Identification and Evolution of Closed Brain Corals

Discussion in 'Large Polyp Stonies' started by clsanchez77, Nov 2, 2017.

  1. clsanchez77

    clsanchez77 Reefkeeping Extremist Global Moderator

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    R2R had a recent post linking this recent publication. Coral identification in this hobby has always been difficult as the hobbyists and trades just do not keep up with scientific literatures on the subject. It also does not help that we all don't have the ability to perform molecular level comparisons of our corals for proper identification :D.

    To my knowledge, no other subset of reef keeping has gone through the taxonomic transformations as the LPS "Brain Corals". No bias here, but these also happen to be my favorite corals as well.
    Below are the links to the 3 part report. The publication is hosted on

    Part 1:
    Includes Background, Overview and Favia & Dipsastraea (Formerly Pacific Favia) sps

    Part 2:
    Includes Favites, Goniastraea, Coelastraea, Platygyra, Leptoria, Oulophyllia, Paragoniastraea & Paramontastraea sps

    Part 3:
    Includes Astrea, Cyphastrea, Orbicella, Montastaea, Disploastraea, Plesiastrea, Solenastrea, Leptastrea, & Oulastrea sps.

    Disappointedly, the study did not get into "open brains" such as the calaustreas, lobophyllia, mussa, scolymias and other similar. While traditionally, theses were identified separately as Mussidae, this is no longer the case. In reading this, and in following the trends over the last couple of decades, it is very apparent that morphology is becoming less significant in the classification of corals.

    Here is the current brain coral "family tree"

    ...and no LARC post should go without eye candy :)
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2017
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  2. Humblefish

    Humblefish Dr. Fish Administrator LARC Supporter

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    Navarre, FL
    Excellent! Will add this to the scrolly section of our front page. :D
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  3. BluewaterLa

    BluewaterLa LARC Boil Master Administrator LARC Supporter

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    I do intend to look at all the links you provided as this is of high interest to me so thank you for sharing with us.
    Getting all technical on me now Chris ??.... -cheers2-

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