Turbinaria peltata is an attractive and often colourful coral species that is heavily harvested for the aquarium trade.
Large tentacle laden polyps emerge during the day to feed and, like other species within its genus; Turbinaria peltata is a zooxanthellae coral, housing small photosynthetic algae through which it gains nutrients and energy.
There is no species-specific population information, however it is thought to be widespread and common throughout its range but has suffered extensive population reductions due to loss of coral reef habitat.
- Order: Scleractinia
- Family: Dendrophylliidae
- Trend: unknown
- Depth Range (m): 1 - 25
This is a wide ranging species which can be encountered on shallow tropical reef systems across the Indian Ocean, West and Central Pacific Ocean and the South China Sea.
Habitat and Ecology
Turbinaria peltata is an ecologically important reef building coral species which occurs on shallow, sandy reef flats between depths of 9-20m. It is critical in providing a significant proportion of benthic cover in reef habitats. Its large twisting, overlapping plates offer refuge for reef dwelling animals such as fish and vertebrates and larger colony structures can alter microclimates to benefit smaller coral species.