seen? These hard corals with intricately patterned surfaces
are sometimes seen on our undisturbed Southern shores.
Features: These corals
have intricate patterns on their surfaces. Colonies may be boulder-shaped
(massive) or plate-like (laminar). The polyps are tiny and lack tentacles.
They rely on mucus
to gather suspended food particles from the water.
Leptoseris species (Leafy corals)
have colonies with delicate leafy shapes, some species form small
thin plates. Unlike the similar-looking Pavona species, Leptoseris
corals have polyps appearing on one side of the leaf-like structure
while Pavona corals have polyps on both sides. Veron suggests
the differences between Leptoseris and Pavona are somewhat
What do they eat? All members
of Family Agariciidae harbour microscopic, single-celled symbiotic
algae (zooxanthellae). The algae undergo photosynthesis to produce
food from sunlight. The food produced is shared with the host, which
in return provides the algae with shelter and minerals. It is believed
this additional source of nutrients from the zooxanthellae help hard
corals produce their hard skeletons and thus expand their size faster.
Status and threats: Some of our
Agaricid corals are listed as threatened on the IUCN
global listing. Like other creatures of the intertidal zone, they
are affected by human activities such as reclamation and pollution.
Trampling by careless visitors, and over-collection by hobbyists also
have an impact on local populations.
Terumbu Raya, Feb 09
Sisters Island, Jun 07
corals on Singapore shores
Agariciidae recorded for Singapore
Danwei Huang, Karenne P. P. Tun, L. M Chou and Peter A. Todd. 30 Dec
2009. An inventory of zooxanthellate sclerectinian corals in Singapore
including 33 new records **the species found on many shores in
in red are those listed as threatened
on the IUCN global list.
Gardineroseris planulata (Honeycomb corals)
(Castle coral) (Vulnerable)
Pachyseris speciosa** (Ringed
Pavona sp. (Lettuce corals)
with list of species recorded for Singapore
Genus Leptoseris (Leafy corals)
(select species from list) on Corals of the World online on the
Australian Institute of Marine Science website: Technical fact
Agariciidae (enter Agariciidae in search bar) on the IUCN
Red List of Threatened Species website: Technical fact sheet.
- Danwei Huang,
Karenne P. P. Tun, L. M Chou and Peter A. Todd. 30 Dec 2009. An
inventory of zooxanthellate sclerectinian corals in Singapore
including 33 new records (pdf). Raffles Bulletin of Zoology
Supplement No. 22: 69-80.
- Veron, Jen.
of the World
Australian Institute of Marine Science, Australia. 3 volumes.
- Chou, L.
M., 1998. A
Guide to the Coral Reef Life of Singapore. Singapore Science
Centre. 128 pages.
- Chou Loke
Meng. 1989. Hard corals of Singapore. Reef Ecology Study
Team, the National University of Singapore. A set of 4 posters.
Harry and Daniel Knop. 2005. Corals:
Indo-Pacific Field Guide
IKAN-Unterwasserachiv, Frankfurt. 305 pp.
Eric H. 2001. Aquarium
Corals: Selection, Husbandry and Natural History
T.F. H Publications. 464 pp
- Wee Y.C.
and Peter K. L. Ng. 1994. A First Look at Biodiversity in Singapore.
National Council on the Environment. 163pp.
- Ng, P. K.
L. & Y. C. Wee, 1994. The
Singapore Red Data Book: Threatened Plants and Animals of Singapore.
The Nature Society (Singapore), Singapore. 343 pp.