December 2010 COTM- Valida

Discussion in 'Coral of the Month' started by Dingo, Dec 3, 2010.

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  1. Dingo

    Dingo Giant Squid

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    Acropora valida
    [​IMG]

    Domain: Eukaryota
    Kingdom: Animalia
    Subkingdom: Radiata
    Infrakingdom: Coelenterata
    Phylum: Cnidaria
    Subphylum: Anthozoa
    Class: Anthozoa
    Subclass: Zoantharia
    Order: Scleractinia
    Suborder: Astrocoeniina
    Family: Acroporidae
    Genus: Acropora
    Species name: valida
    Scientific name: Acropora valida


    Origin: This coral originates from all around the Pacific. Most common occurrences are on the Great Barrier Reef near Australia, Hawaii, Phillipines, throughout the Indian Ocean, and Madigascar.

    Common Name: Valida, Tricolor acro, Larry Johnson acropora, Purple Tip acro.

    Temperament: Acropora valida is a very nice acro to keep. It is not invasive and will not overtake other SPS. It will be hurt by LPS sweeper tentacles so make sure to keep a distance between the two.

    Reef parameters and recommended/desired levels.
    Salinity/specific gravity-1.025ppm or 35ppt
    Temp.-78-82
    PH-8.1-8.3
    Ammonia/NH3-0
    Nitrite/NO2-0
    Nitrate/NO3-0
    Phosphate/PO4-0

    Hardiness: I would rate this acro as moderate. Given that you have all of your parameters stable and are able to care for acropora, this one proves to be very hardy. I have even seen valida live during a partial tank crash where a lot of other SPS died.

    Flow: Valida is a very flexible coral and can adapt to any type of flow you throw at it. In high flow situations this coral will take the shape of a pyramid as a colony and grow upwards and outwards with close branches. Under less flow, the branches will spread out a little and it may even grow into a tabling formation with the longest branches facing directly vertical.

    Feeding: Feeding is similar to most other SPS corals. The small polyps will only be able to consume very small organisms such as: small copepods, bacteria, zooxanthellae, and phytoplankton. In our reef tanks, a majority of the energy this coral requires is supplied by intense lighting.

    Lighting: This acro is very adaptable to many types of lighting. It can be kept under t5, MH, LED, and quite possibly even strong CF lights. The color of this coral will vary quite noticably based on both the intensity and type of lighting it is under.

    Frag difficulty: Fragging is very simple with valida. Given its very fast growth and its long thinner branches, it is one of the easiest corals to frag. Some aquarists will frag very large pieces with multiple branches because this coral grows so fast.

    Personal Observations: Acropora valida is a fun and peaceful acro to keep. In the wild it often grows closely to A. tenius, Galaxia, and Porites. Valida has many color variants so different variations of the same species can be kept in the same aquarium or even together as a multicolored colony. The two most common variations of valida are purple tissue with green polyps or tan tissue with purple growth tips. One interesting observation I have noticed between types of lighting with the tan tissue and purple tips version is that under higher intensity lighting the tan tissue will actually house some quite beautiful zooxanthellae. Under intense white halide lighting the tan tissue takes on a metallic blue color. Under intense blue LED lighting the whole entire coral takes on a metallic green coloration (minus the purple growth tips) and the corallites become lime green. My experiences with Acropora valida have been exceptionally great because it is very hardy and it grows quite fast into a gorgeous colony.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 3, 2010
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  3. steve wright

    steve wright Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Dingo

    excellent write up
    more pictures of this fine looking coral please


    Steve
     
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  4. Matt Rogers

    Matt Rogers Kingfish Staff Member

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    Another great writeup Trent! 8)

    I have a Valida in my tank. I do enjoy it a lot.

    Some observations I've noticed - when I epoxy'd mine to a rock I did it further down then I had with other corals from the surface. I began to realize this was a bit of a mistake. I did not see the growth from it that I was seeing from others. Then I lowered my halide closer to the surface (now around 12") from up high where it was during the early algae phase of the tank. It responded very well to this with new purple shoots.

    Then I started to target feed it with some Coral Frenzy I am testing out. It has responded well to this as well with more growth and polyp extension. I have some cyclopeeze that I bet it would like as well. I noticed that the base has covered the epoxy now and is moving onto the rock.

    Another great acro in my book. And Trent's! :) Thanks again...

    matt
     
  5. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Great write up Trent
     
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  6. Corailline

    Corailline Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Excellent write up Dingo. I really like knowing the geographical orgin of corals.

    I got a mystery frag about three months ago. After watching it acclimate and grow I have concluded it is a tricolor. I like the thin branch appearence and the purple tips give it nice contrast.

    K+ to you for doing the work.
     
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  7. Dingo

    Dingo Giant Squid

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    here is another picture... notice the blue sheen that it takes on in the tissue under very high lighting. I have also seen this sheen in a green variation on certain specimens!

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. aquariaman

    aquariaman Pajama Cardinal

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    WOW! you know a lot!!!
     
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  10. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Great shot, cool to know
     
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  11. kcbrad

    kcbrad Giant Squid

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    Great write up Trent! Gorgeous coral.
     
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  12. Pickupman66

    Pickupman66 Tassled File Fish

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    Nice Dingo. that second photo you posted looks like what I would call a bali tricolor. guess it is a type of Valida as well. I had one of those and one of the pink/purple ones. mine was hot pink with purple polyps and the blue tips like the top photo. it did alot of rock encrusting in my tank before it shot off and grew like mad.