Corals reproduce in two different ways - sexually and asexually. Sexual reproduction can happen in two ways broadcast spawning and brooding. Many corals are able to spread across reef space by asexual means, such as fragmentation, but this results in clones of the same colony and does not increase the diversity or gene pool of the reef. Like many marine invertebrates, corals have a two-phase life cycle, a planktonic larval phase and a sessile adult phase, where most species live attached to the reef. Figure 6. Corals are sedentery animals, so how do they reproduce? Much like the Porifera phylum, coral reproduces asexually through budding and gemmules. It can be a useful addition to sexual techniques, for example for coral species that naturally reproduce asexually and sexually (staghorn corals, some Acropora spp.). Sexual reproduction. Budding is a form of asexual reproduction that results from the outgrowth of a part of a cell or body region leading to a separation from the original organism into two individuals. Reefs restored with corals created by sexual reproduction are likely to be more resilient, though managing this process hasn’t been easy for scientists to do. On a healthy reef, when corals break, the broken pieces can lodge in cracks and crevices and grow into new colonies that are clones of the parent. Externally fertilized eggs develop while adrift. Euphyllia clones that dripped from the parent colony have settled in an aquarium of Gary Moss. This is asexual reproduction and is called “fragmentation”. This mass reproduction only happens once a year. However Reef Coral has different parts to budding unlike the Porifera phylum. Corals also reproduce sexually by “spawning”. This distinguishment tends to be by species, but sometimes is by geographical region. Mass coral spawning. Heliofungia corals can reproduce sexually or asexually. Free-swimming larvae are released into the water and settle within hours. All asexual reproduction — budding, parthenogenesis and coral bail out — result in clones being formed. Sexual Reproduction. Within a fortnight, the larvae will settle on to hard substrate. Most Reef Corals reproduce sexually, however they can reproduce asexually and become hermaphrodites. One of the most spectacular events to occur on the Great Barrier Reef is the annual synchronised spawning of corals. Corals reproduce sexually by either internal or external fertilization. Internally fertilized eggs are brooded by the polyp for days to weeks. During sexual reproduction, eggs and sperm are released into the water, where the fertilised egg develops into larvae. Corals reproduce both sexually and asexually. One way is sexually through spawning, when the corals release eggs and sperm into the water (often at the same time due to some sort of trigger).External sexual reproduction occurs when colonies of coral release huge numbers of eggs and sperm that are often glued into bundles (one bundle per polyp) that float towards the surface. After a few … Approximately 75% of stony corals are hermaphrodite, while others have separately sexed colonies or individuals. Coral polyps reproduce sexually and asexually. At least one Goniopora species is known to be a brooder. Sexual reproduction diversifies the gene pool. Budding occurs commonly in some invertebrate animals such as corals and hydras. Using sexual coral reproduction for reef restoration ('sexual coral restoration') requires expertise and initial research to understand reproduction of a specific species. Coral colonies can be comprised of solely hermaphrodites, single sex individuals or a mix or male, female and hermaphrodite corals. 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