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Related FAQs: Faviids, Faviids 2, Faviids 3, Faviid Identification, Faviid Behavior, Faviid Compatibility, Faviid Selection, Faviid Systems, Faviid Feeding, Faviid Disease, Faviid Disease 2, Faviid Disease 3, Faviid Disease 4, Faviid Disease 5, & Faviid Reproduction/Propagation, Stony/True Coral, Coral System Set-Up, Coral System Lighting, Stony Coral Identification, Stony Coral Selection, Coral PlacementFoods/Feeding/Nutrition, Disease/Health, Propagation, Growing Reef CoralsStony Coral Behavior,

Related Articles: Large Polyp Stony CoralsStony or True Corals, Order Scleractinia, Dyed Corals

/The Best Livestock For Your Reef Aquarium:

"Honeycomb", Brain Corals, More and Less, Family Faviidae, pt. 1

To: Part 2, Part 3, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8

By Bob Fenner

Caulastrea echinulata

Family Faviidae Gregory 1900. The second largest family of stony/true corals (after the Acroporids of course). More than twenty genera (24)... Most are roundish to hemispherical and "brain like" in appearance, though there are some notable exception. All bear Zooxanthellae and are colonial. Some look like mazes, others bumpy pineapples...


    Widely distributed in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. Two common genera; Favia, Montastrea.

Genus Australogyra (Veron and Pichon 1977). One species. /WA Corals:  robust branching colonies • branches often fuse • corallites can form short valleys • no columellae • tentacles rarely extend during the day • resembles Favites
Placed by some folks in the family Merulinidae.

Australogyra zelli (Veron and Pichon 1977). Branching colonies of up to two meters across. Corallites of thick walls that are smooth and rounded. Bunaken, Sulawesi, Indonesia image. 

Genus Caulastrea Dana 1846, Candy Cane Corals. From the Greek: "Kaulos" meaning Cabbage stalk and "Aster" for star. Look like a sprouting cabbage on their stick like ("phaceloid") colonial structure. /WA Corals: phaceloid colonies • small corallites 1-2 cm diameter • fine septa, occassionally exert
Placed by some folks in the family Merulinidae; see there.

Genus Colpophyllia Milne Edwards and Haime 1848. One species.

Colpophyllia natans (Houttuyn 1772), Symmetrical Brain Coral. Large roundish to hemispherical  colonies or encrusting. Long snake-like valleys. Septa short, equal and pointing out. A fine ambulacral groove runs along the top between corallite walls, and a further line can be seen midway down the valleys where they change slope to the bottom. The world's largest Brain Coral on the right off of Flying Reef, Tobago; below, a view of it edge-wise and a colorful shot and close-up of  smaller specimens in the Bahamas.

Bigger PIX:
The images in this table are linked to large (desktop size) copies. Click on "framed" images to go to the larger size.

To: Part 2, Part 3, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8

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