Category: INDO-PACIFIC


TAXONOMY
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Cirrhitidae (Hawkfishes)

Genus/species: Neocirrhites armatus

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Hawkfishes are bottom feeders without swim bladders usually found in coral branches. Cirri at the tips of their dorsal fins identifies them.

The Flame hawkfish has brilliant red color with a black stripe that runs along the base of their dorsal fin, as well as black circles around their eyes.

Length up to 9 cm (3.5 in)

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Found in the Pacific Ocean: Great Barrier reef to Micronesia on corals.

DIET IN THE WILD: Small crustaceans

REPRODUCTION: Oviparous, monogamous

CONSERVATION: IUCN Not Evaluated

References

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/32538479733/in/album-72157629304397467/

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Animal Attractions 2017

fishbase fishbase.org/summary/5832

EOL eol.org/pages/204618/details

reef keeping www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2002-06/hcs3/

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1QC

 

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Anthozoa
Order: Actiniaria
Family: Stichodactylidae

Genus/species: Heteractis magnifica

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: H. magnifica is the second largest in size of all sea anemones. Disc to 1 m (3 ft) in diameter. Column which may be red, purple, or pink, grows to 20 cm (8 in). Tentacles (exceed 8 cm 3 in long) are of uniform thickness and do not taper at te tip; tentacles and oral disc are colored alike in shades of magenta-purple, blue, green , red, white or brown.

 

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Found in the Indo-Pacific at 1–25 m (3-85 ft) often on prominent structures in strong currents or in strong surge locations.

DIET IN THE WILD: Most nutrition is from products of zooxanthellae. Also may eat fish and crustaceans using their stinging nematocysts.

REPRODUCTION: Asexual reproduction by longitudinal fission. The presence of the symbiotic clown fish Amphiprion chrysopterus can increase the amount of asexual reproduction and general growth.
Sexual reproduction, their fertilized eggs develop into a planula larvae which settles on the ocean floor and develops into a polyp.

 

PREDATION: Symbiotic clownfishes, chase away any nibbling predators, especially bristle worms.

LONGEVITY: in the wild. It is estimated that some of these anemones are hundreds of years old. In captivity, the longest lifespan is 80 years.

CONSERVATION: IUCN: Not Evaluated

REMARKS: Host to at least 12 anemonefish species. When disturbed, H. magifica “balls up,”showing only the column with only a few tentacles protruding.
The magnificent anemone is motile when trying to re-position itself to obtain more sunlight. This species moves by creeping on its basal disc, or by letting the tide carry it.
Anemones can be semi-aggressive and sting other anemones that invade their space.

References

California Academy of Sciences Water is Life Animal Attractions 2017

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/32131406193/in/album-72157629304397467/

Animal Diversity Web animaldiversity.org/accounts/Heteractis_magnifica/

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1PJ

 

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Syngnathiformes (Pipefishes and seahorses)
Family: Syngnathidae (Pipefishes and seahorses)

Genus/species: Haliichthys taeniophorus

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Ribboned Pipefish have elongate scaleless bodies with bony knobs above the eyes and spines on body with a series of bony rings. The body color consists of shades of brown, green and yellow; The snout is tube like with no jaw and a terminal mouth. H. taeniophorus has a single dorsal fin, and its head and body are adorned with leafy appendages. They possess a prehensile tail that is used to attach to seagrass while searching for nearby prey.

Length up to 30.0 cm (11.8 in)

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Indo-Pacific: Indonesia south to Australia. Found in protected coastal shallows over or among algae, sea grasses, or floating weeds.

DIET IN THE WILD: Minute invertebrates and small planktonic crustaceans.

REPRODUCTION: They are ovoviviparous. The male carries the eggs in a brood pouch which is found under the tail.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Least Concern. This species may be susceptible to being caught as bycatch and/or targeted for use in trade, but this has not been documented. There are no other known threats to this species.

REMARKS: Pipefishes differ from seadragons which lack the brood pouch of seahorses and pipefishes.

References

California Academy of Sciences Animal Attractions

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/3429248779/in/album-72157608441047857/

fishbase fishbase.org/summary/Haliichthys-taeniophorus.html

Arkive  www.arkive.org/ribboned-pipefish/haliichthys-taeniophorus/

IUCN www.iucnredlist.org/details/95882787/0

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1Pb

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Anthozoa
Subclass: Hexacorallia
Order: Corallimorpharia
Family: Ricordeidae

Genus/sp. Rhodactis spp.

