theartfulgene: Venus fans (Gorgonia flabellum)…


Venus fans (Gorgonia flabellum) are sessile soft corals found in shallow tropical water. While it may look just like some sort of a rudimentary leaf structure, it actually is a home for a diverse forms of life. Like most corals, venus fans form symbiotic relationships with algae that can perform photosynthesis and provide the corals with a source of organic food. In addition, tiny polyps live inside the fan that filter feed for the plankton that comes around. 

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