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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Headline for Types of Corals in Maldives – Be Enthralled by the Dazzling Colours
Joanna James Joanna James
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Types of Corals in Maldives – Be Enthralled by the Dazzling Colours

Coral reefs in Maldives support large numbers of marine organisms and local life. It is also part of the nation's livelihood and a well-guarded natural treasure that's diverse, beautiful and exotic.


The Coral Reefs

Absolutely stunning and beautiful the coral reefs are in essence the life source of the Maldivian archipelago. Not only do they harbour a variety of marine life the coral once it dies is the base from which other little islets are formed. No coral, no islands, is the policy many in the Maldives have adopted in order to safeguard the nation's most precious asset. Corals mind you are animals; not plants. Some may sting when touched as this is the only way the coral can ensnare small fish for digestion. Take a microscopic view of coral and you will see the intricate structure that defines the animals from plants they so much resemble.


Brain Coral

Brain coral is easy to identify and spot as they grow up to 6 feet in size. The life span of an average Brain coral is measured at 900 years. Diving during the day will leave you with images of docile and unmoving coral but a night dive will show you extended tentacles that assist the coral in feeding.


Cup Coral

Emulating the name cup coral does resemble a cup; they vary in sizes; there are larger sized cup corals ranging around 10 inches and others that are much smaller.


Staghorn Coral

Staghorn coral is known to propagate very fast. There is no hard and fast rule about where to find these as they may grow on the surface of a coral reef or right at the bottom of the seabed at depths of 30 feet. Staghorn do not have much defence against stormy weather but since they re-grow very fast, manage to keep up the numbers. In fact, this coral type was one of the fastest to recover from the devastating bleaching effect caused during the 1998 El Nino effect. If you want to know more about coral conservation or even start your very own patch of coral you may be interested in Coral Adoption Programmes as offered by selective Maldives resorts such as Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas.


Whip Coral

Whip Coral are so named since they resemble a rope that is attached to the seabed; although they are quite stiff, unlike a rope. These can be spotted at greater depths and are favourite hiding grounds for shrimp, Xeno crab and little Goby's; all of which are tipped to be masters of disguise.


Star Coral

In the Maldives star coral are a phenomenal sight; they are in fact boulders that are covered in these star shaped coral that are a beautiful myriad of colours. It is one of the most stunning aspects of a Maldives coral reef.


Sea Fans

Called Gorgonians or Sea Fans these coral types grow upwards and spread out; resembling a lady's fan. Many divers prefer to examine the intricate detail of the coral on a closer range which should be done taking extreme care not to damage the delicate coral with your fins.

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