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Rhodactis mushroom grow much larger than other mushroom genera, some attaining sizes of more than 10 inches across. The surface of their mushroom cap is covered with small tentacles (verrucae) or large warty knobs that are radially arranged. They are found attached to rock.

Rhodactus32905288196_ab8d24778a_z

DIET IN THE WILD: Ricordeidae feed both on the products of zooxanthellae, and on zooplankton or fish they catch with their tentacles and nematocysts as well as dissolved organic matter.

Rhodactus32774273105_54135cc7e6_z

REPRODUCTION: Asexual reproduction occurs by two mechanisms. Split or fission reproduction occurs when the coral splits along its mouth creating a clone. Alternatively, particulates released from the foot can develop into a new specimen, which is called laceration.

Sexual reproduction produces a larva called a Planula which once on the seabed develops into a new individual.

References

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Color on the Reef AQA12 2017

Aquarium Corals Eric Borneman TFH publications 2001 pages 206-209

EOL eol.org/pages/4680444/overview

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1M9

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/32905288196/in/album-72157659465376212/

 

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Anthozoa
Order: Alcyonacea
Family: Alcyoniidae

Genus/species: Lobophytum sp.

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Typically colored yellowish brown, some ridged leather corals colored green by their algal endosymbionts. Lobed leather corals often encrusting or low and spreading. Upper surface with rounded or finger-like lobes. Usually no real stalk; colony often grows out from a low platform. Large polyps distinctly spaced from one another. Tentacles are retractile.

Tentacles retracted below

Lobophytum sp.32131393013_65a065d26a_k

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Found in Indo-Pacific, Red Sea tropical coral reefs. Zonation varies by species, intertidal to 30 m. Notes apply to entire genus composed of at least 47 species.

Tentacles extended below

lobophytum sp.15794440950_f989b64b19_k

DIET IN THE WILD: They capture microscopic food particles from the water column, can absorb dissolved organic matter, and also use algal photosynthesis.

REPRODUCTION Typically reproduces asexually by budding or fragmentation.

REMARKS: Like Sarcophyton sp., to which it’s closely related, Lobophytum has two distinct types of polyps, one quite small, the other larger. Sinularia has only one.

References

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Color on the Reef AQA17 2017 Vetting Charles Delbeek

Aquarium Corals Eric Borneman TFH publications 2001 pages 127-129

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/32131393013/in/album-72157659465376212/

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1M0

 

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Anthozoa
Order: Scleractinia (stony corals or hard corals)
Family: Dendrophylliidae

Genus/species: Turbinaria reniformis

(Brain coral Platygyra sp. on the right)

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: T. reniformis may form cup, vase, or spreading scroll-like plates, Color yellow, brown, or sometimes green. The corallites widely spaced apart from each other with the polyps like short tufts sprouting from the surface.

Diameter of plates up to 1 meter (3 ft)

turbinaria32394123080_1e4c866324_o

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Throughout the Indo-Pacific.

Habitat: Variable, from shallow turbid water to clear reef flats and deeper reef slopes ( 2 to 15 metres)

DIET IN THE WILD: Zooxanthellae provide nutrients and energy, and help remove metabolic wastes.

REPRODUCTION: Unlike most corals which are hermaphroditic (T. reniformis have both male and female sex organs releasing gametes for external fertilization.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List Vulnerable (VU) T. reniformisis is susceptible to bleaching and disease due to a more restricted depth range,

REMARKS: When irritated, it can produce large amounts of clear mucus which can damage other corals; the mucus is presumed to contain nematocysts or a toxin.

References

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Shrimpfish exhibit and Philippine Coral Reef Exhibit, 2017 Pam Montbach

Aquarium Corals E.H. Borneman 2001 ppg 318-321

EOL eol.org/pages/1016035/details

ARKIVE  www.arkive.org/yellow-scroll-coral/turbinaria-reniformis/

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1LJ

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/32428403365/in/album-72157659465376212/

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Anthozoa
Order: Scleractinia (stony corals or hard corals)
Family: Faviidae

Genus: Platygyra sp.

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Colonies can be massive, encrusting, dome-shaped or flattened. Corallites (the skeletal cup, formed by an individual stony coral polyp, in which the polyp sits) form meandering walls of brown, green, or gray surrounding contrasting valleys of cream, pink, gray, or even fluorescent green. 

Platygyra32394124350_d187cacd4e_o

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Indo-Pacific, including the Red Sea and around Australia and Southeast Asia. Inhabits a variety of reef locations, including reef flats, back reefs, and deeper waters.

