Within the collective of corals classified as “Large Polyp Stony Corals”, we find what many reef hobbyists consider the ultimate collector’s corals: The Chalice Corals. Aptly named for their cup-like appearance, these corals from the family Pectinidae come from 6 different genera, and are some of the most coveted and attractive corals in the hobby.
Chalice corals tend to come from deeper or sheltered areas on the reef, so they generally favor low to moderate lighting and water movement. However, many hobbyists have acclimated their Chalice Corals to higher lighting conditions in their aquariums with much success. Although they derive much nutrition from their zooxanthellae, these corals may be easily target fed at the “eyes” (feeding polyps) using phytoplankton, Cyclop-eeze,oyster eggs, and even finely chopped mysis.
Although relatively easy to maintain in an aquarium once acclimated, these corals may be a bit touchy at first. Careful acclimation to water conditions and lighting seem to be the critical steps to initial success with these corals. Light, in particular, is very critical. If these corals are rapidly exposed to very high light intensities, they may bleach out rapidly, with tissue detaching from the skeleton in the process.
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