Turbinaria stellulata is a widespread yet uncommon reef building species. It is found at restricted depths and is therefore susceptible to coral bleaching, a process in which coral polyps eject algal symbionts due to stress.
Colonies of this coral grow as a crust over rocky substrate as opposed to other Turbinariaspecies which develop vertically as well as laterally. Colonies can vary in colour from yellow to green to pink.
Like many EDGE coral species, we know little species specific information. However, there is evidence of an overall decline in coral reef habitats around the world.
- Order: Scleractinia
- Family: Dendrophylliidae
- Trend: unknown
- Depth Range (m): 2 - 15m
This species is found across the Indian Ocean, Red Sea, central and west Indo-Pacific to tropical Australia and American Samoa.
Habitat and Ecology
T.stellulata forms dome-shaped colonies on upper reef slopes and unlike other Turbinaria species it is rarely found in turbid waters.
This species, along with the rest of the genus, is gonochoric. This is unusual for corals and means that there are separate male and female individuals. Turbinaria stellulatacolonies spawn in synchrony, ejecting eggs and sperm en masse into the water for external fertilization.