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Purple Acropora Coral
(Acropora sp.)
Quick Care FactsCare Level: Difficult
Temperament: Peaceful
Waterflow: Strong
Placement: All
Lighting: High
Color Form: Purple
Supplements: Calcium, Trace Elements
Water Conditions: 72-80° F; sg 1.023-1.025; pH 8.1-8.4; dKH 8-12
Origin: Fiji, Indo-Pacific
Family: Acroporidae
Species: SPS Hard Corals
Species Information
Purple Acropora Coral represent a particular color form of the widely varied and popular Acropora Coral. Purple Acropora Corals vary in color from deep dark purples to lighter almost violet shades of purple. They are one of the more uncommon color forms found within the hobby, which makes them both highly desirable and more expensive than more common color morphs.
Acropora Corals in general include a wide variety of different species of Acropora corals with many different color and growth forms. Acropora corals found within the aquarium hobby (including Purple Acropora Corals) are available in a variety of growth forms that are according to size and shape of the branches, the position of the branches, the number of corallite septa and the nature of the coenosteum.
The most commonly available aquarium species tend to fall into the following growth forms: branching, bushy, cluster, finger, bottlebrush and tabular, with bushy being by far the most commonly available within the hobby. Prices for Acropora Corals also vary widely based on the size, growth form and coloration of a specific specimen, with lighter purple colored bushy corals representing the least expensive and finger, branching and tabular specimens with a dark purple coloration making up the high end of the market. Purple Acropora Corals are available within the aquarium hobby, but are considered semi-rare which typically brings a higher price tag and limited availability.
Aquarium Care
The Purple Acropora Coral is considered a difficult species to keep within the home aquarium due to their requirements of strong intense lighting and strong (non-direct) water flow. To properly recreate these conditions within the marine aquarium environment is often difficult and expensive as high-end lighting systems and sophisticated controlled water pumps are costly. However, when provided with the correct environment Acropora corals are fast growers that will spread quickly over the reef.
Generally speaking, Acropora species with thick branches are normally more difficult to keep than those with thin branches. This is most likely because of the inability of reef aquarists to provide enough water flow that the thick branched species need to thrive, thus making these species more prone initially to problems. Water flow is important to corals as it provides them supplemental food sources like phyto & zooplankton and removes waste products excreted from the coral. This is especially important in the case of the Acropora Coral as it is a fast growing species which creates more waste products then other corals, which need to be quickly and efficiently moved away form the coral in order for it to thrive.
Brown specimens, bottlebrush and thin branched species tend to be more tolerant of the lower water flow and light level conditions. Tabletop species are among the most difficult Acropora species to keep in the home reef aquarium, with staghorn specimens being somewhere in the middle. Captive-bred or frag specimens seem to be generally healthier and easier to care for than wild specimens.
Nonetheless, all Acropora specimens seem to prefer strong, random or mixing type water current with intense lighting and high levels of calcium and strontium to promote maximum growth and health. Water quality should also be excellent and very stable, thus Acropora do much better in established reef aquariums where water parameters are generally more stable.
Feeding & Nutrition
Purple Acropora Corals receive most of their nutritional from photosynthesis, but also benefit from planktonic foods that it filters from the water column. Hobbyists should provide weekly to bi-weekly feedings of phytoplankton, zooplankton or equivalent foods to the Coral in order to provide them a complete nutritional diet for improved health, coloration and growth rate.
Additional Photos