Acanthastrea echinata, also known as Pineapple coral, Artichoke coral, Starry cup coral, or incorrectly as Favia, is a coral often used in aquariums. It is a wide-ranging coral, and can be found from the western Indian Ocean, throughout the Pacific Ocean, and eastward to the southeast Atlantic Ocean, and can inhabit any reef habitat to depths of 50 m. It may become threatened with the global decline of coral reefs.
A. echinata colonies are massive and cerioid, with laterally compressed corallites of uneven height. Walls are acute: septa are thick, with large teeth. Columellae are barely developed. Colonies have a thick fleshy mantle which is covered by fine papillae. The colonies are colourful: red, purple and green are the most common colours, with corallites and walls almost always of contrasting colours. A similar species is Micromussa amakusensis. Its habitat are shallow reef environments especially in subtropical localities.
A. echinata grows well in most reef aquariums. Keep under moderate light. This coral can survive without any direct feeding, but will thrive, and grow fast with target feeding of small meaty foods once a week. Place the coral in an area of moderate flow where currents will help supply trace elements. Do not keep with large angelfish, or butterfly fish.
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