Mystery Coral Answer: Manilla Spy Montipora

17 Dec, 2021

It’s time to blow the cover on the duplicitous double-operative that featured as our latest mystery coral. This intricate and intensely-red coral SPS coral is known in the coral hobby and trade as the “Manilla Spy”, an up-and-coming cultivar of Montipora carinata.

CORAL readers will learn more about it and get an even wider appreciation for this coral in the forthcoming Reef Visions column for the January/February 2022 issue of CORAL Magazine, with images from both Amanda Meckley at ACI Aquaculture and a bonus image from Reef Builders’ Jake Adams!

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About the author

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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.


  1. December 18, 2021

    That my friends is a M.Hirsuta

  2. December 19, 2021

    I also think this is a beautiful Montipora hirsuta

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    December 29, 2021

    You’re both “right”, just out of date. Montipora hirsuta is not currently an accepted taxon. It is, however, a synonym of M. carinata. Details here –

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