Sunday Invertebrates - Pocillopora Coral
Pocillopora Coral (Pocillopora spp.) hails from the Indo-Pacific region, and is found in vast numbers in and around the reefs of Hawaii. Forming dense bulky, clumps, this SPS coral can grow as large as several yards wide, depending on the species.
Pocillopora can be kept in reef aquariums as small as 10 gallons (nano-reefs), and prefer bright lighting. These do well in well-fed reef tanks, and also can feed on the zooxanthalle produced in it's own tissue.
Pocillopora typically has wart like bumps all over the skeleton of varying prominence. This coral appears to have a furry look when the coral polyps are extended. If disturbed, the polyps will quickly withdraw into the skeleton. This is a fast growing species that has a propensity of attacking other surrounding corals and sessile invertebrates, and should be given ample space in the aquarium.
Because they are relatively hardy and fast growing, Pocillopora are an ideal SPS coral for beginners. Colors vary from brown to yellow, to green and pink.