Let’s face it, as SPS lovers most of us we started out loving the polyp waving, the bushy, skeleton burying acros like the ORA Chips or the many varieties Acropora millepora. But over the years we’ve been privileged to see some deepwater acros imported that just makes a heart sing. If you a lover of the legendary Purple Monster Acro, then you’re already a fan of deepwater acros.
These acros are much more sensitive to lighting and nutrient conditions. Living much deeper means lower light and steady low flow and more nutrient rich than the surface waters. I also tend to think that stable chemistry is even more critical to the husbandry of deepwater acros. Not to mention temperatures below 78F. This is perhaps the reason many people reporting difficulty keeping the Purple Monster Acro long term.
At the start of any trouble, the Purple Monster Acro seems the first to show signs of deterioration. I am finding this to be true of many other deepwater acroporas that have been brought in these last couple of years. Perhaps this is the reason we don’t see as many of these species in our tanks? The complete success with deepwater acros is still very much a reef keeping frontier to be further explored.
Despite the challenge, deepwater acros are admired as true reef building animals with much more variations than we ever thought. Now for the eye candy: