Caring for Coral: Where to Start

Keeping and adding coral to your marine aquarium can be a beautiful experience. With recent changes in technology and availability of important care information, keeping coral no longer has to be an intimidating endeavor.

If it’s your first time caring for marine invertebrates, here are a few of our favorite types of coral to begin cut your teeth on:

  1. Button Polyps
    Suitable for a beginner’s reef , Button Polyps are relatively inexpensive and survive in low light environments. Available in various colors, including browns and greens, this friendly coral variety don’t even require supplemental feedings. They can readily survive feeding on creatures common to most reef type setups.
  2. Xenia
    A wonderful focal point for most marine applications, these pulsating, lower spectrum light coral grow rapidly and provide constant pulsing movement to bring your reef alive. Care should be taken to avoid overpopulation, especially in smaller nano type setups, as these can easily overtake other slower growing coral. They can also be a good gauge of your salinity as their pulsating tends to slow when salinity is out of range or changes rapidly.
  3. Hammer Coral
    Known for its hammer or anchor-like appearance, this rainbow-colored coral is available in two skeleton forms: wall or branching. Be warned that they will sting other coral and require ample room to remain happy.
  4. Green Star Polyps
    Another excellent coral for beginning aquarists, Green Star Polyps are one of the easiest types of coral to care for. They do well in a range of low to high level light environments, as well as tolerate varying water flows.
  5. Sun Corals
    Appropriately named for its bright orange, sunburst-like arms, these spherical corals are known for their beautiful colors and reaching tentacles. It is important to be sure you have more flow over your sun coral area to find success.