Dead lophelia (Lophelia pertusa)Photo Credit: NOAA
Description: As Lophelia coral (#10 on the poster) grows and ages the lower branches often die. This is a natural process and does not necessarily mean the reefs are in trouble, but the ecology of Lophelia pertusa is not well understood. This dead framework forms a foundation for large reef structures and provides a home for other corals and sponges and hiding places for various animals.
Figure 1: Relative probability of occurrence of Dead lophelia (Lophelia pertusa) based on computer generated distribution maps. Data source: AquamapsDepth Profile
Figure 2: Approximate depth range of Dead lophelia (black box). Slope of seafloor is a generalized representation of the Gulf of Mexico shelf and outer continental shelf.