This coral reef is covered with a type of coral known as a gorgonian. Gorgonian are a type of coral that forms large, branching structures that can resemble a tree. They are found throughout the oceans of the world, especially in the tropics and subtropics. Gorgonians are also known as sea whips and sea fans and are similar to the sea pen, which is a soft coral. Each gorgonian is actually a colony of thousands of tiny coral polyps. The polyps secrete hard substance called gorgonin to create the coral structure.