shallow-water corals. This one has six long spines that slow it from sinking into soft substrates.


Smithsonian Institution