A reef formed by the coral species Lophelia pertusa at 450m below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico.

A reef formed by the coral species Lophelia pertusa at 450m below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico.

A reef formed by the coral species Lophelia pertusa at 450m below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico.

This photo, taken as part of a major research project led by Penn State Professor of Biology Charles Fisher, shows a reef formed by the coral species Lophelia pertusa at 450m below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico with an orange brisingid starfish in the foreground and a school of fish overhead.

Image: Image courtesy of Lophelia II 2010 Expedition, NOAA OER BOEM