There is a wide range of coral species available for reef and saltwater aquariums. This can be overwhelming when owners decide to buy live coral to set up a new aquarium or add to an existing one. There are also many factors to consider that make a difference in how well the coral adjusts to the new surroundings. The speed of water flow, the lighting, and the type of fish present determine how successful the addition will be when placed in the aquarium.
One way to ensure successful placement is to select a coral that requires little maintenance, is tolerant of average tank conditions, and provides many colors. The Ricodea species, also known as flower mushroom coral, is popular among aquarium owners because it provides the majority of its own nutrition through the photosynthesis process and is reasonably priced. This coral will catch zoo-plankton-type foods, such as brine and mysis shrimp, which completes the coral’s nutritional needs.
Most people buy mushroom coral for the vibrant colors that include orange, green, blue, and neon-green, among others. Some coral contains three colors in the same specimen. The outer caps can be one color, the caps another color, and the center a third color. The variety of sizes makes this a flexible choice for both small and large tanks.
The best lighting conditions for this coral to be healthy and maintain the most vibrant color is moderate to bright. Aquariums with LED or T5 lighting are perfect for mushroom coral. Water flow makes little difference because small polyps mean the coral has flexible movement.
If the tank includes aggressive feeding fish, it is important to provide enough zoo-plankton foods for the coral to get proper nutrition. Gloves are needed when handling this coral due to the toxic exterior slime coating that protects it from predators. Those setting up a reef aquarium will have less to consider regarding aggressive fish and predators of coral.
Comparing selection and pricing is a definite factor for owners. Buying live fish and coral at a local fish store is preferable because the purchase will be in the tank sooner than waiting for them to arrive via carrier from an E-commerce store. The selection and pricing are better online, depending on which website is chosen. Place a minimum order online to determine if the quality is acceptable.