Culter et al. 2006

scientific article | Coral Reefs

Pulley reef: a deep photosynthetic coral reef on the West Florida Shelf, USA

Culter JK, Ritchie KB, Earle SA, Guggenheim DE, Halley RB, Ciembronowicz KT, Hine AC, Jarrett BD, Locker SD, Jaap WC


Pulley Reef (24°50’N, 83°40’W) lies on a submerged late Pleistocene shoreline feature that formed during a sea-level stillstand from 13.8 to 14.5 ka (Jarrett et al. 2005). The reef is currently 60-75 m deep, exhibits 10-60% coral cover, and extends over approximately 160 km2 of the sea floor. Zooxanthellate corals are primarily Agaricia lamarcki, A. fragilis, Leptoseris cucullata, and less common Madracis formosa, M. pharensis, M. decactis, Montastraea cavernosa, Porites divaricata, Scolymia cubensis and Oculina tenella. Coralline algae are comparable in abundance to stony corals. Other macroalgae include Halimeda tuna, Dictyota divaricata, Lobophora variegata, Ventricatri ventricosa, Verdigelas pelas, and Kallymenia sp. Anadyomene menziesii is abundant. The reef provides a habitat for organisms typically observed at much shallower depths, and is the deepest known photosynthetic coral reef on the North America continental shelf.

Research sites
Depth range
60- 75 m

Mesophotic “mentions”
0 x (total of 187 words)

* Presents original data
* Focused on 'mesophotic' depth range
* Focused on 'mesophotic coral ecosystem'

Community structure

Scleractinia (Hard Corals)
Algae (Macro, Turf and Crustose Coralline)

USA - Pulley Ridge

SCUBA (open-circuit or unspecified)

Author profiles