SPS Corals

  1. SPS Spotlight: Stylophora – Nice And Tough

    When I first started keeping SPS (small polyped stony) corals, I had done my research. Well, I thought I had, but as it turns out there is always more to learn and SPS corals are not all that forgiving when it comes to learning. It is for this very reason that most reputable retailers will advise that SPS corals are not for the beginning reef keeper. That’s good advice – corals can be expensive and SPS corals in particular can command some high prices. I don’t know too many reef hobbyists...
  2. SPS Spotlight: “Pearlberry” – Beautiful, Mysterious, And Finicky

    The Pearlberry is one of those corals that most people look at and think “It’s soooo beautiful – I’m going to try my hand at keeping SPS!” For sure, this is an inspiring coral – it is one of the most spectacular corals in our system, and we sure do love to stare at it. But as most SPS keepers know, the decision to move to the dark side and start keeping the “colored sticks” is not one to be taken lightly. SPS corals can be very demanding and frustrating; even with high-quality water...
  3. Acropora Secale: The Buff Beauty

    Acropora secale is buff. It works out. Not like a “10 minutes on the treadmill” kind of work out, either. This coral is one of the most dense that I have ever kept in my system. It is a high-energy, high-output kind of coral. It obviously loves to consume high amounts of calcium and other ions essential for building its really heavy and thick skeleton. Likewise, it loves high-intensity light and wave action. Like Acropora humilis, A. secale is one of the heavyweights of the reef builders....
  4. SPS Spotlight: Mistaken Identity – Acropora tortuosa and Its Imposters

    Tortuosa are an especially interesting species of Acropora. As SPS lovers have come to know, the variety of color and growth forms in this group of corals perpetually attracts the interest of reef-aquarium hobbyists. Many environmental parameters affect a coral’s coloration; most notably light intensity and spectrum. Acropora tortuosa certainly stands out in its wide range of coloration. There are green, blue, yellow, even pale blue/white and several variants in between. As mentioned in my...
  5. SPS Spotlight: Mo Flo – The Beautiful Acropora Efflorescens

    This month, I present another thickly growing SPS, the beautiful A. efflorescens. The “efflo” as is frequently called in the aquarium trade, is a plating coral that is rare by SPS standards, growing natively mainly in the North Indian Ocean and indo-Pacific in a range that wraps around Indonesia, Malaysia, and the southern tip of India around Sri Lanka. While similar in overall shape to A. branchi and A. clathrata, Efflo’s have a very distinctive growth pattern, forming massive plates with...
  6. What about the Merulina Coral?

    Are you into rare corals but also like preserving life in the ocean? The Merulina coral, also known as Lettuce, Cabbage, Ridge, or Ruffled Coral, may just be your ticket to preservation! Some species of Merulina coral fall within the Marine Protected Areas. Growing these corals in captivity to study is the only way we can help them stay on our planet and not get lost in the reef. If you have a knack for SPS and want to do your part for science you will love this coral. image via reef2reef...
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