Age of black coral (Antipathes dendrochristos) colonies, with notes on associated invertebrate species
In 2005, a dead 2.1-m high colony of the Christmas tree black coral, Antipathes dendrochristos Opresko, 2005, was collected from 106 m of water off southern California. Based on growth increment counts, a radiocarbon (14C) analysis, and an indirect corroboration by lead-210 dating from a second, live colony, the colony was about 140 yrs old when it died. The dead skeleton was heavily colonized by invertebrates with 2554 individuals living on the colony. Corophioid amphipods, sea anemones, brittle stars, and crinoids dominated this assemblage. Thus, along with living colonies, it is arguable that the destruction of dead antipatharian colonies may have as yet unknown effects on a range of deep-water organisms.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 01 March 2007
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