Devils's Hand (Lobophytum sp.)
Family: Alcyoniidae (Octocorals)
Habitat: reef flats and shallow water
Light: High Water Flow: Medium Space: 50+ gal.
Reef Safe: Yes Care Level: Easy Temperament: Aggressive
Diet: Zooxanthellae, microplankton, nutrient absorption
Natural History: Devil's Hand corals have many thick lobular projections and 'leathery skin'. They are often tan to brown with cream-colored polyps extending from their surface. They are common on reef flats and grow in shallow water, up to the intertidal zone. The Devil's Hand corals produce toxins that check the growth of nearby stony corals. Over 20 different terpenoids compounds have been identified from this genus.
Husbandry: Lobophytum can cause significant damage to other stony corals by producing toxins that clear corals nearby. They are hardy and easily adapt to different light and water flow systems. They can grow to large sizes and can be propogated by slicing and reattaching to new substrates. Colonies may reach over 1 meter in diameter.
AKA: Finger Leather Coral, Lobed Leather Coral, Devil's Hand Coral, Cabbage Leather Coral
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