As proper coral nerd, we’re always on the lookout for different corals, regardless of their aquarium suitability. Diving around the world, we regularly come across this genus of coral in the shallow water, and never really understood, why these gorgeous coral are never to be seen in the aquarium scene. And our best bet, is the lack of information and tease… so here we go!
The funny thing, is that this Coscinaraea columna is actually a very common, shallow water, protected turbid bay all over the Indo-Pacific. We found many in Indonesia, and we found a lot in Australia too. As usual, we are always more interested by dirty reefs than clean reefs, as we always find some odd corals in there. While clear offshore reefs, tend to be more predictable and god knows, we love weird corals!
So in Australia during the monsoon, access to the offshore reefs is not easy, as conditions are never good enough. Anyway together with Nic from Ultra Coral Australia, we found some very nice specimen of the Coscinaraea, on the dirty shallow reefs around Mackay.
This normally massive or encrusting coral develop some small bumps/nodules in the very shallow water while it tends to plate out in deeper water. This coral is absolutely glowing on these shallow reefs. Under Natural sunlight the bright pink color is really awesome. Unfortunately blue light is not really the best light to pop out bright pink, which become more of a pale dark purple. But for some of you that still like bright white light, it’s a very colorful coral.
We found few specimen with green tentacles, that would make very interesting aquarium corals. Hopefully some will be shipped in the near future, and we will find out, how it turns out in the reef tank world. We sincerely believe that some of these have a great potential.
It’s found in very shallow reefs, in less than 10 feet (3m) deep, bathed in intense bright light all day long. And dipping in the food soup during the monsoon season, when the shallow water, just below the surface becomes a concentrated planktonic potage. So it’s a heavy feeder, with tentacles extended during the day. From our farming experience, it’s also a fast grower, given the right conditions.
We’re sure, that we will start to see more of this coral in the near future!