Corals that are commonly kept in home aquariums can be broken down into 4 main categories- Soft corals, Anemones, LPS, and SPS. Each of these types requires different care and can be broken down further into several main genuses. Some things to take into consideration when selecting corals include sensitivity, color, defensive mechanisms, light and flow requirements, mobility, size, and type which can vary greatly among species. Many species of coral contain special photosynthetic algae called zooxanthallae that help to provide them with a food source, but knowing the correct foods to supplement with is also important. Some species like the SPS (Small Polyp Stony) corals are more sensitive to water chemistry and are physically more delicate than the LPS (Large Polyp Stony) corals which are more forgiving and fleshier. Other species like Anemones can be kind and generous as they “host” Clownfish, but they can also be incredibly aggressive and move easily around a tank causing trouble. Corals are such a diverse group of animals that we are learning more about every day and hobbyists are eager to participate as they get to enjoy beautiful relaxing aquascapes in their homes.


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