[Coral-List] Gorgonian sea fan ID

Walter Goldberg goldberg at fiu.edu
Thu Jun 14 13:38:30 EDT 2012

Joe, The distinction as you suggest is that Gorgonia flabellum is typically flattened at right angles perpendicular to the long axis of the fan, whereas G. ventalina is more compressed. That said, the G. flabellum fan may exhibit a more flattened appearance in different areas of its distribution. When the eyeball method fails, spicules and statistics are all that remain.
Walter M. Goldberg, Ph.D.
Professor of Biological Sciences
Chair, Biological Sciences Honors Program
Florida International University
University Park Campus
Miami, FL 33199
email goldberg at fiu.edu


Subject: Coral-List Digest, Vol 46, Issue 16

Message: 2
Date: Thu, 14 Jun 2012 02:55:05 +0100 (BST)
From: Joseph Marlow <joemarlow_2000 at yahoo.co.uk>
Subject: [Coral-List] Gorgonian Sea Fan Identification
To: "coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov" <coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov>
        <1339638905.68146.YahooMailNeo at web29601.mail.ird.yahoo.com>
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Dear Coral Listers

I'm a MSc student studying the Aspergillosis?disease in Gorgonian sea fans in the Cayman Islands. I'm having a lot of difficulty distinguishing between G. ventalina and G. flabellum, I know there is a difference in the branch structure but am unable to identify this difference underwater. I wander if anybody has any handy tips for aiding the identification of the two species?

Thanks and regards

Joe Marlow??

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