Number of described Scelerantinian corals (stony corals or hard corals) as of 1999

Range ~1300 described scleractinian species
Organism Coral
Reference Blackall LL, Wilson B, van Oppen MJ. Coral-the world's most diverse symbiotic ecosystem. Mol Ecol. 2015 Nov24(21):5330-47. doi: 10.1111/mec.13400 p.5332 left column 2nd paragraphPubMed ID26414414
Primary Source Cairns SD (1999) Species richness of recent Scleractinia. Atoll Research Bulletin, 459, 46.
Comments P.5332 left column 2nd paragraph: "Currently, there are ~1300 described scleractinian species (primary source). Scleractinian corals first appear in the fossil record in the mid-Triassic (c. 240 million years ago) after a 14-million-year gap in the coral fossil record (Veron 1995 Stanley & Fautin 2001). Early molecular phylogenies showed an origin of the Scleractinia that predates their oldest fossils (c. 300 million years ago) and some were unresolved at the base of the tree, suggesting that scleractinians evolved more than once from soft-bodied ancestors and are thus not monophyletic (Romano & Palumbi 1996, 1997, Romano & Cairns 2000, Chen et al. 2002, Cuif et al. 2003)."
Entered by Uri M
ID 114510