Article by Groshan Fabiola
There are so many different live cultured corals to choose from, each with their own unique colors and movements; many aquarium owners find that they don’t even need saltwater fish to create a lively underwater reef environment. It is common for marine hobbyists to start with echinopora corals such as the Echinopora Chalice Four Piece Frag Set, which includes a combination of frags that are all about one inch in size. Echinophyllia corals, which are a newly discovered genus in the reef aquarium hobby, have become another popular choice for saltwater enthusiasts. These and other corals are so complex and aesthetically appealing that many people aren’t even inclined to buy saltwater fish to liven up their aquariums.
Echinopora corals are extremely popular in the reef aquarium hobby because they are typically very easy to maintain as long as there is moderate lighting and moderate water flow. These live cultured corals thrive in a variety of lighting conditions, such as fluorescent bulbs and MH bulbs. People like these because they are fun to watch in the tank and they grow and change into different colors over extended periods of time. Hobbyists often watch their echinopora chalice grow into wildly colorful morphs, making for an even more interesting experience.
Echinophyllia corals have quickly found a fan base in the reef aquarium hobby world even though this genus was only recently discovered. And in that short period of time, Echinophyllia aspera has become the most common member of the genus. These corals are so well received because they come in bright colors such as red, pink and green, and they are good for beginners due to a slow growth rate, easy-medium level of maintenance and a medium level of hardiness. Echinophyllia can sometimes produce sweeper tentacles, however, and they are capable of a significant degree of chemical aggression towards nearby corals.
The variety of live cultured corals on the market is so extensive that it would be difficult to list all the possibilities in one place. The Echinopora and Echinophyllia are two popular genera, but there are many other choices each with their own unique benefits and drawbacks. The wide selection of options is just one more reason to consider a reef aquarium that relies solely on corals rather than saltwater fish.
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