Species Profile Sections: Info, Discussions & Photos
Info  Quick Care, Species Info, Aquarium Care & Photos
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Orange Tree Gorgonian
(Swiftia exserta)
Quick Care FactsCare Level: Difficult
Temperament: Peaceful
Waterflow: Strong
Placement: Bottom
Lighting: Low
Color Form: Orange, Red
Supplements: Iodine, Calcium, Strontium, Trace elements
Water Conditions: 72-78º F; sg 1.023-1.025; pH 8.1-8.4
Origin: Caribbean
Family: Anthothelidae
Species: Sea Fans
Species Information
The Orange Tree Gorgonian is also commonly referred to within the aquarium hobby as the Orange Sea Fan or Orange Tree coral. It is either orange or orange/red in color and has loose branches forming a fan shape with large red or orange polyps. The Orange Tree Gorgonian is a very impressive species that will make a great showpiece or centerpiece for any reef aquarium. Like other Sea Fans the Orange Tree Gorgonian is very difficult to keep within the aquarium environment and requires specialized care by expert aquarists in a well established reef aquarium in order to survive and thrive.
Aquarium Care
While the Orange Tree Gorgonian is a peaceful species, it should be given adequate space away from neighboring corals or anemones, so that it is not damaged and has room to grow. This species is generally anchored to the reef through the use of underwater epoxy, which can anchor its base to a piece of live rock within the reef aquarium.
The Orange Tree Gorgonian is a very challenging species to maintain, as they require supplemental feeding several times per week. The Orange Tree Gorgonian is not photosynthetic and only requires a low level of lighting to ward off a build-up of micro algae, but it will require a stronger water flow and the addition of iodine, calcium, strontium, and other trace elements to the water to thrive.
Feeding & Nutrition
Because the Orange Tree Gorgonian is not photosynthetic, its survival is dependent on regular and frequent feedings of brine shrimp, baby brine shrimp, or foods designed for filter feeding invertebrates; such as, marine snow or phytoplankton. Do not allow cyanobacteria to form on the branches, as it will cause both the polyps and tissue of the coral to rapidly deteriorate. The Orange Tree Gorgonian should only be attempted by expert reef aquarist within a well established reef aquarium.
Additional Photos