DIET: Primary nutrition received from the photosynthesis of symbiotic zooxanthellae. Supplemental diet from capture of microplankton by stinging tentacles.

REPRODUCTION: Sexually by spawning and asexually by budding (polyps divide to form new polyps)

CONSERVATION: IUCN Least Concern (LC)

References

California Academy of Steinhart Aquarium Sciences Color on the Reef Shrimpfish exhibit 2017

Ron’s flickr  https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/32394124350/in/album-72157659465376212/

Aquarium Corals E H Borneman 2001 ppg 298-99

Arkive  www.arkive.org/brain-coral/platygyra-daedalea/

Carpenter, K.E. (1998) An introduction to the oceanography Corals ftp://ftp.fao.org/docrep/fao/009/w7191e/w7191e10.pdf

IUCN Red List 2009 www.iucnredlist.org/

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1LE

TAXONOMY
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Anthozoa
Subclass: Hexacorallia
Order: Corallimorpharia
Family: Corallimorphidae

Genus/species: Corynactis sp.

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Note ball tipped tentacles. 

BallAnemone31690177025_2d4172bda6_k 

 

 

DISTRIBUTION: Tropical Indian, Central and Western Pacific Oceans

HABITAT: Reef associated

DIET: Small fish and zooplankton

REMARKS: This close relative of sea anemones has sticky ball-tipped tentacles.  Some species of shrimps and fish are immune to the stickiness and live within the tentacles.

Corallimorpharia (Corallimorph) is an order of marine cnidarians closely related to the true sea anemones (Actiniaria). They are mostly tropical, with a narrow column topped with a wide oral disc. The tentacles are usually short or very short, arranged in rows radiating from the mouth. Many species occur together in large groups. In many respects, they resemble the stony corals, except for the absence of a stony skeleton. 

References

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Color on the Reef 2017 AQA17 Charles Delbeek

EOL eol.org/pages/75554/names

WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-ji

flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/31690177025/in/album-72157659465376212/

 

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Anthozoa
Order: Alcyonacea
Family: Nephtheidae

Genus: Capnella sp. (Tree-like soft coral)

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: It has a stalk that is usually cream to brown, with some having a tint of green. Their color is usually cream to brown. The Capnella genus has an erect tree-like structure with lateral branches that are heavily forked. On the top of the branches there are clusters of non-retractable polyps. The base or stalk is without polyps and appears smooth.
(Sinularia spp polyps can retract fully)

Finger Leather Coral24467607171_d42dc69a98_k

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Tropical Indo-West Pacific and Red Sea.
Tend to grow in clear water with stronger currents on deeper reef slopes.

Finger Leather Coral25692244975_89523fbc07_k

DIET IN THE WILD: They capture microscopic food particles from the water column, can absorb dissolved organic matter, and have a symbiotic relationship with a marine algae known as zooxanthellae, where they also receive some of their nutrients.

REPRODUCTION: By budding, fission, and dropping little branches

CONSERVATION: Not on IUCN Red List

References

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Color Cluster 2017 AQA17 Charles Delbeek

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/24467607171/in/album-72157659465376212/

Aquarium Corals E H Borneman TFH Publications 2001 page 135

Ron’s WordPress shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1Lu

EOL eol.org/pages/1761/details

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Anthozoa
Order: Scleractinia
Family: Caryophylliidae (Hexacoral or stony polyped coral)

Genus/species: Plerogyra sinuosa

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Colonial corals often covered
with clusters of bubble-like structures (thus the common name), each over 1 cm in length. Tentacles extend at night to capture small prey. Colored gray, bluish, greenish, brownish or rich cream. The skeleton is a mineral aragonite.

bubble coral23923123353_354a13e35d_o

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Indo-Pacific and Australia region.Found in turbid bays and lagoons, on reefs in deep water or under overhangs.

DIET IN THE WILD: Light-capturing bubble-like vesicles extend during the day to support the photosynthesis of the algal symbionts. Tentacles extend at night to capture small prey.

Bubble Coral4561883874_27975403aa_o

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List Near threatened (NT)

REMARKS: This is a stony coral, despite the soft appearance the “bubbles” give during the day.

References

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Color on the Reef AQA17  Charles Delbeek

Aquarium Corals E H Borneman TFH Publications 2001 Page 311

EOL  eol.org/pages/1006618/details

IUCN Red List www.iucnredlist.org/details/133258/0

WordPress shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1Lo

Ron’s Flickr  https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/23923123353/in/album-72157659465376212/

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