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The English version of our glossary is currently under construction and will be regularly updated.


Corals are small animals known as polyps, roughly resembling miniature sea cucumbers, that are capable of forming colonies. These polyps form a shared skeleton which, in some species, provides the foundation for a coral reef.

The term “coral” has various meanings but is most often the commonly used term for scleractinians, an order of stony corals that all have hard calcium carbonate skeletons, and which can be divided into reef-building and non-reef building corals, and into cold-water and warm-water corals.