Dipsastraea corals, also known as Moon corals or Brain corals, are captivating additions to reef aquariums, admired for their unique appearance and relative ease of care. These stony corals are widely distributed in the tropical waters of the Indo-Pacific region. Dipsastraea corals are characterized by their distinct round or dome-shaped colonies with pronounced ridges and valleys, resembling the folds of a brain or the surface of the moon, hence their common names.
They exhibit a robust and solid skeletal structure with large polyp formations. Their polyps possess a distinctive circular arrangement, creating a striking appearance reminiscent of flower petals. The coloration of these corals varies widely, ranging from vibrant shades of green, blue, red, pink, purple and orange.
Dipsastraea corals are known for their hardiness and adaptability, making them suitable for various tank environments. With the right care and conditions, they can grow and flourish, becoming a centrepiece in a well-maintained reef aquarium.
Isn't this a Favia?
The name change from "Favia" to "Dipsastraea" is a result of taxonomic revisions and advancements in our understanding of coral taxonomy. The classification and naming of organisms, including corals, are subject to updates and changes as scientists gather more information and study their evolutionary relationships.
In the past, the genus "Favia" was used to encompass a group of stony corals with similar characteristics and appearance. However, as genetic analysis and morphological studies advanced, it became evident that some of the corals initially classified as "Favia" were actually more closely related to the genus "Symphyllia" and "Lobophyllia" than to the true "Favia" corals.
To resolve this issue and ensure accurate taxonomy, taxonomists reevaluated the relationships between these corals using DNA analysis and other data. As a result, they concluded that some of the corals previously classified under "Favia" should be reclassified into separate genera. Thus, the genus "Dipsastraea" was established to accommodate these corals, and the name "Favia" was reserved for a more specific group of corals which we do not encounter in the reef aquarium hobby.