Marine Wildlife Encyclopedia
Organ Pipe Coral Tubipora musica
Although the organ pipe coral has a hard skeleton, it is not a true stony coral. Instead, it belongs in the group of cnidarians that includes soft corals and sea fans. Its beautiful red skeleton is made up of parallel tubes joined by horizontal links, and bits of this animal’s skeleton are often found washed up on tropical shores. A single polyp extends from the end of each tube, and when the polyps expand their eight branched tentacles to feed, the skeleton cannot be seen.