FCC Hairy Mushroom


Hairy Mushroom Coral
(Rhodactis indosinensis)
Placement: Middle to Bottom
Light: Moderate
Flow: Low to Moderate
Care Level:  Super Easy
Type: Soft Coral
Compatibility: Semi-Aggressive
Growth Rate: Moderate
Photosynthetic: Yes
Special Care: Super Easy

The Hairy Mushroom coral is a subspecies of the Rhodactis family. It is easily distinguishable by its relatively long, hair-like tentacles, hence its name. It is found in varying shades of green, purple and tan, with the most sought after specimens having purple flesh and green tentacles. It grows through lateral fission, with a single head pinching in the middle and dividing into two heads. This means that it has a fairly quick growth rate once established.

The Hairy Mushroom coral is found in the waters off Indonesia and Tonga. It is found at shallower depths than many other species of mushroom and so prefers moderate light levels, as opposed to the low light levels preferred by many other species of mushroom. In a home aquarium they are generally placed on the rockwork in the lower third of the tank.
The Hairy Mushroom coral prefers moderate levels of lighting so its placement will be determined by the depth of the tank. In a shallow tank they can be placed near the bottom, but in a deeper tank it might be a good idea to place them slightly higher so they receive enough light. Like most mushrooms, they prefer low to moderate levels of flow. The flow should be sufficient to keep detritus from settling on the coral but not so strong that the flesh of the coral is blown around or folded over on itself. Like all mushrooms available in the hobby, the Hairy Mushroom coral is photosynthetic and uses aquarium lighting to meet its energy needs. However, it does tend to grow faster if it is spot fed a soft coral specific food such as

Vitalis Soft Coral Food. However, its growth rate is already quite rapid so supplemental feeding is not generally required. Because the Hairy Mushroom coral reproduces through lateral fission (one head dividing into two) it is best to propagate the coral by simply removing a full head and placing it in a low flow area of the tank with a piece of rubble rock and waiting for it to attach naturally. The Hairy Mushroom Coral is a great choice for beginning and experienced aquarists and its fast growth rate means that it can be used to fill in areas of the tank quite quickly.

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