Bubble Coral

From Microcosm Aquarium Explorer

Jump to: navigation , search
Plerogyra sinuosa - (Dana, 1846)
Bubble Coral

Plerogyra sinuosa.jpg

Their bubbles inflate during the day and deflate at night during tentacle extension. Janine Cairns-Michael


Related to the small bubble coral Physogyra. Colors range from white to green, blue, or tan. Characterized by the presence of large (up to 0.75 in. [2 cm] in diameter) vesicles or bubbles that arise from the polyps. Bubbles are zooxanthellae “accommodators” that, by inflation, expose their internal zooxanthellae to much more light.

Sexy Shrimp, Thor amboinensis, may adopt a Bubble Coral colony as its commensal host.

Family: Caryophylliidae

Other common name(s):

  • Grape Coral
  • Octobubble Coral

Native range:

Maximum length: 30 cm (12 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 190 L (50 gal)

Lighting: Prefers low light intensity; avoid areas of strong illumination.

Water: Marine 24 °C (75 °F) - 28 °C (82 °F)


Zooxanthellate, but must be fed; will eat lots of food if it is offered.

Aquarium Compatibility

Good reef aquarium animal, but aggressive and will form sweeper tentacles. Somewhat fragile and prone to disease and damage. Does not tolerate disturbance by hermit crabs.

Special Care

Bubble Coral prefers weak currents. Avoid areas of strong illumination.


Once established, it tends to be relatively hardy if not disturbed.

Reference: A PocketExpert Guide to Marine Invertebrates
Image credit: JCM
Text credit: RLS