20 Gorgonian and Black Coral Assemblages in Deep Coastal Bottoms and Continental Shelves of the Mediterranean Sea

  • Andrea GoriEmail author
  • Jordi Grinyó
  • Carlos Dominguez-Carrió
  • Stefano Ambroso
  • Pablo J. López-González
  • Josep-Maria Gili
  • Giorgio Bavestrello
  • Marzia Bo
Part of the Coral Reefs of the World book series (CORW, volume 9)


Coral gardens are increasingly being reported at 40–200 m depth in the Mediterranean Sea. These coral assemblages are composed of gorgonians from shallow coastal rocky bottoms extending their distribution to deeper areas, as well as by gorgonians and black corals with distribution restricted to the continental shelf and upper slope. Gorgonians and black corals are among the main structural species in deep benthic ecosystems, providing shelter and reproductive grounds for a highly diverse associated fauna. Due to their branching morphology and erect position, these deep coral gardens are extremely vulnerable to several fishing activities (bottom trawling, long-lines and trammel net fishing) and should consequently be protected through an ecosystem-based fishery management.


Gorgonians Black corals Deep-coastal bottoms Continental shelf Mediterranean Sea 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrea Gori
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jordi Grinyó
    • 1
  • Carlos Dominguez-Carrió
    • 1
  • Stefano Ambroso
    • 1
  • Pablo J. López-González
    • 2
  • Josep-Maria Gili
    • 1
  • Giorgio Bavestrello
    • 3
  • Marzia Bo
    • 3
  1. 1.Institut de Ciències del Mar, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones CientíficasBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Biodiversidad y Ecología de Invertebrados Marinos, Departamento de Zoología, Facultad de BiologíaUniversidad de SevillaSevillaSpain
  3. 3.Dipartimento di Scienze della Terra, dell’Ambiente e della VitaUniversità degli Studi di GenovaGenovaItaly

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