Blastomuusa vivida is a species that was officially recognized as recently as 2014 but there’s really a lot to appreciate about this particular species, especially over at Pacific East Aquaculture. DOn’t get us wrong, Blastomussa wellsi ain’t no slouch either but Blastomussa vivida is the master of real showy polyps with rainbows of colors and patterns.
Normally we’re lucky enough to spotlight one showpiece colony of Blastomussa at a time but the folks over at Pacific East sure do have a soft spot for this fleshy, slow growing coral as evidenced by the nearly one hundred pieces they have on offer. Better yet, this living catalogue of Blastomussa vivida is being offered at very reasonable prices, especially compared to the price of a ‘regular’ red & green Blastomussa wellsi.
We are especially fond of the very largest single polyps with ornate tentacles and small bubbles or vesicles around their perimeter, showing their clear affinity with the Plerogyra bubble corals that genetic testing has shown them to be related to. Even if it’s hard to see the link between Blastomussa and Plerogyra these two coral groups are the ones most commonly found on vertical walls and especially the sides of sunken ships demonstrating that they also have a similar affinity for walls and vertical habitats.
We haven’t combed through and visually inspected every single Blasto at PEA to verify that they are all B. vivida but we can be fairly certain that the majority of them, with their large primary polyps and expansive oral discs are probably of this recently described species from the Indo-Pacific. A few of the smaller-polyped offerings of Blasto could be some very nice examples of B. wellsi as well but nevertheless, there’s some real connoisseurs of this beloved coral genus over at Pacific East Aquaculture. [PEA]