Tag Archive: corals

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Cnidaria
Class: Anthozoa
Order: Scleractinia
Family: Fungiidae

Genus/species: Fungia sp.

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Hexacoral Genus noted for short, tapering tentacles and a very large mouth opening. The structure is home to a single polyp which sits in a calcareous cup, the corallite. Many septae stretch from the central mouth to sides of the polyp. Usually the form is nearly circular. 

This specimen has its tentacles retracted.

Diameter up to 28 cm (11 inches

Mushroom Coral24651024753_5ace92aaf6_k

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Indo-Pacific from the Red Sea and east Africa, west to Hawaii in tropical and subtropical latitudes. Found among other coral, rubble, or on sand.

DIET IN THE WILD: Plankton, jellies (using nematocysts), proteins (using sticky cilia)

REPRODUCTION: Fungia corals can reproduce sexually or asexually. During sexual reproduction, eggs and sperm are released into the water where the egg is fertilised and develops into larvae. Juvenile Fungia are attached, but become free-living with age, Budding and fragmentation.also can occur.

This specimen has its tentacles retracted.

Mushroom Coral5064192598_beeff0e593_o

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List Least Concern (LC)

REMARKS: Rather than forming colonies like most corals, Fungia corals are usually solitary and free-living. Because they are unattached, Fungia can be easily moved by waves, and so are most often found in protected places, often at depths where wave action is reduced.

By inflating the body cavity, mushroom corals are able to upright themselves after being overturned. They will travel by inflating their tissue and using current to move.

When Fungi are in immediate contact with other hard corals, they secrete a mucus that can damage coral tissues and prevents the over growth of these neighbouring corals.

Mushroom coral skeleton below

Mushroom Coral24929915125_850e98ad03_k


California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Water is life Color on the Reef 2017

Aquarium Corals E H Borneman TFH Publications 2001 page253-257

Ron’s flickr  https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/5063580569/in/album-72157659465376212/

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

Arkive www.arkive.org/mushroom-corals/fungia-spp/

Animal World animal-world.com/Aquarium-Coral-Reefs/Plate-Coral


KINGDOM Animalia

PHYLUM Cnidaria (possess cnidocytes)

CLASS Anthozoa (Sea Anemones and Corals)

SUBCLASS Hexacorallia (water-based organisms formed of colonial polyps generally with 6-fold symmetry)

ORDER Scleractinia (Stony Corals)

FAMILY Merulinidae

GENUS Hydnophora sp.

Hexacoral or stonycorals with colonies that may be massive, encrusting, or branched; usually brown, greenish, or yellowish. Conical protuberances over the entire colony’s surface. Tentacles often partially extended during the day.

Widely distributed in the Indo- Pacific. Common in variety of reef habitats.

Nutrition mostly provided by symbiotic zooxanthellae, but also take other food sources, such as plankton.

REPRODUCTION: The small polyp stony (SPS) corals are male and female and can reproduce both sexually and asexually. They reproduce sexually by releasing eggs and sperm at the same time (spawning), resulting in a fertilized egg which then forms into a free-swimming planula larva. Eventually the planula larvae settles onto the substrate, becoming plankters. This then forms a tiny polyp which begins to excrete calcium carbonate and develops into a coral. Planula larvae are extremely vulnerable to predation, and very few survive. Hydnophoras reproduce asexually from breakage due to storms resulting in fragmentation.

REMARKS: Hydnophora are very aggressive and can extend sweeper polyps and sting or basically eat other corals it touches.

LOCATION; Main Philippine Coral Reef Tank PR04

flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/4673421321/in/set-72157623778757037/

WORDPRESS SHORTLINK  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-nP

Phylum Cnidaria, Class Anthozoa, Order Scleractinia, Family Acroporidae,

Acropora spp.

DISTRIBUTION:  Indo-Pacific, Caribbean.

HABITAT: Habitat: Shallow reef environments with bright light and relatively strong currents. Often dominate shallow parts of the reef, especially the surf zone

APPEARANCE: Growth forms extremely variable: slender branched fingers, broad antlers, table-like plates are common. Among the most colorful of reef-building corals; may be cream, yellow, blue, green, purple, pink, even fluorescent. Polyps small; set along the branches.  Characterized by light-colored polyps at the tips of branches where budding and growth take place, fueled by the energy produced by zooxanthellae in lower parts of the branch that give it color

DIET: Feed on microplankton, mostly at night; significant nutrition provided by photosynthetic zooxanthellae

REPRODUCTION/DEVELOPMENT: These fragile corals usually reproduce without sex (asexually). As pieces break off, they grow on their own as clones (fragmentation). But spring and summer bring an orgy of sex. Warming waters and a full moon can stimulate hundreds of corals to release clouds of eggs and sperm into the water at the same time. Most Acropora species are broadcasters, a few are brooders.

REMARKS: A major contributor to reef structures worldwide.

flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/2999925430/in/set-72157608597451452/

WORDPRESSSHORTLINK http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-p9

LOCATION: Animal Attractions, Philippine Coral Reef, and other tropical reef exhibits.


Ref: California Academy of Sciences Animal Attraction Exhibit 2012



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