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Montipora setosa is a species of small polyp stony coral (SPS coral) that belongs to the family Acroporidae. It is commonly found in the Indo-Pacific region, particularly in the reefs of the Red Sea, Indian Ocean, and the western Pacific Ocean. Here's a description and care guide for Montipora setosa:


  1. Appearance: Montipora setosa typically forms encrusting or plate-like colonies, with small polyps covering its surface.
  2. Color: The coloration of Montipora setosa can vary widely, including shades of green, purple, blue, pink, and brown, often with fluorescent highlights.
  3. Polyps: The polyps are small and extend from tiny cups on the coral's surface. They usually extend during the night to feed but can remain partially extended during the day.
  4. Growth Pattern: It grows relatively fast compared to other SPS corals, and under favorable conditions, it can form extensive colonies.

Care Guide:

  1. Water Parameters:

    • Temperature: 74-82°F (23-28°C)
    • Salinity: 1.024-1.026 specific gravity
    • pH: 8.1-8.4
    • Alkalinity: 8-12 dKH
    • Calcium: 400-450 ppm
    • Magnesium: 1250-1350 ppm
    • Phosphate and Nitrate: Low levels, as SPS corals are sensitive to high nutrient levels.
  2. Lighting:

    • Montipora setosa requires strong lighting, preferably provided by LED fixtures specifically designed for reef aquariums.
    • Place them in the upper to middle parts of the tank where they can receive moderate to high light intensity.
  3. Water Flow:

    • Provide moderate to high water flow to simulate natural reef conditions and prevent detritus buildup on the coral's surface.
    • Use powerheads or wavemakers to create turbulent flow patterns within the tank.
  4. Feeding:

    • Montipora setosa primarily obtains nutrients through photosynthesis, but it can also capture planktonic organisms and organic matter from the water.
    • While not necessary, occasional target feeding with planktonic foods like phytoplankton or zooplankton can benefit its growth.
  5. Placement:

    • Place Montipora setosa in an area with sufficient space for growth, away from aggressive corals that may sting or shade it.
    • Ensure there is enough space around the coral to prevent it from encroaching on neighboring corals.
  6. Water Quality:

    • Maintain stable water parameters by regularly testing and adjusting as necessary.
    • Perform routine water changes to replenish trace elements and remove accumulated waste.
  7. Acclimation:

    • When introducing Montipora setosa to a new aquarium, acclimate it gradually to prevent stress and ensure a smooth transition.
  8. Pests and Predators:

    • Keep an eye out for common coral pests such as flatworms, nudibranchs, and coral-eating snails. Quarantine new corals before adding them to the main tank to prevent introducing pests.

By providing optimal conditions and regular care, Montipora setosa can thrive and add beauty to a reef aquarium. However, it's essential to monitor its health regularly and intervene promptly if any issues arise.

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