Reef Zonation

1. Fore reef - from about 70 m depth on; little live coral, but lots of debris from higher in the reef. Often lots of sand
2. Reef front - zone of most vigorous growth and highest diversity of coral. Colony shape shifts from encrusting to massive, to branching and plate as wave energy and light decrease
3. Reef crest - highest part of the reef, wave breaker, possibly exposed during low tide
4. Reef flat - rubble zone (storm debris, encrusting organisms), generally good coverage of corals
5. Back reef/lagoon - quiet, sheltered water, sparse corals

::: Source: Reefs Habitats by Zarinah 2007 :::