Red Sea Whip (Leptogorgia virgulata)
Family: Gorgoniidae (Octocorals)
Habitat: Rock, sand, and silt bottoms of inshore coastal areas
Light: Medium Water Flow: Medium Space: 100+ gal.
Reef Safe: Yes Care Level: Difficult Temperament: Peaceful
Diet: Microplankton, micronutrients
Natural History: The Red Sea Whip is widely found in the warm regions of the Atlantic Ocean, on rock, sand, or silt bottoms. It is observed in tidal creeks and estuaries and in coastal rocky areas. This is one of the most common octocorals of the Atlantic. Amphipods, barnacles, and an oyster species are often attached to the arms of this coral. Whip-like specimens are generally found in areas of gentle water flow while fan-like individuals are found in areas with stronger tidal flow. This species secretes a substance (homarine) that inhibits the growth of diatoms.
Husbandry: The Red Sea Whip is difficult to maintain in captivity. Its polyps may retract when only a few have found found and it is easily overgrown by algae. It should be maintained in a dimly-lit aquarium or in a shaded part of a brightly-lit aquarium. Constant feedings may be required in a system with a high nutrient load and slightly lowered water temperature.
AKA: Red Sea Spray
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