Close relatives of the sea pens, soft corals live in colonies attached to the seabed and can be flat, covering rock surfaces, or branched.
Soft coral has a flat form, growing in folds on the rocky surface, and is usually a grey colour that darkens when the polyps expand to feed.
Soft corals live in coastal waters.
Soft corals are found from South Australia to northern New South Wales.
Feeding and diet
Soft corals all have polyps with eight feathery branches. These polyps feed just like those of hard corals and anemones, using stinging cells to capture tiny marine animals. Capnella gaboensis is the most abundant soft coral around the New South Wales coast.