Sarcophyton Soft Corals
The Sarcophyton genus contains more than 30 species but the ones that make it into the hobby are almost always Sarcophyton elegans or Sarcophyton glaucum.These corals are commonly referred to in the trade as Toadstool leather coral or Mushroom leather coral and rightfully so.
Lighting can be from low for some species to rather high for others like the elegans but most can be acclimated to a moderate or higher amount of light. As far as flow goes a moderate amount of flow is preferred as these corals need to have the debris,waste matter,and excess slime coat removed form the outer tissue regularly or tissue necrosis can set in.
This coral is tolerant of a variety of water conditions and would be considered a good starter corals for beginners.
A temperature of 72-82 degrees,salinity of 1.023-1.025,PH or 7.8-8.4,KH 7-10,
and no ammonia and nitrites will be sufficient to house the Sarcophyton.
The coloration of these corals tends to be a drab brownish or sometimes pinkish but can also be bright green or yellow. It is not uncommon for the fully extended polyps to have a different tone of color than the body itself making the specimen even more attractive.Many purchased specimens will start out small but it is not uncommon for these to reach sizes of over a foot diameter in the home aquarium and nearly 3 feet in the ocean.
Sarcophytons are able to sustain themselves through zooxanthellae as well as absorb nutrients directly from the water column but they can also benefit from small filter feeder foods.
These soft corals release a number of growth inhibiting compounds and should be kept with activated carbon in systems that contain stony corals to assist in removing some of the chemicals.
Fragging this coral can easily be done ,see fragging sarcophyton thread.
The first picture is of a Glaucum being hosted by a pair of clown fish,second picture is a close up of the polyps extended, and the third picture is of a Tyree green Sarcophyton.
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