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Flowers of the Reef: Beautiful Corals


We need a sunny-sounding story to cheer us all up today, so how about we have a look at some of the most beautiful tropical areas of the world?

Coral reefs are synonymous with tropical paradises -- and they have a wonderful visual kinship with flowers. David Attenborough himself wrote of diving through corals that "There is nothing on land that can prepare you for the profusion of shapes and colors of the corals themselves. There are domes, branches and fans, antlers delicately tipped with blue, organ pipes that are blood red. Some seem flower-like yet when you touch them they have the incongruous scratch of stone."

And just this week, scientists who have finally discovered why a soft coral called Heteroxenia pulsates in its unique fashion described it as looking like "a small bunch of flowers", with each of the unique polyps that make up the coral seeming like one individual "flower"

So having established the links between flowers on land and these astonishing flowers of the tropical sea, why not bask in some vicarious sunshine as you enjoy the sights and sounds of a gorgeous coral reef?

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