• LIGHT: LOW-MODERATE (75-150 par) is what we find best and this will depend a little on the species of mushroom. We see rhodactis do very well at low lighting and we have also seen discosoma do well closer to 150 par. Overall these corals seem adaptable to a variety of lighting conditions. 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 these corals. 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: LOW-MODERATE. Mushrooms corals are actually anemones rather than actual corals. Their polyps aren't overly sensitive to water movement and it's important to keep detritus clear. Too much flow may cause the mushroom to detach from its plug or fitting and seek a new location within the aquarium. Like goldilocks you want it to be just right. 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: BEGINNER. Mushroom corals are easy to care for can grow nicely in ideal conditions. They are not very susceptible to coral diseases like STN, RTN, and the like. Mushroom are a type of anemone and do not have a calcium carbonate skeleton and therefor do not require extreme maintenance of Calcium and Alkalinity. 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: LOW-MODERATE. Mushrooms are fairly easy to care for, available through aquaculture and grow at a decent rate. It is for these reasons that the prices tend to be low-moderate depending on the specific color morph of the specimen. Obviously very rare and unique colorations can go for considerably more than basic varieties.

  • COLLECTION ZONE: Indo-Pacific

  • SCIENTIFIC NAME: Rhodactis howesii is a species of marine cnidarian in the order Corallimorpharia, a sea anemone-like corallimorph found on reefs in tropical regions of the Pacific Ocean. Ricordea florida is a species of coral of the family Ricordeidae and the order Corallimorpharia, whose members are also called false corals. Actinodiscus spp. are mushrooms, mushroom anemones, disc anemones, and mushroom corals. Often refered to as Discosoma Mushrooms they tend to prefer low-moderate intensity light. 

  • AGGRESSION: AGGRESSIVE. Mushroom corals especially when growing in numbers and colonizing can contribute to Alleopathy (chemical warfare). We recommend running activated carbon on any system that is going to have an abundance of mushrooms.

  • 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: While these are soft corals and are not consumers of calcium/alkalinity as they do not lay a calcium carbonate skeleton, we still recommend 8-9 dKh. You can read more about how we maintain our alkalinity in our article Alkalinity, Calcium and your Reef Tank

  • CALCIUM: While these are soft corals and are not consumers of calcium/alkalinity as they do not lay a calcium carbonate skeleton, we still recommend 400-450 Calcium. You can read more about how we maintain our calcium in our article Alkalinity, Calcium and your Reef Tank

More About Mushroom Corals

An especially resilient member of the Corallimorpharia Order, Discosoma Mushrooms are an excellent choice for the Reef Chaser looking for a pop of color and an “almost immortal” coral. Most species of Discosoma are disc-shaped. They are found in a wide variety of colors, textures, and patterns. And they can reproduce themselves pretty quickly.

Discosoma Mushrooms are easy to maintain. Mushrooms, in general, are pretty hardy. Low water flow is preferred. Discosoma mushrooms also prefer low to moderate light. We recommend around 50-100 PAR. If your Discosoma gets too much light and/or water movement, it will just detach and float around the tank until it finds a more suitable home. Discosoma do tend to have more trouble reattaching themselves to a substrate, so try to pick the best spot to avoid a floating Discosoma.

Through their symbiotic relationship with a photosynthetic algae, known as zooxanthellae, they receive many of their nutrients. They also filter-feed on the nutrients in the water column. Adding amino acids or additional foods like microplankton may give your Discosoma mushroom a nutritional boost.

When introducing a new mushroom to your reef, please take into consideration that all mushrooms are semi-aggressive. They don't usually start trouble but, like many mushrooms, they need their space to grow, thrive, and colonize.

CoralCoral care guideCorallimorphariaDiscosomaMushroomReefReefchaser

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