Pink Sea Fan (Eunicella Verrucosa)

Latin name: Eunicella verrucosa
Common name: Pink sea fan
Other names: White Gorgonian
Class: Anthozoa
Order: Alcyonacea
Family: Gorgoniidae
Genus: Eunicella

Distribution: Mediterranean, Atlantic.

Habitat: Attached to rocks and vertical cliff walls via holdfast from depths of 15 metres and deeper.

Behaviour: Their fan-like structures lie across the current to collect food particles. The numerous small polyps on the branches capture plankton.

Size: Up to 30 cm.

Shape: They are branched in one plane, forming large fan-like structures. Carries numerous small polyps on branches.

Colour: Pink or white tissue supports brown skeleton.

Enemies: Sea fans serve as hosts for many shrimps and gastropods.

Did you know? Their growth rate is 1.5 - 4.5cm per year, so a 50 cm colony is several decades old. Care must be taken as it takes many years to replace a branch carelessly broken off.

Protected under Gibraltar's Nature Protection Ordinance