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 Escharoides coccinea forms reddish-orange encrusting colonies of many individuals (zooids) that are separated from each other by a deep groove. Individual zooids are quadrangular in shape with a convex-shaped upper surface. The upper surface has a broad opening (orifice) that is sealed by an operculum and marked by a wide shelf inside the outer rim and distinct tooth-like projections on the inner rim. The side of the orifice facing the edge of the colony bears an arc of 6, long, tubular spines, although these are absent from fertile zooids that house globular-shaped ovicells encasing red coloured embryos instead. The sides of the individual zooids are calcified with irregular nodules and marked along the edges by large pores. On either side of the orifice is a smaller, pointed, avicularia that extends outwards away from the main zooid.Individuals colonies of Escharoides coccinea have a life span of at least 2 years.


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©  The Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom

Source: Marine Life Information Network

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