Sinularia is typically found in various locations in the Indo-Pacific, although this coral is maricultured by ORA in the Marshall Islands. Instead of being collected from real reefs, this coral is either grown in aquariums or in a controlled area offshore, separate from real reefs. We’ll talk about the great benefits that come with these corals later.
This Yellow Polyp Sinularia displays fuzzy yellow polyps on a tan base with irregular “fingers” growth upward and outward. Depending on the lighting, the coral can display various shades of yellow or even green.
Sinularia and Leather corals in general are not difficult to care for. However, there are some basic conditions you should know about so that you can make your coral as happy and healthy as possible.
To start, let’s talk about lighting. Leather corals are generally not picky about lighting. Some Leather corals display better coloration under higher light, but it depends on the coral. A safe range to place this coral under is 50-150 micromoles of PAR. This range will allow the coral to display a vibrant yellow or green color without giving it too much light. You can place Leather corals in high light, but there is no benefit to this. Actually, too much light can cause the coral not to extend fully. If you are only able to place this coral in high light, make sure to at least acclimate it first. Start it in dim light and gradually move the coral into higher light every so often.
Sinularia prefer moderate to strong flow. Many Leather corals, including this one, shed a waxy layer about once a month or bimonthly. This is done to prevent algae growth on the coral and to keep it clean. The coral will retract during this process, but it will expand to a larger size after the process. Flow is important because it allows the coral to shed the layer properly. Flow also delivers needed nutrients to the coral.
Sinularia, and Leather corals in general, tend to handle higher nutrient levels than stony corals. This makes them great for beginners who have a difficult time keeping the nutrient levels low. However, you shouldn’t let the nitrates get over 20 ppm and the phosphates shouldn’t go over 0.1 ppm. If you have other corals, as most hobbyists do, you might want to keep your nutrient levels lower. A general guideline is to have nitrates around 1-5 ppm and phosphates as close to 0.01 ppm as possible but not 0. You can certainly have success outside this range, but it is a safe range to shoot for. For temperature, keep it between 72-78 degrees Fahrenheit and stable.
Because this coral contains zooxanthellae, it is considered photosynthetic and does not require feeding. If you want to feel this coral, it is best to dose your aquarium with live phytoplankton and amino acids.
One final thing to note about Leather corals is that some species release toxins in the water that slow the growth of stony corals. With Sinularia, this is less common, but it could still become an issue. You can combat this simply by giving plenty of space between stony corals and Leather corals, running carbon, and doing water changes.
Purchase Size: 1 – 2″
Placement: You can place this coral anywhere as long as its lighting and flow needs are met.
Flow: Moderate to strong.
Parameters: 72-78° F, pH 8.1-8.4, salinity 32-35 ppt
Maricultured corals such as this Yellow Polyp Sinularia from ORA are hardier and better able to handle the stress of shipping than corals collected from real reefs. The best part is that these corals are more sustainable and environmentally friendly!