Scientific Name Chironephthya sy

Common Name: (among aquarists) Dendronephthya

Colour: Pink, purple, red, yellow, orange.

Distinguishing Characteristics: Branchy soft corals with appearance somewhere between gorgonians and Dendronephthya, with brightly colored spicules and polyps. In some species drooping branches arise from an upright stalk, in others the entire colony is upright (Gosliner, et a/., 1996). The branches tend to be rather stout and end abruptly, there is no tapering off as in other soft corals. The polyps are located in veiy spiny calyces, with very thick and large sclerites. The polyps are most concentrated at the ends of the branches. Able to expand with water or deflate into small tangle of stiff branches. Sclerites afford a rough texture. Non-photosynthetic.

Natural Habitat: Lives in areas with strong tidal currents or surge. May occur partially out in the light, especially on steep walls, but usually found shaded under a ledge. Often upside down, hanging from the roof of a cave, or out in the current stream attached to a projection off the reef wall. Chironephthya are found from east Africa to southern Japan, Philippines, New Guinea, Indonesia, Solomon Islands, Australia, and Micronesia (Gosliner, et a!., 1996).

Aquarium Care: Difficult but possible to keep. Not recommended to beginners. Chironephthya are somewhat hardier than Dendronephthya, but require special care with regard to feeding. Place Chironephthya sideways or upside-down in a strong or intermittently strong current flow. Feed zooplankton or substitute, possibly also phytoplankton. Also stir up detritus from the bottom substrate when the polyps are out and feeding.

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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