Medha IAS

ZSI discovers Four Species of Azooxanthellate Corals in Indian Waters

Scientists from the Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) have discovered four species of azooxanthellate Corals in the waters of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

  • These corals have been found for the first time from Indian waters.
  • All the four groups of corals are from the same family Flabellidae.

About Azooxanthellate Corals

  • Azooxanthellate corals are a group of corals that do not contain zooxanthellae and derive nourishment not from the sun but from capturing different forms of plankton.
  • They are non-reef building, solitary corals.
  • Azooxanthellate corals are a group of hard corals and the four new records are not only solitary but have a highly compressed skeletal structure.
  • These groups of corals are deep-sea representatives, with the majority of species reporting from between 200 m to 1000 m. Their occurrences are also reported from shallow coastal waters.
  • Zooxanthellate corals, meanwhile, are restricted to shallow waters.