One-of-a-Kind Gem: Fused Platygyra from Australia

13 Nov, 2020

An amazing colony of fused Australian Tricolor Brain Coral, Platygyra sp., was recently received by Carolina Aquatics. Download a version of this image as a desktop/wallpaper
An amazing colony of fused Australian Tricolor Brain Coral, Platygyra sp., was recently received by Carolina Aquatics. Download a version of this image as a desktop/wallpaper here: (horizontal at 1900 X 1200, or vertical at 1200 X 1900).

FUSED TRICOLOR BRAIN CORAL
Platygyra sp.
Carolina Aquatics
Kernersville, North Carolina
carolinaaquatics.com
Geographic Origin: Australia
Light Level: Moderate
Flow Level: Moderate
Care Level: Easy

Arriving in early October 2020, this unique Australian Brain Coral has been turning the heads of everyone who sees it. “It’s corals like this that remind me why I don’t have a tank at home…it would be coming home with me,” says Kris Cline, owner of wholesale aquarium trade distributor Carolina Aquatics, based in Kernersville, NC.

A closer look at the smaller coral in this "fused" colony; blue base, green ridges culminating in purple crests.
A closer look at the smaller coral in this “fused” colony; blue base, green ridges culminating in purple crests. Download a version of this image as a desktop/wallpaper here: (horizontal or vertical).

“The coral took up almost an entire box,” according to Kline. This specimen is approximately 11 inches across and 6-7 inches wide, with an elevation change of about 3 inches; the coral has a “mountain range” of sorts rising into a mound, which is on the right-hand side of the coral as shown in the opening photo.

In addition to the fused region of this colony, the larger coral also exhibits areas where the ridges have thickened, resulting in larger bright green highlights.
In addition to the fused region of this colony, the larger coral also exhibits areas where the ridges have thickened, resulting in larger bright green highlights.

The individual coral that is purple with green ridges dominates the colony, while a different specimen, green ridged but with a blue base, slashes through the larger coral, like striking a vein of gold in a rock formation. Kline noted that “They’re not chemically fighting, but they’re not merging.”

The two corals have managed to form some sort of truce, although Cline believes that the larger individual has been slowly growing over the smaller one for many years. Download a version of this image as a desktop/wallpaper here:
The two corals have managed to form some sort of truce, although Cline believes that the larger individual has been slowly growing over the smaller one for many years. Download a version of this image as a desktop/wallpaper here: (horizontal or vertical).

At the time of reporting, this coral is available through the wholesale aquarium trade to customers of Carolina Aquatics, which declined to speculate on a retail price for the colony.

See this, and many more jaw-dropping corals, in the Reef Visions column of the January/February 2021 edition of CORAL Magazine. Don’t miss it, subscribe or renew today.

Image credits: Jeremy Shenk/Carolina Aquatics

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About the author

Matt Pedersen

Matt Pedersen is a Sr. Editor and Associate Publisher with Reef To Rainforest Media, LLC & CORAL Magazines, and is a Sr. Editor and Publishing Partner with Aquatic Media Press, LLC & AMAZONAS Magazine. Matt has kept aquariums for 38 years, has worked in most facets of the aquarium trade, is an active aquarist and fish breeder (both marine and freshwater), and was recognized with the 2009 MASNA Award as the MASNA Aquarist of the Year.

2 Comments

  1. November 13, 2020

    Does anyone else think this coral is just missing ‘Florida’?

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