Staghorn Coral
Acropora sp.

Photo
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Range and habitat:
The genus Acropora is one of the most widespread genera of corals, spanning the Red Sea, the Indian and Pacific Oceans and the tropical region of the western Atlantic Ocean.

Natural diet:
Staghorn coral are sessile, colonial invertebrates. Their anemone-like polyps feed at night and retract into the calcified coral skeleton during the day. Acropora polyps are symbiotic with a type of algae called zooxanthellae, from which they receive oxygen and energy. The algae are sheltered by the coral and use the carbon dioxide and other coral waste as nutrients.

Size / weight range:
Acropora sp. colonies can live for centuries, but individual coral polyps usually live for 2 to 3 years.

Interesting facts:
All stony corals are listed in Appendix II of CITES, so international trade is limited by permit.

The genus Acropora is extremely speciose and the largest extant reef-building coral genus. Recent revisions of the genus recognize approximately 180 different species.

Location at The Toledo Zoo:
Aquarium

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