How long do coral live ?

The polyps of these corals live very long, and there are separate colonies, whose age is estimated at 2.5-5 thousand years. Corals are large colonies of tiny animals that grow slowly under water. Every year these colonies, or coral reefs, leave behind a layer of calcareous skeleton, which is so cruel that it almost looks like a rock.

If you looked inside the coral, you would see the annual rings very similar to the wood. Some coral branches are hundreds of years old. This means that they grew when Christopher Columbus discovered America or even earlier. Typical brain corals grow primarily in the tropics, where the water remains warm all year round.

Because of their solid structure, brain corals can live in ocean currents and strong waves. Thinner lamellar corals can survive only in sheltered lagoons or deeper water. Large, hard coral heads often serve as a “cleaning station” for certain species of animals and fish. They rub against corals removing dead skin or parasites.