Zoanthus Sociatus

Colour: Brown usually, often with green oral disc. Sometimes mostly green, sometimes with white marbling or white stripes. The shade of brown ranges from straw colored to chocolate, often with slight reddish hue like cinnamon.

Distinguishing Features: Gigantic polyps compared to other members of the genus. Polyps to at least 5 cm (2 in.) diameter. Otherwise quite like other members of the genus.

Similar Species: Protopalythoa variabilis from the Caribbean wlien found in deep water may resemble this species, but the polyps are not nearly as large. Protopalythoa grandis may be circumtropical or there may be a closely related species found in the Indo-Pacific (Colin and Arneson, 1995).

Natural Habitat: Deep water reefs and hardbottoms in the Caribbean. Found covering large areas of hardbottom in some localities at about 100 feet or more depth. Found in the Northern Gulf of Mexico and off the central east coast of Florida. Tolerates relatively cold water, and therefore may range as far north as the Carolinas, though we have not seen that range reported.

Aquarium Care: Very easy to care for. Does not tolerate very bright direct illumination, and will bleach and remain closed in response. Provide medium intensity light. Blue fluorescent light will enhance fluorescent green or cinnamon colour. Feed often with flake food, chopped fish, or chopped clam meat.

Reproduction: Asexual reproduction by budding of daughter polyps as is typical for other members of this genus. Sexual reproduction not studied.

Genus Spbenopus

Spbenopus is a genus that is seldom encountered by aquarists. It is distinguished by its solitary polyp existence as opposed to the colonial nature of other members of the order Zoantharia. Found in sandy or muddy areas, the base of the polyp extends into the sand and the capitulum is extended at night to feed. They do not contain zooxanthellae. The reader is directed to Colin and Arneson (1995) for a photo.

Genus Zoanthus Lamarck, 1801

Zoanthus Brown

Zoanthus sp. J. C. Delbeek

Zoanthus sociatus. J. Sprung

Zoanthus Sociatus

Zoanthus sp. Despite their large size these are clearly Zoanthus. Note their blunt tentacles, multicoloured oral discs and lack of sand on the column. J. C. Delbeek

The COMPLETE guide to Aquariums

The COMPLETE guide to Aquariums

The word aquarium originates from the ancient Latin language, aqua meaning water and the suffix rium meaning place or building. Aquariums are beautiful and look good anywhere! Home aquariums are becoming more and more popular, it is a hobby that many people are flocking too and fish shops are on the rise. Fish are generally easy to keep although do they need quite a bit of attention. Puppies and kittens were the typical pet but now fish are becoming more and more frequent in house holds. In recent years fish shops have noticed a great increase in the rise of people wanting to purchase aquariums and fish, the boom has been great for local shops as the fish industry hasnt been such a great industry before now.

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