Amid an assortment of white
Sponges, red Foraminifera (?) and other marine invertebrates, we found
this unusual Galápagos deep-water Soft Coral in white and brown.
* This marine habitat occurred in a protected niche among boulders, in the clear, deeper waters off Isla Champion. This niche was maybe 10 meters deeper than the abundant mounds of hermatypic reef-building coral (Pavona gigantea ? ) (1) passed on the descent. We were able to find in the area only two colonies of the above soft coral.
At this perspective of the habitat, a white encrusting sponge is located at the upper right. Toward the right center, a white organism appears to drip downward. A close examination leads one to believe that this may not be a sponge. Perhaps a Bryzoan ? At the lower left is what we believe to be red tests of Foraminifera, occurring among several unidentified marine organisms. A different view of this unique habitat is given in the next image.
Isla Champion, Islas Galápagos, Ecuador - Depth 100 feet or 30 meters