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FAQs about Pocilloporid Corals 1

Related Articles: Pocilloporids, SPS Corals

Related FAQs: Pocilloporids 2, & FAQs on: Pocilloporid Identification, Pocilloporid Behavior, Pocilloporid Compatibility, Pocilloporid Selection, Pocilloporid Systems, Pocilloporid Feeding, Pocilloporid Health, Pocilloporid 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, SPS Identification, SPS Behavior, SPS Compatibility, SPS Selection, SPS Systems, SPS Feeding, SPS Disease, SPS Reproduction,

At right: a Stylophora colony in the Red Sea.

Pocillopora Question, not enough info - 10/8/2009
Hi Scott V/WWM Crew,
Hope you're well!!!
I have a question that's been bothering me for a while.
I've recently (2weeks ago) purchased what i believe to be a Pocillopora verrucosa coral. I would have attached a picture, but my photography skills are rubbish :-). Anyways, it was brownish before and now its pinkish with white tips. Are the white tips a sign of growth or trouble? There also seems to be some brown matter on the tips, producing bubbles? Is this an algal problem? I do have some brownish hair algae growing in areas of the tank. I do like this specimen (and the little coral crab living in it!) and would love to see it thrive.
All levels, PO4, NO3, Alk etc are normal/zero.
Your thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated!!!
<Hey Adriel! Unfortunately, judging simply by description might be questionable at best, or detrimental at worst. Please do provide us a picture or two to look over, as well as the actual numbers from your tank
testing. The brown matter on the tips producing bubbles does sound like an algal problem to me, but again this is quite hard to judge without an image to base upon. -JustinN>

P. damicornis problems    4/24/08 Hi guys, Your website has helped me with my own tank a countless number of times but today I come to you with a question from on the job. We currently have been having problems with a Pocillopora damicornis culture. The tank has had lots of what looks like hair algae but a little washed out for quite some time now. All nutrient (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and phosphorus) levels are negligent <Negligible I think you mean> (probably since the algae are sucking up anything extra). <Yes... often a/the case> This has made maintenance a pain but really hasn't caused any major problems. About 10 days ago, however, we had a few colonies (maybe about 5) quickly decline in the southeast corner of the tank and just a few days ago in the northwest corner (so complete opposite ends). The only reason I can think that it may be localized in these two corners is because of more stagnant water conditions. <And perhaps less useful light... do you have a PAR meter?> I believe it may be brown jelly, would this infect P. damicornis? <Mmm, could.> It starts at the base and can take over half of a colony in a matter of hours. The tissue kind of goes up and then sloughs off leaving just a skeleton behind. <I would remove to elsewhere, any colonies showing such. Immediately> I wish I would have taken pictures of this to show you and I will if it continues. If this is indeed what it is, I know you have said to add Lugol's solution or another source of iodine to the tank, but what I cant find is how much. <Is a given concentration, not how much per se... You need an iodine/ide test kit> Also, my boss would like to know ways in which it can be introduced ( I have several theories but she would like an unbiased opinion before I tell you more details of our culture methods, my thoughts on the situation, ect…). <No such word... is etc... a contraction/shortening of et cetera res... Latin for "and other things"> A few other details: after the first occurrence, I added activated carbon to the inline filter (something I believe should be there all the time) but it is a very small amount for the tank size (a couple cups for a main tank and sump total volume of about 250 gallons). It was about 5 days or so (its all logged so I can be exact down to the hour if need be) between outbreaks. Also, when taking out the first few, tissue got blown around the tank and touched other coral colonies which up to this point have been unaffected. As always, thanks for any ideas/advise, Carl <Have you seen the small, near the same color Nudibranch that causes trouble with Montiporas? I encourage you, your boss to contact Morgan Lidster of Inland Aquatics here. In Terre Haute, Indiana. Bob Fenner>

