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Acropora palmata
Written by Tim Wijgerde   

 Acropora palmata (Lamarck, 1816)

Kingdom: Animalia 

Phylum: Cnidaria

Class: Anthozoa

Subclass: Hexacoralli

Order: Scleractinia

Family: Acroporidae

Genus: Acropora

Species: palmata


Swimming larvae of Acropora palmata (Staghorn Coral), an endangered Caribbean coral species. Coral larvae swim by beating cilia, which allows them to move around at about 2 mm per second. The oral end, which is where the mouth develops, is located at the posterior side of the larva.

These larvae have been acquired by fertilizing eggs and sperm, captured on the reef by SECORE-divers in August 2008. These larvae are subsequently transported to zoos and public aquaria all over the world, and will grow out to new colonies after settlement.


Dr. Iliana Baums