Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
Marine Botany

coralline crustcoralline crustcoralline crustcoralline crustcoralline crust

Nongeniculate coralline

Photos: Habitats

On coral reefs, corallines play a significant role cementing the reef together. This picture shows the pink crustose corallines with a cuttlefish swimming overhead trying to match the color of the algae. 

 

 

 

 

Epiphytic corallines: Melobesia mediocris on Phyllospadix is the light pink algae. The darker purple algae is noncoralline epiphytic red called Smithora.

surf grass

Close up of the epiphytes on Phyllospadix. (Pink is Melobesia and purple is Smithora)

Phyllospadix blade

Corallines as an undergrowth layer with other algae growing above it.corallines and other red algae

Saxicolous corallines in the intertidal zone. Also note the snails crawling over the corallines

snails on corallines

Dominant in the intertidal zone, corallines can often cover every surface available.

intertidal rocks

In the aquarium, corallines are very successful. Here they have taken over the window sill of the exhibit as well.

aquarium photo

(picture courtesy of I. Ehrenreich) 

There is crust growing on the rock as well as on the snail (epizoic).coralline on snail shell 

 (picture courtesy of I. Ehrenreich) 

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© 2001 Melissa Roth