Deep-sea Corals

Deep-sea Corals

Student Investigation:

Laying the Foundation for Deep-Sea Coral Gardens

Grade Level:

9 - 12th grade (Life Science/Ecosystem Dynamics)

Lesson Description:

Similar to their shallow-water relatives, deep-sea corals function as foundation species in their communities, providing food, structure, and habitat for many other species. This investigation features data and images from deep-sea coral gardens that students will use to construct an explanation for the deep-sea phenomenon: How does the presence of Lophelia pertusa affect other organisms in a deep-sea coral ecosystem?


Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS): 
  • Performance Expectation: MS-LS2-2
  • Disciplinary Core Ideas: LS2.A: Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems; LS2.C: Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Resilience
Ocean Literacy Essential Principles: 
  • Principle 5: FCs e, f