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By Bob Goemans
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Montipora

Montipora spongodes

Bernard, 1897

Velvet Stone

Likely Reef Tank Suitable

Likely Fish-Only Tank Suitable

Range: Indo-West Pacific Ocean: Widespread.

Natural Environment: Inhabits lagoon margins and rocky foreshores and usually seen at depths between 3 to 85 feet (1 - 25 m).

General Husbandry: Common in the trade.

Care should be taken as to its position in the aquarium, as this species is basically defenseless against other corals, even those that are not overly aggressive. An occasional strong wave of water movement to help keep detritus from collecting on its surfaces is highly recommended.

Even though fully capable of producing all its nutritional needs via photosynthesis, plankton-like foodstuffs fed occasionally may be beneficial/promote quicker growth.

Taxonomy:

    Kingdom: Animalia

    Phylum: Cnidaria

    Class: Anthozoa

    Subclass: Hexacorallia

    Order: Scleractinia

    Family: Acroporidae

    Genus: Montipora

FYI: An encrusting form, sometimes with thick/wide vertical columns and usually a dark brown, green or gray.

Adaptable to lower light conditions, yet cultured bright colors may fade.

Cultured specimens exist in the trade that may exhibit very bright colors, therefore ask under what PAR conditions it was grown in so you may continue to see it maintain its health/colors!

Experience Level: Intermediate

Diet: Photosynthetic/Plankton feeder

Temperament: Peaceful

Aquarium Environment: Reef or fish-only aquarium

Coral Safe: With caution

Fish Safe: Yes

Invertebrate Safe: Yes

Acclimation Time: 30 minutes+

Aquarium Hardiness: Moderate

Calcium (Ca): 380 - 430 mg/l

Alkalinity: 2.5 - 3.0 meq/l

Phosphate (PO4): <0.05 mg/l

Magnesium (Mg): approx. 1350 mg/l (relate to specific gravity)

Strontium (Sr) 8 - 10 mg/l

Temperature Range: 74 - 83°F (23 - 28°C)

Minimum Tank Size: 100 gallons

Lighting: PAR 300 - 450+

Water Movement: WM 2

Specific Gravity: 1.023 - 1.025

pH: 8.0 - 8.4

Iodine/Trace Elements Monitor/as necessary to maintain quality seawater.

 Montipora spongodes (Velvet Stone)
Photo © Tracy Gray
Montipora patula Montipora spumosa
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