The Reef Queens present:
What is a nanoreef?
What is a coral reef? What is coral?
Coral reefs are massive structures that provide shelter for marine life. As one of the largest and most complex ecosystems on the planet, coral reefs are home to approximately 25% of the ocean's species. To imagine a coral reef, think of it as a bustling community, a city of the sea, with the buildings made of corals, and thousand of inhabitants coming and going, carrying out their business.
Corals look like a plant or a rock but they are actually composed of tiny, fragile animals called polyps. There are two types of coral- hard corals and soft corals. Hard corals or reef-building corals are hard as rock. Their skeletons are made out of various carbonates. Most hard corals need zooxanthellae (any of various yellow-green algae that live symbiotically within the cells of other organisms) for survival. Soft corals are non-reef builing corals. Soft corals can be found both in tropical seas and in cool, dark water.
Why should we care about coral reefs?
According to the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration): Coral reefs are important to our future.
To help understand and study the basics of corals and coral reefs- we are making a nanoreef. Click here to see a live webcam of our nanoreef.
|Thanks to oc-creative.com for the pictures|