Commonly known as Elegance Coral, Catalaphyllia jardinei is a beautiful and evolutionary distinct species that can be found living as a lone polyp or within a colony.
Large pink tubular tentacles contrast with a rich green corallite body to give the species a unique appearance. This species is considered rare but widespread across its range where it typically inhabits shallow and turbid waters. Not surprisingly, the attractiveness of this species means it is heavily targeted in the aquarium trade. Unlike most other hard corals, this species can be found living alone (free living) as well as within colonies.
- Order: Scleractinia
- Family: Euphyllidae
- Trend: unknown
- Depth Range (m): down to 40
This coral is widespread but rare, being found across the Indo-West Pacific, from the northern Indian Ocean, Australia, Philippines and the south China Sea.
Habitat and Ecology
Catalaphyllia jardinei can be found in shallow, tropical reef environments in preferably turbid water. On the Great Barrier Reef it is typically found between 24-30m.
As a hard coral species, the polyps of this species exude calcium carbonate as they grow. This mineral compound is used to form exoskeletons (corallites) around the fleshy polyp, offering protection. Specific oceanic conditions are required for polyps to synthesize and exude calcium carbonate.