Re: P. damicornis problems 5/1/08 Hi Bob and crew, Thank you for your timely response, and I apologize for this one being so delayed. Soon after I sent the past e-mail, I realized that this was just a case of RTN. Any colony showing signs was removed immediately. The most probable cause was extra stress. I cringe to say that it was most likely due to the addition of several new invertebrates (sponges, gorgonians, anemones, crabs, and snails) that were not quarantined. <Erk!> I personally did not feel that any of these should have gone into a culture tank, perhaps with the exception of the snails and crabs, and certainly not before they were quarantined. <We agree> I thought this was very poor practice for a research facility. I spoke up about adding sponges that could potentially release toxins and anemones that could substantially increase the nutrient load, but my voice was not heard (I am unfortunately very low on the totem pole). <The curse of a government or other large bureaucratic job...>  They were added for filtration (personally I think they are putting more in than they are taking out), and will not be used for any experimentation. RTN started 9 days after all the invertebrates were introduced. I have to ask, do gorgonians tend to release any more allelochemicals than SPS corals would? <Oh yes... some species can to a huge degree> The good news is that there have been no more fatalities although I would not say we are in the clear yet. Thanks for all the advice! Carl <Thank you for this follow-up. BobF>

Pocillipora struggle  12/19/07 Hi crew, I have a 75g reef tank. My most recent addition is a Pocillopora frag. When I got it from the store, it looked great. The polyps all had really good extension, and it was nice and fuzzy. In about a week it had turned to this. The polyps come out more when the lights go off for the night, but not nearly as much as they did at the LFS. http://s160.photobucket.com/albums/t171/NirvanaFan01234/12-18-07/?action=view&current=DSC00032.jpg <Okay> It was under metal halide lighting at the LFS. I have 440 watts of VHO lighting. I was told this would be enough lighting. The frag is currently about 6" from the surface of the water. All of my other corals are doing very well. The Pocillopora is the only one that is showing signs of any distress. Do you have any idea on what could be wrong? Is there any hope to save it. <How long have you had this frag?> My current stats are: Specific gravity - 1.025 ammonia, nitrite, nitrate - 0 magnesium - 1200ppm calcium - 400ppm alkalinity 8dkh <These are all fine> My test kits are getting old, so I think I am going to have the LFS test them to double check them. I have tried moving the frag up, down, into low flow, into medium flow, and even into high flow. Nothing seems to be working. Thank You in advance, Joe <May just be adjusting... There is much, likely TOO much to refer you to indirectly on WWM re Scleractinian health... but perhaps perusing the FAQs files on the families will awaken something to your consciousness... Otherwise... read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/acclimcoralslight.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Dying Green Birds Nest Coral... poisoned   11/4/07 Hello, I'm getting a little desperate on my new aquarium. I have a 50 gallon tank that's been setup for about 3 months now I rushed the process by buying about 10 pounds of live sand from a well established refugium at a fish store near my house and filled the tank about half way up with coralline algae covered live rock (figured I'd take a few short cuts so I could stock it sooner) I had a recent outbreak of Ick that I couldn't get under control with fresh water dipping <This is not a sure cure...> and the fish store down the street from me sold me a small blue bottle of ich cure made by Aquatrol, Inc. I was told this was completely reef safe <... no> which was very important to me since I have started collecting coral frags I currently have a very small Zoanthid colony a single Ricordea some star polyps and a green birds nest coral (this one is my favorite it's about the size of a quarter) my tank currently has 2 circulation pumps and a hang off the back protein skimmer I add PurpleUp daily <Not a fan...> with top offs of Kalkwasser I've started adding Seachem Reef Iodide to try to save my birds nest but to no avail. After adding the ich cure to my tank every 24 hours for 3 days I had one Astrea snail die and my birds nest turned completely white I thought it was completely gone but a few days later the polyps re-opened as green as ever unfortunately about half of them are now gone and only the top branches are still showing signs of feeding. Water Parameters: PH 8.3 Ammonia 0 nitrite 0 nitrate 10 KH 9 Calcium 450 salinity 1.023. Is there anyway I can save my favorite coral? my only fish include a fat green mandarin and a 3" copper band butterfly My lighting is the T5 HO Nova Extreme 36" with the 2 10k's and the 2 460nm actinic's with 3 moon white lunar lights (should I keep these on 24/7 <No...> I was told to but it seems odd) any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank You, James <Sorry to state James, but you've poisoned the system... and are continuing to do so with the "Purple Up"... I would "punt" and add a pad of PolyFilter... to remove most excess, cut the use of the coralline booster... and hope. Bob Fenner>

