Dead Man's Fingers
Alcyonium digitatum

f22 @ 1/60s, Kodachrome 25 slide film, ASA 25, Nikonos II w 35mm and 1:2 extension tube, Oceanic flash and aluminum flash reflector


"Alcyonium digitatum," Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Alcyonium digitatum or dead man's fingers is a species of soft coral in the Alcyoniidae family. It is found around the coasts of the northern Atlantic Ocean. Dead man's fingers is a colonial coral forming clumps of yellow, white or cream-coloured fleshy masses of finger-like lobes. The surface layer include many sclerites which form a crust. The individual polyps are white and translucent, and project from the leathery surface when feeding, giving the colony a furry appearance. Dead man's fingers is found along the Atlantic coasts of north west Europe from Portugal to Norway. The species also occurs in parts of Canada and the north eastern coast of the United States, the Gulf of Maine and the Bay of Fundy. The polyps live in colonies attached to bedrock, boulders, stones and occasionally the shells of crabs and gastropods. They are most plentiful in areas with strong water movement and where there is insufficient sunlight for algae to predominate. They are usually found in the sublittoral zone down to about fifty metres.
Narragnasett Bay, Narragansett, Rhode Island
 
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