The corallites are connected at intervals by horizontal platforms containing solenia, and at the level of each platform the cavity of the corallite is divided by a transverse calcareous partition, either flat or cup-shaped, called a tabula.
Formerly all corals in which tabulae are present were classed together as Tabulata, but Tubipora is an undoubted Alcyonarian with a lamellar stolon, and the structure of the fossil genus Syringopora, which has vertical corallites united by horizontal solenia, clearly shows its affinity to Tubipora.
C, Similar section through three corallites of Lophohelia prolifera.
This coenenchyme'may be scanty, or may be so abundant that the individual corallites produced by budding seem to be immersed in it.
After division the corallites continue to grow upwards, and their zooids may remain united by a bridge of soft tissue or coenosarc. But in some cases, as they grow farther apart, this continuity is broken, each corallite has its own edge-zone, and internal continuity is also broken by the formation of dissepiments within each calicle, all organic connexion between the two zooids being eventually lost.
Septa radial; dissepiments present; an epitheca surrounds the base of massive or maeandroid forms, but only surrounds individual corallites in simple or branching forms. Typical genera - Goniastraea, M.