Plesiastrea versipora Click to enlarge image
Stony coral, Plesiastrea versipora Image: MDC Seamarc Maldives
© CC BY SA

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    versipora
    Genus
    Plesiastrea
    Family
    Faviidae
    Order
    Scleractinia
    Subclass
    Hexacorallia
    Class
    Anthozoa
    Phylum
    Cnidaria
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    3 m

Introduction

Few stony corals grow around Sydney but of these, Plesiastrea versipora is most often noticed by divers.

Identification

This stony coral is usually a vivid green, or sometimes brown, colour with large circular pits in which the coral polyps live. The colouration is due to symbiotic algae, called zooxanthellae, living in the coral tissue. The algae photosynthesise, converting sunlight into energy that can be used by the coral.

Habitat

Stony corals live in coastal waters.

Distribution

Indo-Pacific region and southern parts of Australia.