Heliofungia actiniformis

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Long Tentacle Mushroom Coral

The Long Tentacled Mushroom or “Helio” as it is often nicknamed is a distinctive species that can be confused with few other corals. Its long, flowing tentacles so closely resemble that of an anemone species that many aquarists could be forgiven for confusing it as a sand-based clownfish host.

Helio’s are single, solitary living substrate corals and are well known as one of the biggest single polyped corals in the ocean with their calcareous skeletons often reaching up to 30cm (12”) in diameter. Once fully inflated, however, they can be much larger than this.

Colour is variable with base colours mostly green, brown or grey with tentacles either the same colour as the base or of a contrasting colour. Tentacles tips are usually white but can also be yellow, pink or purple/blue. On top of this, the surface can also be striped with white radiating out from the single, central mouth

Natural Range

Great Barrier Reef and Northern Australia

Lighting

Low accepted, moderate preferred

Water Movement

Moderate to High

Growth Form

From Colony Forming, Branching to Plate forming, Encrusting to solitary

Recommended Tank Position

All – Low Ground cover/Substrate to High in the water column, sufficient space provided adjacent to ensure protection from neighbouring pieces

Growth Speed

Slow to Moderate

Ease of Keeping

2-5

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