• LIGHT: HIGH (300-450 par) is what we find best although this coral can handle upwards of 600-800 par if the correct alkalinity and nutrition is provided. We see many people have more success at the recommended 300-400 par. You can learn more about Lighting and it's overall impact on your reef tank in our article Lighting and your Reef Tank

  • FOOD: We haven't noticed that any specific feeding strategy is required for Acropora corals but we have noted they seem to like amino acids which help with growth and coloration. Like most corals they capture nutrients from the water and will do best when supplied a healthy amount of food. Our method is high import, high export. You can learn more about Feeding and Filtration in our article Feeding, Filtration and your Reef Tank.

  • FLOW: HIGH. Acorpora corals benefit from high, turbid, water movement which will be enough to keep the coral clean of any detritus while bringing adequate food to its very small polyps. Too much flow, however can still be a problem. Acropora can be damaged from DIRECT flow and if too much flow is provided Acropora polyps will not likely extend. Too much flow, especially direct flow, can cause damage to the coral's tissue or an inability to capture food. You can read more about Flow and its overall impact on your reef tank in our article Flow and your Reef Tank

  • DIFFICULTY: EXPERT. Acorpora are among the most difficult of all the corals to keep while at the same time being available in many variety of aquaculture specimens. This is almost an oxymoron. This is because while although expert in difficulty, when the correct parameters and stability are achieved and maintained Acropora become some of the easiest, fastest growing corals to keep and have no issues thriving long term in captivity. Like with all corals, specimens have been seen to do well in captivity when the right combination of Food/Light/Flow and Filtration are achieved. 

  • PRICE: HIGH. Acropora are among the most desirable corals in the hobby. Often sold as frags with colony prices these corals sport beautiful colors and unique growth patterns which make them one of the most iconic corals in the hobby. When people think of corals, they often think of Acropora. There is nothing quite like a thriving reef aquarium full of colorful, healthy Acropora. Acropora are very difficult to keep, and even more so to color up. The color of Acropora corals can shift dramatically based on the nutrients and lighting being provided where as many LPS do not. Acropora are highly susceptible to white band disease, RTN (Rapid Tissue Necrosis) and STN (Slow Tissue Necrosis) and for every wild species tamed in captivity many other wild species were lost. Only offered through a select amount of vendors, these factors contribute to their high price. 

  • COLLECTION ZONE: Indo-Pacific

  • SCIENTIFIC NAME: Acropora is a genus of small polyp stony coral in the phylum Cnidaria. Some of its species are known as table coral, elkhorn coral, and staghorn coral. Over 149 species are described with some being more difficult to keep than others.

  • AGGRESSION: PEACEFUL. We haven't noticed much aggressions out of this type of coral however we still recommend allowing some space for growth and health. We recommend providing at least 2" space and we recommend not allowing Acropora corals to come in contact with each other or to become shaded out by growth.

  • NATURAL TEMPERATURE: 82 °F / 28 °C  although most corals can adapt and survive in temps as low as 77 degrees and as high as 84 degrees. You can read more about temperature and how it affects your reef tank in our article Temperature and your Reef Tank.

  • PH: Recommend 8.0-8.4, we tend to run around 8.2-8.3 over 24 hours. You can read more about pH in our article pH and your Reef Tank

  • NITRATE: 5-10, try to keep stable. You can read more about nitrate and our approach to maintaining it in our article Nutrients and your Reef Tank

  • PHOSPHATE: 0.05-0.1, try to keep stable. You can read more about Phosphate and our approach to maintaining it in our article Nutrients and your Reef Tank

  • ALKALINITY: Recommend 8-9 dKh. You can read more about how we maintain our alkalinity in our article Alkalinity, Calcium and your Reef Tank

  • CALCIUM: Recommend 400-450. You can read more about how we maintain our calcium in our article Alkalinity, Calcium and your Reef Tank

More About Acropora Corals

Acropora corals are small polyp stony (SPS) corals that belong to the Acroporidae family.  There are over 149 known species of Acropora, making it the largest genus of corals. Depending on the species, Acropora corals may grow as plates or as branches. Found mostly in shades of green and brown, some Acropora species can be found in vibrant colors.

Acropora corals require high lighting. We recommend 250-600 PAR depending on the specific species of Acropora. Bear in mind that most corals can be gradually adapted to lighting conditions outside of their normal preferences. Acropora corals also prefer moderately strong water flow in which the flow path is alternating. Please note, these corals are very sensitive to changes in water parameters. Any changes you implement must be gradual.

Through their symbiotic relationship with a photosynthetic algae, known as zooxanthellae, they receive many of their nutrients.  Acropora corals may benefit from targeted feeding with rotifers and vitamins. To maintain good health, calcium, strontium, and other trace elements should be monitored and added as needed.

Be sure to provide enough personal space for your Acropora corals to grow and thrive. Acropora corals CAN sting each other but typically only if they are allowed to touch.

AcroporaAcroporidaeCoralCoral care guideReefReefchaserSps

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