The official name for this strange and beautiful coral is the Favia coral, but it’s more commonly known as Moon Coral, Star Coral, Closed Brain Coral, and Honeycomb Coral. These corals grow in large, dome-shaped colonies with colors ranging from green, brown, and yellow to brighter red, orange, and blue.
Moon Corals typically grow in warm, tropical waters in parts of Africa, Australia, and Japan. Luckily, this coral species hasn’t been over-harvested and is still growing well in the oceans. Moon Coral is an inexpensive and easy-to-find coral. Its care level makes it an excellent choice for beginners, and its attractive looks make it suitable for all collectors.
Like other corals, Moon Corals have developed various feeding strategies. They receive some of their nutrients through a symbiotic relationship with zooxanthellae—a type of marine algae. For additional nutrition, these corals capture food particles and absorb dissolved organic matter.
When kept in captivity, Moon Corals should be fed at night when their tentacles are out. They’ll be happy to receive shrimp, fish, and mysis. It would be best if you fed these corals once a week at the very least. With regular meals, you’ll see them growing quite well!
Although Moon Corals are tolerant of all kinds of lighting conditions, they still need adequate lighting and prefer sharper light during day time. It’s also crucial that these corals have enough water movement. You should change around 20% of the aquarium per month, 10% every other week, or 5% every week.
Experienced hobbyists recommend 5% weekly water changes. This will replenish most of the additives your water requires, so you’ll save money on purchasing additives. It’s important to note that you may still need additional additives to keep adequate levels for good growth if you have coral with calcareous skeletons.
Moon Corals make an attractive and durable addition to home tanks when their needs are taken care of, and this is relatively simple. One of the few potential issues to which this type of coral is susceptible is hair algae. However, with sufficient water movement in the aquarium, this should not be a problem.
These corals may be beautiful, but they’re not particularly friendly towards other corals. They can be pretty aggressive to tank mates. They tend to extend their long sweeper tentacles at night and attack other corals in the tanks. Because of this, it’s best to keep space between Moon Corals and others in community tanks.
As long as they’re given sufficient space from others, these corals will do well with reef-safe invertebrates and most fish. Remember that sweeper tentacles can be longer than you think, so make sure they’re as far away from possible rival corals.
Moon Corals can live for centuries in the wild. They don’t usually live that long in captivity, but they can still easily outlive their owners. Be sure to write your favorite coral into your will!