The Stubby Finger Leather Coral is a soft coral, which is very easy to maintain and is therefore quite a popular species among marine aquarium hobbyists. As it grows, it develops a folded appearance. The Stubby Finger Leather Coral is peaceful and requires adequate space between them and other corals. It makes a very good choice for a beginner. The Stubby Finger Leather Coral develops heavy mucous coatings when stressed, and if this is not immediately blown from the coral, it can develop an accumulation of bacteria that may lead to illness. It is an autozooid type, which all its polyps for feeding, and none for water movement. It is non-aggressive towards other invertebrates, and reproduces asexually by fission. The Stubby Finger Leather Coral thrives well in a temperature range of 72-78 degrees Fahrenheit and pH of 8.10-8.40. It requires medium to high lighting and medium to strong water flow in the marine aquarium. The flow of water should be regulated properly since the Stubby Finger Leather Coral sheds its mucous coating. It can be placed anywhere in the tank and needs ample space to expand itself in the tank. The Stubby Finger Leather Coral might secrete toxins that may prove to be harmful for stony corals in your marine aquarium. The Stubby Finger Leather Coral derives its nutrition from the zooxanthellae that dwells inside its tissue. The zooxanthellae performs photosynthesis and helps in manufacturing food for this coral. For its continued health, it can also be fed with baby brine shrimps, meaty bits, zooplankton and phytoplankton, along with some trace elements such as strontium and iodine.
Leather Corals live in the shallow waters of Tropical Seas & Oceans in all parts of the world, and inhabit Reef Slopes and Lagoons. Leathers will go through a phase when they shrink their Polyps, and secrete a layer of mucus on their body, to be shed later. The mucus coat prevents any algal growth on Leather Corals. Moderate flow must be provided to help them shed this mucus layer or it can suffocate the coral.Leather Corals are moderately hardy creatures, which make them interesting additions to your tank due to their unique fleshy body and colors, especially Browns and Grays. Leather Corals do not have an exoskeleton and their skin has a tough, leathery touch.These easy to care for corals are great for the beginner and do not require high lighting. They do need moderate light and moderate flow.Corals are part of a biological group known as Cnidaria. Most Cnidaria have a mouth,or mouths, that opens into one big body cavity. Due to the lack of a true digestivesystem, this cavity acts in its place and after the food is broken down thenutrients are then sent through the rest of the body as food. There is also noexcretory system; therefore the waste is sent back through the mouth or secretedinto the surrounding water.Tentacles of varying size will usually surround the mouth of Cnidaria. Most Cnidariahave tentacles with stinging cells that can shoot tiny poison darts into their preyor can even be used as a defense mechanism. Some corals lack tentacles and insteadcover themselves with a thin layer of mucus and use that to collect bacteria andplankton as food. Some corals even use both of these methods. Cnidaria can either bean individual animal or members of a complex colony. These "Colony Corals" share thefood and nutrients taken in by each individual.Corals have tiny living organisms that actually live in their tissue. These arecalled zooxanthellae and they are the reason why such strong lighting is needed inthe saltwater aquarium. These algae-like creatures provide the coral with oxygen andother nutrients that are produced during photosynthesis. During this process, thezooxanthellae take up carbon dioxide and provide nutrients to the coral.Corals can use two different types of defense mechanisms. One of which is a sweepertentacle wherein the coral reaches its tentacles out to try to damage another coralwith nematocysts. The other is when the coral releases a minute amount of toxin intothe water to poison another coral within certain proximity.Photo by Saltwaterfish.com member: petjunkie