From the field to the laboratory

Ögonkorall fastsatt mot betongblock.
Ögonkoraller fixerad på betongfästen.

In January colonies of Lophelia pertusa were collected at the Tisler reef in Norway. To collect the coral samples at a depth of 120 meters we used a ROV (remote underwater vehicle) equipped with a net basket. With this tool we were able to break of fractions of different colonies and bring them up to the surface. Onboard they were kept in seawater for the transport back to the Tjärnö Marine Laboratory. Here, the samples were checked if they were female or male by looking at the reproductive structures inside the polyp. After checking each sample, fragments were fixed with epoxy putty (coral cement) to concrete mounts. Getting the corals into an upright position and giving them a good water flow makes them feel at home. Now our coral garden is ready for spawning season.