The role of autotrophic nutrition in the production of coral planula was investigated in two field experiments carried out in Eilat, the Red Sea during 1980 and 1981, on the branching coral, Stylophora pistillata. Photosynthetically fixed carbon in coral tissue significantly decreased during planulation compared to the non-reproductive season. Planula-larvae collected 1 to 7 mo after coral tissue was labelled with 14C contained significant amounts of 14C-labelled photosynthates. The results provide the first direct evidence that energy requirements for planula production in a hermatypic coral are supported by translocation of products from algal photosynthesis. It is suggested that this is also the case in other hermatypic species.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Aquatic Science