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Red Octocoral - (no longer available)
 
 
 
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Price Elsewhere: $36.99
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Tank Stats
Size: 12 inches +
Care Level: Moderate
Temperament: Peaceful
Reef Safe: Yes
Diet: Strong Flow, Plankton
Origin: Caribbean
Acclimation Time: Temperature Acclimate
Coral Safe: Yes
Invertebrate Safe: Yes
Minimum Tank Size:
Size : 12 inches +
  
  

The Red Octocoral is softer and more flexible animals than the hard corals or stony corals. Octocoral species has polyps that contain eight tentacles. The best feature about this coral is that it can take many forms including branching, encrusting, whip-like, feather-like, fleshy and even a few calcareous like structures. Rather than creating larger skeletal masses, most of these corals have teeny little skeletal pieces buried inside, called spicules or sclerites. On some of these spicules, tiny internal support-type rods are built that are used to anchor to the substrate. Instead of calcium, the Red Octocoral has a protein based, flexible material that contributes to its structure. The Red Octocoral is similar to the horn material of a mammal, thus leading to the alternate names of "horn corals" or "horny corals". Feeding this coral is not a primary issue because the Red Octocoral is photosynthetic and has zooxanthellae inside its tissue that helps it to manufacture food and derives energy. Apart from this, the Red Octocoral captures planktonic organisms and microscopic food particles from the water column and absorbs dissolved organic matter. Since it is quite hardy and easy to keep, the Red Octocoral makes a good choice for a beginner aquarist. It is beautiful and impressive specimen in the tank, which makes it a must-have coral in your tank. The Red Octocoral produces toxin that can be released to ward off competition for space. Make sure to handle it with precaution as its toxin can inflict wounds to humans. Extensive filtration with foam fractionator along with activated carbon is advised to remove and control some of the toxin produced in the tank. With the help of feathery tentacles, the Red Octocoral feeds on micro plankton by ensnaring it and then retracts it to pull the prey in.

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