Pink Bird's nest coral hlth.   4/11/07 Hi, <Hello there> I have a question about my pink bird's nest coral.  I purchased it around mid-January and was told to keep it in the bottom 1/3 of my 50gal reef (250W 10,000K HQI metal halide + two 96W actinic PCs). <Is/was this similar to what this colony had been exposed to?> I noticed some tissue recession on the bottom of the coral where it was shaded and moved it up to a spot about 2/3 up the aquarium, with fairly intense light.  My thinking was that it wasn't getting enough light near the base.  It shows new growth at the tips of the coral, <What they do> however I've recently noticed that the tissue still appears to be receding near the base of the coral.  The decay stopped in some spots that were more visible.  I'm wondering if this is a slowly progressing necrosis.  I've attached a picture that shows the original boundaries of decay with white arrows and the new edges with black arrows.  I've heard of fragging some stony corals above the sites of tissue necrosis in order to save them.  That's not really something I want to do to this piece though.  Is there something I should do to treat the coral? Thank you, Edmund <Mmm... not much is my response... Does appear to be mostly healthy... Do you feed this? Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/corlfdgfaqs.htm and the linked files above... There may be other factors not mentioned here at play (e.g. allelopathy, avitaminosis... an imbalance of biomineral/s...). Bob Fenner>

Crabs in my reef?  Yes a Coral Crab (Trapezia ferruginea)  3/10/07 Hello Again Bob, <Hi Brian, Mich here tonight!> I found some crabs hanging out in a couple of my Acropora corals last night. I have pulled them out of the reef, but still have no clue what kind of crab they are. There are 3 photos below if you could tell me what you think they are it would be greatly appreciated. <This looks like a Coral Crab (Trapezia ferruginea).  They are reef safe and eat mucus off their host coral.  They usually hitchhike on stony corals and are typically hardy when provided a host, which is usually a Pocillopora spp. or a Stylophora spp.  If you want them to live, and you should, they need to be returned to their respective corals.> Thank you!
<Welcome!  -Mich>

Bird's Nest Coral, Caliendrum becomes white   6/17/06 Hello, first of all I want You to Know I am Italian so my English is quite (not to say very) poor. excuse me for next errors. Thanks. <I wish all "native" English speakers were as literate and gracious. Thank you> As write in the title in my tank there is a little fragment of Seriatopora caliendrum (dimension like an apricot to give an idea) that is becoming with from the center to the tips, even if it continues its tips growth. Tips are brown (the very top are white because of the growth) becoming brighter and brighter to the centre of the branches until the white of the skeleton is visible. Tissue seems to be in place (even if you can see through) and so the polyps do but all zooxanthellae had gone. <Yes... this appearance is typical of wild, healthy specimens...> Tank set up: 85 litres full of rock coming from my old big tank, 1/2 inc aragonite sugar  from old tank, 150W HQI 10000K, 4000 litres per hour global movement and Tunze 3110 skimmer. Temp regulate by heater and fan with digital controller 27-28 Celsius. Refill with CaOH. water change weekly 10%. I have an upstream refugium of about 40 litre. DSB, Chaetomorpha growing quite fast and Xenia inside. Light if it's interesting 2x24W 3100K + 1X24W Blue. No fish in tank, only 2 Lysmata amboinensis 2 hermit crab, many snails. Only a Synchiropus ocellatus in refugium (I take it to save it from another horror tank) long a little more than 1 inc. What do You think about this disease ? Have You ever eared about something like that ? Thank You for your answer. Marco Nanni Italy <I don't think you have a problem here Marco. Take a look on the Net re this species appearance in the wild. What you describe is a healthy colony. Mine here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/pocilloporidae.htm If anything, I might increase your weekly dosage of Iodine/Lugol's with your water changes. Bob Fenner>

