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Cladocora caespitosa


Unlike other EDGE Coral species, C.caespitosa is relatively well documented as it is widespread throughout the Mediterranean Sea and can be locally abundant.

It is known to have an estimated generation length of 30 years, however, severe population declines of up to 80% in just 9 years have been reported from the Columbretes Islands, off the east coast of Spain. Continuous monitoring of this species is highly recommended by IUCN.

It is known by several common names including Busy Coral, Mediterranean Pillow Cora and Thin Tube Coral.


  • Order: Scleractinia
  • Family: Faviidae
  • Trend: decreasing
  • Depth Range (m): 5 - 40m

EDGE Score

EDGE Score: 4.47 (?)
ED Score: 9.97 (?)
GE / IUCN Red List (?)
Not Evaluated Data Deficient Least Concern Near Threatened Vulnerable Endangered Critically Endangered Extinct in the Wild Extinct


Cladocora caespitosa can be considered as part of the recent fossil history of the Mediterranean Sea. Since the Pliocene C. caespitosa has been the only species that develops monospecific reef-like structures in the Mediterranean Basin.

Habitat and Ecology

This species can occur on a wide range of substratum, down to a maximum depth of 40m.

In Cyprus, the species occurs in the first meters of depth (1-5 m), whilst in several western Mediterranean locations, such as Medes Islands and Cap de Creus, the species is commonly found below 20m depth in dim light conditions. It is known in a variety of habitats but hydrodynamic protection and strong currents seem to enhance population growth.

Find out more

This wordcloud illustrates the threats facing this species. The size of each word indicates the extent of a species range that is affected by that threat (larger size means a greater area is affected). The colour of the word indicates how much that threat impacts the species (darker shades of red mean the threat is more severe).

Urban development Industrial development Tourism Extreme temperatures Shipping Fishing Recreation Invasive species Native species Wastewater Industry

Threat wordcloud key:

Small area affected
Large area affected
Least severe
Most severe
Severity unknown
Source: The IUCN List of Threatened Species. Version 2017.1.
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