Coral Skeletons

Les Kaufman lesk at
Thu Jan 13 07:38:47 EST 2000

Protozoan recruitment (Folliculina) can turn white coral skeletons gray in
a few days.  If you look closely it's really tiny black dots, not grey.
As algae come in the ciliate drops out but by then the skeleton is really
gray.  That's on Acropora in Caribbean (obviously old observations).

For A. cytherea in Pacific, about five days till pretty scuzzy and already
looking no longer bright white.  That in an area with fairly heavy grazing
pressure, I'd guess.

You need to make your own local observations to be sure.  But they won't
take long.

Les Kaufman
Boston University Marine Program
Department of Biology
5 Cummington Street
Boston, MA 02215
lesk at
617-353-5560 office
617-353-6965 lab
617-353-6340 fax

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