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Nicholas

Nephthea vs. Colt Coral

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Nicholas

How do you tell the difference between a Nephthea and a Colt Coral?

 

I really can't see many differences between the two pictures shown in the Coral Info Database on this website other than coloration.

 

I've got a small frag of what was possibly called a Kenya Tree although I'm not entirely sure. It was a hitchhiker to a Toadstool Leather that I had gotten.

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yardboy

Far as I know a Nepthea is typically green (the ones normally available) while a colt is typically brownish/whitish.

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Nicholas

This answer is implying that the difference in color is determining the difference in scientific classification. If it's green it's Nephthea sp. and if it's white it's Cladiella sp.

 

This can't be correct.

 

Additionally, the Coral Info Database states the following:

 

Nephthea - The most common colors seen are brown, yellow, whitish, and occasionally green.

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yardboy

You asked about Colt coral, not Cladiella. Colt is a common name applied to quite a few corals, unfortunately. For Cladiella, as per Borneman, "Aquarium Corals" - "Although color is a poor indicator of coral identity, almost all of the Cladiella species are a cream to gray-white color."

 

For Nepthea, in the wild there are blander colors, but the most common color I've seen in the aquarium trade is green. Google Nepthea and see how many times green is mentioned. Again as per Borneman, "One of the most common Nepthea in the trade is called the "neon gree tree"."

If you were looking for scientific classification, you are welcome to look up sclerite patterns, the only real way to determine the different genuses.

Maybe more toward what you are looking for might be found in another of their common names, Cladiella is often called "finger leather", while Nephthea is usually referred to as "tree coral".

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aquaman7

It would take a while to describe the differences in these corals by typing it all down. So, as they say, a picture paints a thousand words... I hope you can visually see the differences in these photographs of typical species for the genera Cladellia, Nephthea, Sinularia, and Capnella. I've also included the common names that they are usually referred to as.

 

Cladiella sp. (commonly referred to as "colt coral")

Cladiella%20spp.%20(Fingerlederkoralle).jpg

 

Nephthea sp. (commonly referred to as "tree coral")

nephthea1.jpg

 

Sinularia sp. (commonly referred to as "finger leather coral")

sinularia.jpg

 

Capnella sp. (commonly referred to as "kenya tree coral")

Capnella%20imbricata%20-%20Baeumchenweichkoralle.jpg

 

I hope that helps.

Edited by aquaman7

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Nicholas

I didn't realize there was another response to this question until now. I just felt bad about switching from the common term of Colt Coral to the scientific term of Cladellia on Yardboy. I knew better than to do that because I'm amazed at how many different corals have the same common name as I pour over various websites.

 

I assumed I was being explicit by referencing the Coral Info Database (http://www.nano-reef.com/corals/) on this site but I don't think that came through very well.

 

Aquaman7, my problem is that I look at those pictures and I mainly see stalk and branches that look alike. I can see me now in the future. "Why are my Acans doing so poorly?" "Dude, those are Zoanthids." :)

 

I was never given a name for what I have because it was a hitchhiker to a frag of Sarcophyton that I bought from a local. It started out about half the size of a pinhead and now 4 months later it's about 1.5 to 2 inches tall.

 

I wanted to learn how to tell these similar corals apart by features on my own but now I'll just post a picture and see what you guys think it is:

 

post-49022-1262414956_thumb.jpg

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aquaman7

My instinctive answer would be Kenya Tree. However, the the polyps seem more "open" and pink than a typical Kenya Tree (Capnella imbricata), they look like that of a small Colt Coral (Cladiella sp.). It's hard for me to say for sure as it looks to be a small, 'immature' specimen. My best evaluation would be it is a small Cladiella sp.

 

 

If you want a more positive ID, my advice would be to consult with someone on Wet Web Media... http://www.wetwebmedia.com. They are excellent at ID's there. (Although I'm still waiting to hear back about the proper taxonomy of a blenny I had obtained. :lol:)

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