When people talk about coral, SPS coral is often used. When I was first interested in corals, I didn’t know what SPS stood for. Nobody seemed to be able to explain it. This page is designed to give you a better understanding about SPS Corals.
SPS corals are a stony coral group that is distinguished by their small polyps. SPS stands to Small Polyp Stony and covers a large range of corals. Due to their strict care requirements, SPS corals can be the most difficult to care for in a reef tank.
In this post, I will explain more about SPS Corals. I’ll also be continuing to explain SPS corals, and how you can care for these living creatures in order to create a healthy reef tank. Continue reading the next section.
What are SPS Corals?
SPS corals are also known as Small Polyp Stony corals. They are a type hard coral. These corals, which are covered with small polyps and have an underlying stony skeletal structure that houses their polyps, are a type of hard coral.
Polyps look like living animals and are made up of many parts. They are essential for SPS corals to thrive in the harsh underwater environment. Although coral polyps can also be found on Large Polyp Steony (LPS), they are smaller than those on SPS Corals for Sale. This is what usually distinguishes LPS corals from SPS corals.
You can see every polyp in a piece SPS coral if you look closely.
Another great image shows the tiny polyps in a branch SPS coral.
These polyps play a crucial role in defining SPS corals. They also help to keep this type coral alive. The stony skeleton of corals is attached to polyps. They are able to access food, have tentacles that capture prey and stun them, and have roots and a stomach.
SPS corals have small polyps and also require special lighting, care, feeding, water parameters, and other requirements. This information will be covered in the next section of this article. This will allow you to fully understand SPS corals.
However, SPS Corals are generally more difficult to maintain than LPS corals and other coral types. SPS corals require excellent water quality and ideal water conditions to thrive.
How do you choose an SPS Coral?
Although all SPS corals have small polyps and a stony body, there are still many shapes and sizes to choose from. SPS corals may require more or less care.
Finding the right SPS coral can be difficult. When choosing your SPS coral, consider your budget, skill level, aesthetic preferences and financial resources.
As I said, SPS corals can be difficult to care for. Some SPS corals, however, are much easier to care than others. Do your research about the corals that you are considering buying. So you can plan for your SPS coral’s care and price.
Staghorn coral, AcroporaCervicornis
Acropora is the most sought-after SPS coral people would like to keep in their tanks. It has incredible branches and is a large part of natural reefs. These corals are quite difficult to grow, so Montipora is a good alternative.
Montipora is a montipora that grows on plates/plateaus. It also has loads of small polyps.
What kind of tank should SPS Coral have?
Your SPS coral will determine the type of tank that you need. You will still need to ensure that your aquarium has enough space for your corals to grow. This applies regardless of what SPS coral species you choose.
A larger tank makes it easier to manage water quality and parameters. You can have very small SPS corals within a twenty-gallon tank. If you intend to grow many SPS corals, I recommend a larger tank.
Water Parameters for SPS Coral
When setting up your reef tank, there are many factors to consider. This is especially important when creating the ideal environment for your SPS coral. Temperature is important because SPS corals can only live in warmer water.
Your temperature should not fluctuate but be constant. Calcium, magnesium, and acidity must all be optimized. SPS coral needs a lot of calcium, magnesium and other nutrients to sustain their skeletal system.
This skeletal system is also protected from collapse by alkalinity. The calcium level should be between 300-440 ppm and magnesium around 1300-1400. The alkalinity should remain at 9-10. To keep your water levels under control, I recommend testing it regularly.
Make sure your tank water is always in good condition. This is particularly important for SPS corals. It is important that the water quality does not drop. Your coral may die if it does.
SPS corals are sensitive to high levels of ammonia or nitrate. Make sure you have a good filtering system and that your tank water is changed often!
Lighting Conditions for SPS Corals
For any coral species, lighting is vital. Photosynthesis is the way corals obtain most of their nutrients. SPS corals also require trace elements such as calcium and magnesium. However, the sunlight directed at them is an important part of their diet.
You want the tank to be lit properly! Every SPS coral has a different lighting requirement. SPS corals prefer moderate to high light levels. To get the best results, do some research about your SPS coral breed. Corals For Sale – LPS, SPS, Softy, Zoanthids& more – clickcorals
For coral reefs, LED lights can be a great option. Make sure to choose the right lighting system for corals. Corals prefer lighting that is more blue.
SPS Coral Food Preparation
It might be necessary to feed your SPS coral. Coral also absorbs calcium and magnesium from water, as you know. Coral also consume bacteria, zooplankton and other algae found in the water.
SPS corals require a lot nutrients to maintain their skeletons and attached polyps. SPS corals can be fed any type of food. You can add zooplankton, brine shrimps and other prepared food to the water.
A liquid nutritional supplement is recommended for SPS corals. Just add a small amount of the liquid to your tank, and your SPS coral will receive all its nutritional needs.
Reef Energy Plus and liquid Zooplankton are great products to keep your SPS happy and healthy!
Water Flow for SPS Corals
You should also ensure proper water flow to your SPS tank. Water flow is essential to keep your tank clean and free from major waste accumulation. Water flow also helps to get nutrients moving throughout your tank and to the coral. This will allow oxygen to penetrate your reef tank more quickly.
For SPS corals, you’ll need to have high water flows. Good circulation will keep your corals healthy. This prevents algae growth from occurring as easily on corals and in the water. This is a critical part of tank maintenance for the health of SPS corals. For better water flow, ensure you have a pump system in your aquarium.
SPS Corals: Final Care Tips
SPS corals are special, with unique attributes and care requirements. Follow the tips I gave you. Particularly when it comes to lighting and water conditions. These are two crucial factors for the health of your SPS coral!
Be careful when you place other corals with your SPS coral. You should keep your SPS coral clear of LPS corals. LPS corals can be quite aggressive. They have tentacles and stingers, similar to SPS corals. These could cause damage to your coral by using them. They will also lash out if they see your coral nearby!
SPS corals do not usually become aggressive. However, they should be allowed to roam freely if they are near other corals. If you have multiple colonies, it is best to put your SPS corals with your other SPS corals.
SPS corals should be handled with care. Place your coral gently in the water. You should always wear gloves. This is to protect your coral from contamination.
Corals may be dangerous or try to bite you with their tentacles in rare cases. SPS corals, and corals generally, are not susceptible to this. It is not a bad idea to be cautious when handling corals of any kind.
Make sure your coral is in a good location. These corals thrive in higher light levels, as I have already mentioned. Your coral should be located under your light system so they get all the light and water flow that they require. You should plan ahead where your SPS coral will be placed.