Pocillopora Hitch-hikers!  Yep, two of them. 7/27/05 Hello Crew.  Let me start off by thanking you for being here, and I thank you for your consideration of my issue. <Welcome> I have a 117 gallon reef tank with the following statistics: Hardware: Dimensions:  85" X 18" X 8" <? eight...> Pumps:  3 Eheim 1260s and 1 Mag drive 5 Lights:  3 250 Watt MH w/14K Bulbs Photo-period: 10 hours/day Chiller:  1/3 hp Arctica Water Quality: Temp:  78 degrees F, + or - 1 degree Specific Gravity:  1.025, top off done with dosing pump and float valve in sump. Calcium:  420, achieved through daily Calcium Hydroxide Slurry Shots.  Corals deplete Ca by 10 ppm/day. <About right> dKH: 12 pH: 8.0 - 8.2  (I'm currently working on more frequent, twice weekly, water changes to bring this up.  I will also soon add a refugium with macro-algae to help maintain a higher pH. <Eight is fine> Iodide: 0.03 ppm Magnesium:  1350 ppm (I had to supplement to get it above 1300) Strontium: 10 ppm Ammonia: 0 ppm Nitrite: 0 ppm Nitrate: 0 ppm Phosphate: 0.075 ppm Saltwater:  Instant Ocean mixed with RO/DI Water Changes:  15 gallons every Sunday. <All sounds, looks good> Tank Inhabitants: Fish: 1 Clown Goby; 1 Citron Goby; 1 Bi-color Blenny; 1 Firefish; and 1 Watchman Goby Invertebrates: 1 Tridacna Maxima Clam; 1 Montipora sp. (plate form); 1 Pocillopora damicornis; 1 Seriatopora caliendrum; two Zoanthus sp. colonies; 1 Parazoanthus gracilis colony; 2 Xenia Fragments; 2 Ricordea sp.; 1 Lobophyllia sp.; 1 Nephthea sp; 1 Haliclona sp.; <Wow, not easily kept> 20 Nassarius Snails; 2 cleaner Shrimp; and a coral that is either a Pectinia sp. (what the dealer ID'd it as), Symphyllia sp., or  Oulophyllia sp.  I have attached a picture to help with ID. <Please see my pics re these genera in turn, on WWM> My system was converted to a reef tank in March.  The corals have been added at a rate of approximately one every couple of weeks, and the fish have only been in the tank for one month.  I am getting very good growth from the Montipora, Nephthea, Blue Sponge, and Green Star Polyps.  The Lobophyllia has been in the tank for a couple of weeks, and the Pectinia (?) a little over a month.  Both get fed every morning with pieces of krill, scallops, silversides, or mysis shrimp.  I can't say that I see growth in them, but I am hopeful as they eat a considerable amount daily. <Do grow... hard to tell when you see often... a pic is often very useful...   The coral that presents an issue for me at the moment is the Pocillopora.  I've had the coral for about 2 months, and it has just started to show signs of tissue necrosis along the backside of the coral.  Also, many of the polyps deep inside of the branches are now failing to expand.  I don't know if the tissue loss is due to a lack of food (I feed Cyclops-eeze, live phytoplankton and Selco 3 times/week), or if the hitch-hikers are stressing the coral?  My two hitch-hikers are a red colored crab and some kind of small Goby.  I have never seen the crab do damage to the coral, and to be honest, I just saw the Goby for the first time last week.  What makes this so amazing is the fact that I stare into the tank for at least an hour every day.  How the Goby has managed to keep hidden is beyond me. <Happens...> The Goby has a black back half, and I believe that the front half is a dull yellow.  It is hard to get a good look at him, as he is always hiding behind the crab (and I mean right next to it) or on the side of the coral that faces the rear of the tank.  Also, I notice that my Clown Goby is constantly hovering in the coral's branches, and he sometimes nips at the polyps.  It is either a territorial thing with the hitch-hiker Goby, or he wants to mate.  One of my fish books mentions that Clown Gobies will nip SPS polyps during mating, but that it does little damage.  I am also noticing that the clown Goby is now nipping at my Bird's Nest coral.  Should I be concerned about the nipping behavior? <In this size, well set-up, maintained, fed and stocked system, I would not be concerned> Should I try to rid the Pocillopora of its hitch-hikers?  If yes, then how do you recommend that I do it? <I would not get rid of this stony coral, nor worry re the crab, goby... likely the Pocillopora is still just "settling in", but I would make sure that other cnidarians are mal-influencing its health... make sure other "corals" are placed far enough away, use some activated carbon in your filter flow path...> Lastly, could you take a look at my picture and let me know which species of coral I have?  I would greatly appreciate it.  I've also attached a picture of the Pocillopora for your review. <Might be a Symphyllia...> Thank you once again for your kind service.  You guys and gals always seem to pull me through when I need assistance. Lou
<Glad to offer my input. Bob Fenner>
Re: Pocillopora Hitch-hikers!  Yep, two of them. 7/28/05 Thanks for the response Bob.  Of course it would happen that after I wrote this letter to the WWM, my Pocillopora extended its polyps fully each day since. <Heeeee!> I will take your advice and leave the hitch-hikers alone.  I will also go with Symphyllia as the Genus for my unknown coral. As always, I appreciate the time and consideration. Regards, Lou
<Thank you... for sharing... and writing so well. Bob Fenner>

