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FAQs about Oculinid/Galaxy Coral Identification

Related Articles: Oculinids, Galaxy Corals

Related FAQs: Oculinids 1, Oculinids 2, & FAQs on: Oculinid Behavior, Oculinid Compatibility, Oculinid Selection, Oculinid Systems, Oculinid Feeding, Oculinid Health, Oculinid Reproduction/Propagation,  & Stony/True Coral, Coral System Set-Up, Coral System Lighting, Stony Coral Identification, Stony Coral Selection, Coral PlacementFoods/Feeding/Nutrition, Disease/Health, Propagation, Growing Reef CoralsStony Coral Behavior,

SPS ID     11/11/12
Hello, I would appreciate if you would identify the coral pictured below. 
The polyps are about 1/4" wide. Thank you!
<This looks to be an Oculinid, a Galaxea species. Bob Fenner> 


Coral ID Help 4/28/12
First, thank you so much for your website!
<You're welcome Stacy>
My husband bought a stocked Red Sea Max tank and brought it home for me.
Wonderful gift that we had been planning on, but I thought I had time to research what we would be putting in a tank without being thrown into the life <fire :-)> first. Your site has been VERY helpful for me to keep all my new babies alive. I was at a LFS the other day and found this very cool coral. They had no idea what it was and I have not been able to find it anywhere. It looks similar to a Galaxea coral, but it has feeding crowns like a feather duster. Could you please help me out?
<Mmm, my first guess would be as yours, a Galaxea species. The white tips are a clue as most Galaxea species exhibit white tips on their tentacles. Bob may input here as well.><<Agree. RMF>>
Thank you again for all your help!
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>

Galaxea in the Caribbean?   4/9/09
Hey Crew,
I'm aware that corals can spread through the ballast water of cargo ships, or by hitching a ride on a ships bottom. I've seen Dendros while diving Cozumel,
which surprised me (but allowed me to put some in my biotope! Woohoo!), but I was caught a bit off guard last night when reviewing a video of a dive and seeing what looks like Galaxea corals on the top of San Francisco Caves reef, and more at Columbia Shallows.
<Mmm, the family Oculinidae does exist in the tropical West Atlantic, but not the genus Galaxea... Perhaps you saw some Oculina sp.>
Are there Galaxea in that part of the Caribbean (or in the Caribbean at all) or am I mistaking them for another coral?
<I do believe the latter. Bob Fenner>

Creature ID/FAQ Direction... Oculinid Resurrection! -11/25/07 Top of the morning WWM Crew, I have browsed the site looking for some assistance with an ID. I originally purchased 2 pieces of Live Rock that were barren at the time, and since they have literally sprouted with some interesting anemone looking creatures. The first two attached are of the darker rock, upon which 15-20 tiny purple based with greenish tip organisms have appeared. They do not appear to have mouths like an anemone would, but they seem to be of the same consistency based on how they move with the water flow in the tank. The second set of pictures of are the lighter rock. I was unable to snap a picture of the backside of this rock, but many completely clear more pointed organisms are starting to emerge out of these 'chambers'. Any assistance would be appreciated, I would like to read more about these organisms, get up to speed on whats in the tank! <Haha, that's not just live rock my friend, that's coral! Apparently, whoever sold it to you thought the coral was dead and so sold it to you as "rock." But the coral (a Galaxea sp. from the looks of it) is now coming back (and spectacularly so). Congratulations! :)> Happy Holidays, -j <Gracias, y tu tambien, Sara M.>

Re: Creature ID/FAQ Direction -11/25/07 Ahhh Excellent! Thanks so much for your assistance I will read up ASAP. I did not think my 2-t8 32 watt bulbs would be sufficient to foster coral growth (55 gal tank) <Well, actually, Galaxea sp. don't need much light.> But they seem to be multiplying rapidly! <It's pleasantly surprising to me too. Especially since, if it was sold as live rock, there must not have been much more than a few bits of live tissue left. We know that, theoretically, corals can come back from even just a tiny "drop" of live tissue. But it's exciting to see it actually happen (especially when you're not even trying or don't even know it's there! lol). May I ask, what do you feed the tank? It might be helpful for people attempting to revive such dying corals to know more about your system. And please don't be shy... if your nitrates are through the roof or something, please share anyway. It's always interesting, when someone has this kind of great, unexpected success, to know all about the conditions under which it happened. :)> Diligent research incoming, thanks again! -j <Very good, but before you think about changing anything, please keep in mind that whatever you've been doing, it's been working for this coral. Best, Sara M.>

Re: Creature ID/FAQ Direction  11/26/07 Haha! Yes, I found both pieces in a live rock bin at a LFS, walked out with both for under $20. The darker rock has propagated quite a bit in the short amount of time it has been in the tank (1 week). The lighter rock is beginning to sprout the clear organisms I spoke about. Is the lighter rock a Galaxea Coral as well? <Well, it was at one time. It's hard to say if there's anything living left on it. I'm sorry I was unable to see the "clear organisms" you were referring too. It *could* be bleached out coral tissue. But I honestly don't know without a better picture (and preferably with the unknown thing circled).> Nothing to be ashamed about, I'll post the stats. I also attached a picture of the tank. I don't see anything out of the ordinary with my setup, is it normally difficult to "revive" these type of corals? <In my experience, it can be a difficult thing to do when you're deliberately trying to do it. But, as you can see (and as has happened to me too), sometimes they just come back without much aquarist effort at all. Corals are just weird that way sometimes (or they seem so because of how little we really understand about them).> 55 gal 2 t8 32 watt bulbs (actinic and full spectrum) Fluval canister filter with activated carbon. 3 Maxi-Jet 1200 Powerheads Inhabitants - O. Niger Trigger, Maroon Clown, Longnose Butterfly. Assorted Hermits and Snails. Cleaner Shrimp. Tank parameters Gravity - 1.023 PH - 8.3 Ammonia - 0 Nitrite - 0 Nitrate - 0 Temp - 78 <Your salinity and temp are a little low (1.025 and 80-82F would be better). But like I said, whatever you're doing is working so I wouldn't change anything too quickly.> I feed defrosted Mysis shrimp once daily soaked in Selcon. <Hmmm... maybe the Selcon is helping? The strong water flow certainly doesn't hurt.> I was not planning on changing anything (if its not broke....) but I was curious if I needed to supplement feedings/care requirements of the coral. Will research the FAQs. -j <Here are some links to help you out: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/oculinidae.htm http://www.wetwebmedia.com/galaxycfaqs.htm http://wetwebfotos.com/Home?actionRequest=articleView&articleID=299 http://www.asira.org/galaxea They're actually not considered "easy" corals to keep. They feed on small particle food and, when healthy, can be extremely aggressive. If/as this coral continues to grow/thrive, it will probably need to be feed more and maybe given some space. But as they say in AA... best to take it "one day at a time." :-) Good luck and thank you for sharing about your coral/system, Sara M.>

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