favinna

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Pillar Coral (Dendrogyra cylindricus)

…a species of hard coral that is found in the western Atlantic ocean and the Caribbean sea. Pillar corals are usually found in warmer waters and grow on level or slightly sloping parts of the reef. Pillar corals are zooxanthellates, meaning they have symbiotic dinoflagellates living within their tissue. The dinoflagellates will photosynthesize and feed the coral, in turn the dinoflagellates benefit off of the coral’s nitrogenous wastes. Like other hard corals pillar coral colonies slow-growing and long-lived species 

Phylogeny

Cnidaria-Anthozoa-Scleractina-Faviina-Meandrinidae-Dendrogyra-D.cylindricus

Images: Agami and Harold Hudson