Tabulata

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(added taxonomy)
(added section on morphology)
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The larger tabulates were important reef-builders, being found in association with [[Stromatoporoidea|stromatoporoids]]. Some species, like the well known ''[[Favosites]]'', form mound-like colonies, but there are also sheet-like, branching, and chain-like forms.
The larger tabulates were important reef-builders, being found in association with [[Stromatoporoidea|stromatoporoids]]. Some species, like the well known ''[[Favosites]]'', form mound-like colonies, but there are also sheet-like, branching, and chain-like forms.
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==Morphology==
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Skeletons are of fibrous CaCO3, as with the [[Rugosa]] and [[Scleractinia]], not spiculate as in the [[Octocorallia]]. It is therefore logical to united the Tabulata with the Rugosa and Scleractinia, along with the [[Heterocorallia]], even without hexamerous bilateral symmetry.
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Tabulata are exclusiveley colonial, the complete colony being the corallum build up of individual corallites produced by individual polyps, some of which were essentially microscopic. Corallites, skeletal elements, are long narrow tubes crossed semi-periodically by horizontal, transverse partitions, tabulae, hence the name. In many there are also generally short vertical partitions, septa, which project inward from the corallite wall in various number.
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Polyps occupied only the top of the corallites, above the uppermost septum, although it is unknown whether or not live tissue remained in lower parts. 
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Corallites may be packed close together so as to be polygonal in section, with communication through mural pores; separate in clusters with either skeletal elements, coenenchyme, between, or with spaces left empty, communication through horizonatal tubes; or in contiguous chain-like rows. Coralla (pl of Corallum) may reach dimensions of 2m or more with individual corallites having diameters ranging form about 0.2 mm to 20 mm.
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==Taxonomy==
==Taxonomy==

Revision as of 17:26, 12 September 2013

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