Seriatopora caliendrum Hi Bob, <James, today>             Do you have any ideas where I may be able to find a Seriatopora caliendrum colony or frag? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Brian <Brian, I found a couple places for frags.  Keep in mind these are difficult corals to keep.   http://www.frags.org/keywordsearch.php?keyword=seriatopora+caliendrum&searchmethod=all James (Salty Dog)>

Sick Stylophora 1/7/04 Hello, I've had my 29 gallon running for about 5 months now.  It was  an upgrade from a 20 gal. and I've added a lot of different corals lately.    <hmmm... easy on the "a lot"... this is a tiny tank for corals, unless you plan to frag several times monthly. Even a few corals will outgrow this tank in 1-3 years> I don't know much about what goes good together or where they go, but I've been  able to use your site and Bornemann's book as reference for all my  inquiries. I recently bought a Stylophora which I got a deal on since it wasn't looking very healthy. <please read and understand why it is critical to quarantine all new livestock... particularly ones that look sick. Else you will infect your tank most likely in time with something unsavory> Almost a day or two after it was placed in the tank  I noticed around the base of the living tissue that something had eaten away the  material which was previously there.   <for starters, this coral needs very strong turbulent (not linear as from a power head stream) water flow. 20-30X tank turnover minimum> I remember there being more of this  algal stuff where there is now a white band.  I didn't think much of  it.  A day or two later, I noticed it had increased very slightly.  I  read up in the Borneman book about what is known as White Band Disease.   I'm afraid that maybe that is what I have.   <not likely... this coral just looks starved to death over time> For a remedy, it suggested to  try using Lugol's dip or propagate a healthy chunk off of it. <the coral is too pale... looks starved. I'd leave it be and focus on water flow, light and feeding.>   Are you familiar with this disease?   <yes, somewhat> Do you think this is what I  have?   <cant say from pic quality... but again, its unlikely> What recommendations or questions do you have? <do read the articles here at wetwebmedia.com on QT and check out Steve Pros recent article on the same at reefkeeping.com> Sincerely, Brant

