Species Profile Sections: Info, Discussions & Photos
Info  Quick Care, Species Info, Aquarium Care & Photos
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Description
Black Tube Coral
(Tubastrea micrantha)
Quick Care FactsCare Level: Moderate
Temperament: Peaceful
Waterflow: Medium to Strong
Placement: Any
Lighting: Low
Color Form: Olive Green, Black
Supplements: Calcium, Strontium, Trace Elements
Water Conditions: 72-78° F; sg 1.023-1.025; pH 8.1-8.4; dKH 8-12
Origin: Indo-Pacific
Family: Dendrophylliidae
Species: LPS Hard Corals
Species Information
The Black Tube Coral is a large polyp stony (LPS) coral, also commonly referred to as the Black Sun Coral. It is a very dark olive green to black colonial coral, markedly different than others within the species. It is often found on reef ledges or steep reef slopes in the wild, where it feeds on drifting zooplankton. Its skeleton has tubes branching in all directions. They should be placed into rockwork and prefer to be beneath a ledge where they will be shaded from high light. They are a low light species, but do require medium to strong water movement in order to feed on zooplankton that drifts by.
Aquarium Care
Be careful when handling the Tube Coral; it can be fragile and needs to be picked up by its underside when placing it in the aquarium. Moderate to strong water current combined with low lighting levels will provide a good aquarium environment in which the Black Tube Coral can thrive. Usually, it will only expand its polyps in the evening unless it is hungry, when it may expand its polyps during the day. The tentacles have stinging cells that can shoot tiny poison darts into their prey or can even be used as a defense mechanism if necessary, but generally this species is peaceful with other if not overcrowded.
Feeding & Nutrition
While it is a hardy coral for the reef aquarium, it is classified as moderately difficult to maintain because it has special dietary needs. It is one of the few corals that does not contain the symbiotic algae zooxanthellae. Instead, it must be regularly fed vitamin-enriched brine shrimp or micro-plankton from an eyedropper directly to each of its polyps to promote rapid polyp budding. It will also benefit from the addition of calcium, strontium, and other trace elements to the water.
Additional Photos