Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Intra-tentacular budding

Synonyms: Fission

Intra-tentacular budding occurs within a coral colony where a parent corallite splits into two daughter corallites.  This split occurs within the corallite wall; a section of wall builds up in the middle of the existing corallite producing the new individuals.  The location of this new section of wall can aid in coral identification; for example uneven sized daughter corallites are characteristic of the genus Favites, whereas evenly sized daughter corallites may be found in Favia

(photo of favia and favites with even and uneven splits)

Coral colonies grow and expand by an asexual process known as budding. Intra-tentacular budding occurs when a parent corallite splits into two daughter corallites within the corallite wall.

The budding state is used to help separate two similar looking genera. Favia (left) is dominated by intra-tentacular budding and Montastrea (right) is dominated by extra-tentacular budding.

Corals with corallites that share walls (e.g. Favites, p.14 of the Coral Finder) or have separate walls (e.g. Favia, p.11 of the Coral Finder), may reproduce in this manner.

(photo of Favites and Favia)