Coral Aggression: Galaxea 1/7/04 Brant here again, <cheers> I really appreciate having such an informative site.  I wanted to  mention in reference to my last e-mail about white band that I also got  a Galaxea at the same time.  I placed it on the top of a rock in the  center of the aquarium with some distance between corals.   <grumble, grumble... would rather have heard it was placed properly in a QT tank first for 4+ weeks. We might not be having this exchange if so <G>> The Stylophora  is only 3-4 inches away and is somewhat 'downstream' from the Galaxea.    <Yikes! The Stylo is soon to be Galaxy coral food> I've read a lot about sweeper tentacles <eventually 10" long from Galaxea... they are one of the worst> and was wondering if this had anything  to do with my Stylophora problem.   <very easily so> My salt level is low also, at about  1.019. <do get this up to 1.023-1.025 for corals> Besides the Stylophora problem, I was wondering if I could/should place my  Galaxea directly on the floor of the tank at the farthest distance from everything else?   <perhaps... they are one of the most aggressive corals in the trade> Your help is greatly appreciated. Sincerely, Chris Brant <best of luck, Anthony>

Reef question hi I have a birds nest hard coral and it is white at the roots << Is it white where it is attached to the rocks, or the entire underside of the coral? >> I'm wondering if it multiplying or dying and how can I help it.<< I wouldn't think that it would go white and expose the skeleton when it is multiplying, so I'll say it isn't happy. >> and also  I have a toad stool it is doing great but I have a problem with it is slumped over how can  help it is happy though please send back thank you for your help << How much, and what type of lighting do you have.  Birds nest in general are very high light corals and should be treated like other stony corals. >> <<  Adam Blundell  >>

Pocillopora Problem? Hello, <Hi there! Scott F. with you today!> I bought a frag identified as Pocillopora damicornis from ETropicals about 2 months ago.  It was advertised as a green Pocillopora, but when I received it, it was a pale brown color. <Not uncommon when newly received...> I placed the coral approximately 5-6 inches from the water surface, and the tank receives light from 2x 96 watt compact fluorescents (1x 10000K and 1x ultra-actinic).  The coral has its polyps extended for the majority of the photoperiod (about 12 hours a day), and sometimes keeps its polyps extended well after the lights go off. <Good!> I was initially worried about this coral, since I would see my Peppermint shrimps seemingly grazing on this particular coral.  It almost looked like it was trying to pick at the polyps.  I have 4 (approx. 1 inch) Peppermint shrimps in my tank.  I read on your site that they may pick at corals, but usually not to harm them (they're rather doing their job and cleaning stuff off of the corals). <I'd get nervous seeing them around my Pocillopora, too. They usually are harmless, but anything is possible, you know?> I make sure that I put in some supplementary food that they are able to eat, and they have been doing it much less. <Excellent. I wish I could have said the same for my Sailfin Blenny, which constantly snacked on my Pocillopora, until I relocated him!> Since being placed in the tank (with moderate indirect, turbulent current, and full exposure to the current light setup), the coral has slowly changed color from the light brown to a fluorescent green. <Awesome!> I figure this was a good sign, since it appears more now of what it was initially described.  However, I just noticed today that there is a small patch (about 1 mm x 1mm)on of the branches of the coral that seem to have lost tissue.  It is not completely white, and still has some brownish hue to it.  The polyps in that small area is either retracted or no longer there.  I'm worried that this could be the start of something bad.  Water parameters are: S.G. of 1.023-1.024, Ammonia and nitrite is 0 and nitrate is 5-10 ppm.  Calcium is 360-400, and pH varies from 8.3-8.6.  The aquarium has a 3 inch live sand bed, and the aquarium is a 55 gallon bowfront with 30 lbs of live rock. The system is about a year and a half old.  I have been having problems with my lighting recently, with the PC bulbs visibly (honestly) losing intensity in about 2 months time.  Could the coral tissue be receding because of inadequate lighting intensity? <I suppose it's possible, but I doubt it, in this case. sounds to me more like a localized response to some sort of trauma (maybe munching?). Keep a close eye on this colony. Not to overly freak you out, but these corals can decline quickly if they suffer significant tissue damage. It may not be a bad idea to "frag" some of the coral if it begins to decline, in the hope of salvaging some of the colony..> I also recognize that this could be a bacterial infection (since I did not dip this coral prior to placing it in the tank...I know...bad form). <Well, you've learned!> I will be upgrading the lighting to 4 x 96 watt PCs in about a week coincidentally, since I plan on keeping SPS's in the future. Sorry that this is exhaustingly long-winded.  Your advice is greatly appreciated.  Thanks!!! Fil <Well, Fil, at this point, I'd just keep observing the colony carefully, and if the entire colony starts to decline, do consider salvaging what you can. On a happier note- I can say that I have witnessed this phenomenon in my own specimen, and it has always rebounded just fine! Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Coral ID Hi <cheers> I bought a sps yesterday and the seller wasn't sure of the ID, so I thought I will like the pros to verify what I thought. I have attached the photo of the coral. I think it is a Stylophora pistillata. Presently, the coral is sited 15cm of air, 10cm of water away from PC lights. A direct PH current on a rotating output will sweep it direct for a very short time every 1 second cycle. Other times when the PH is not directed at it, the random current are bounced off a glass located about 30cm from the coral. Thanks in advance Edwin Lam <Edwin... although the image does not give a clear visage of the polyp structure, this specimen does indeed look like the Pocilloporid, Stylophora pistillata. It will need strong random turbulent water flow and stable water quality as one would provide for most any Scleractinians. They are believed to mature sexually at a young age (just several years old) and may produce planulae asexually if fed well. A fishless upstream refugium is highly recommended here. Best regards, Anthony>

