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Featured Coral: Blastomussa

A long time hobby favorite is the Blastomussa coral. Blastomussa merleti and Blastomussa wellsi have successfully been kept in the home aquarium for many years now. Increasing popularity in recent years due to the color variations being collected and sent into the trade.
Blastomussa merleti
Blastomussa merleti, more commonly referred to as the Branching Blasto or Pineapple Coral. Each corallite grows and extends from a common dome shaped center. The polyps extend from each corallite giving the colony the ball shaped appearance you see here.

Australian Blastomussa merleti 
Polyp sizes for Blastomussa merleti are generally smaller compared to its cousin, the Blastomussa wellsi.
Blastomussa wellsi
Also very popular in the home aquarium is the Blastomussa Wellsi. This species grows very differently compared to the Blastomussa merleti. The growth pattern for Blastomussa wellsi is more of an encrusting type growth. Small corralites will form around existing corallites giving it the encrusting type look.
Indonesian Blastomussa wellsi
Both corals originate from the Indo-Pacific region. Given their bright colors and easy care, they've become a staple in the home aquarium. 
Care for Blastomussa is generally very easy. Low to medium lighting with medium flow will be ideal. Supplemental feeding of meaty foods or powder based foods can help encourage growth, but not a necessity.

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