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Symbioses: mutualistic exchanges give self support

about 10about 11Corals: the coralline skeleton is secreted by a polyp, but the beautiful colours of corals are due to their symbiotic zooxanthellae, which are dinoflagellates.

Sea Slugs: some gastropods graze on algae and take up the photosynthetically active chloroplasts.

Lichens: partnerships between green microalgae (or cyanobacteria) and fungi, lichens are sensitive indicators of pollution and are a vital part of the arctic tundra.

Endosymbioses: the earliest marine organisms were green and red algae, formed as as a photosynthetic cyanobacterium was engulfed by another organism; other endosymbiotic exchanges led to the huge microalgal diversity.