September 22, 2014, 8:12 am

lophelia.org logo

 

Biodiversity

Cold-water coral reefs provide a home for many other animals and they are among the most diverse ecosystems in the ocean – more than 1300 species have been found living amongst cold-water corals in the NE Atlantic alone, and specialists often discover new species that have never been described before.

Here we look at a few examples of some animals commonly found living among cold-water corals. Click the images below for more information and follow the Go Deeper links for more pictures:

Sponges (Porifera) Corals, anemones, zoanthids, hydroids (Cnidaria) Bristleworms (Polychaeta)
Glass sponge Credit AWI & Ifremer 2003 A sea anemone (Urticina eques), North Sea. © Lundin Petroleum Ltd (2002). Nothria conchylega © L. Henry, SAMS (2005)
Crabs and other crustaceans (Arthropoda) Snails, bivalves, octopus, nudibranchs, limpets (Mollusca) Sea mats
(Bryozoa)
Natatolana borealis © L. Henry, SAMS (2005) Delectopecten vitreus © L. Henry, SAMS (2005) Bicellariella ciliata © L. Henry, SAMS (2005)
Urchins, sea cucumbers, sea stars (Echinodermata)
Marginaster capreensis © L. Henry, SAMS (2005)