Trying to ID something... Robert, First I wanted to extend my thanks to your friend who stood in your place while you were on a diving trip a few months ago, and I love his straight forward advice, and he gave good advice on my zebra lion. <hmmm... that would have been Steve, Jason or myself, Anthony. You are quite welcome at any rate> I bought some live rock from Petswarehouse.com, Fiji rock in specific which I ended up recurring, and last week I noticed something that I think is a coral, but am not sure. The pics I have of it are too blurry. What I have looks like either Pocillopora verrucosa or Pocillopora damicornis cropping up,  <P damicornis is very common...what a pleasure for you if it is!> but I am not sure. Whatever it is, it is encrusting, it has irregular shaped lobes or polyps, a clear membrane over it, and quite aggressive in spreading. It spreads over live rock where there is little on it as opposed to where coralline has grown over old skeleton. <hmmm... the Pocilloporids would not encrust very far without raising branches. Perhaps another reef invertebrate it is> I have noticed various colonies of this stuff in cream, one in a pinkish brown, and one I am not sure if it is pink coralline or the same thing in pink. The largest of the colonies is about half the size of my palm, and about 1/4 inch thick or better. It has some pores like verrucosa but it also resembles damicornis with the membrane that is over it, so I am not 100% certain. As of thanksgiving or so, this large colony was not there, then all of the sudden, BAM! I thought it was some man eating fungus from area 51 or something; I had never seen anything like it. It does not move, it has no shell, it is not a sponge for sure. It is not porous like a sponge, and the smaller colonies have some sort of structure to it where you can see through the membrane clear enough. The polyp structures or lobe looking things are in no specific pattern, all variant in size, and ranging from a few millimeters to 10-15 mm. How do I know for sure that it is a coral, and if it is, how do I know what the likelihood is of it being a Pocilloporid or not? I also have some other things that look like another variety of a Pocilloporid. <do forward a picture when you can... I suspect I will be able to ID it to your satisfaction. Kindly, Anthony Calfo>

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