The Blue Devil's Finger Coral ,Lobophytum sp. is a very easy coral to care for and to propagate. The great variety of shapes that this Devils Finger leather coral will grow to offers an intriguing leather coral for both the beginner and the advanced aquarist. The fingers on the Devil's Finger Coral are fat, short and stubby, with compact "heads" or clusters at the top of the coral. These "heads" or clusters fold and create finger-like extensions or lobes on the Devils Finger Leather Coral. The common names for this beauty include Devil's Hand Coral, Devil's Finger Leather Coral, Finger Leather Coral, Lobed Leather Corals.
Aquacultered by cutting off fragments of the mother colonies. As they grow they change shape from first a round shaped mini leather that looks like a mushroom then as it grows it takes on a more thick finger appearance to the leather. The Blue Devils Finger Leathers thick, cushiony body makes it a much more substantial soft coral. The captive culturing of this soft coral has helped decrease the adjustment time to new systems making it more likely to open up and polyp quickly after shipping.
Lighting & Flow Requirements
The Blue Devils Finger Leather requires a moderate level of water flow and a low to moderate level of lighting. Lighting can be Power compacts, T5's, LED's or even Metal Halides. All lighting can grow Leather Corals as long as the proper level of light is provided. If a Par meter is available the appropriate lighting level is anywhere from a Par 100 all the way to a Par 250. Which is a wide range of acceptability. For lighting spectrum use between a 14-20K color spectrum for your bulbs for best coloration.
First allow two weeks time for the Blue Devils Finger Leather to adjust itself to its new reef aquarium. If desired you can mount your leather coral using a gel supper glue or a marine aquarium epoxy putty (which is the same as plumbers epoxy putty found in hardware stores). When deciding placement only consider a location providing moderate water current and low to moderate lighting level. Also be certain to leave enough room around your corals that they have room for growth without infringing on another corals growing room or lighting.
Diet and Feeding
Leather corals receive the majority of the nutritional requirements through the process of photosynthesis, which simply means their lighting creates symbiotic algae called zooxanthellae in the body of the leather coral which provides its nutrition. We do recommend providing supplemental food such as micro-plankton, baby brine shrimp, or foods designed for filter feeding invertebrates.
Most leather corals go through a natural process of cleansing, once in a while. Leather corals will shrink smaller and the outer skin will look strange as it sloth's itself off, shedding the top layer as it cleanses itself. Leathers may remain closed from just a few days to even a week or longer depending on the aquarium flow and other conditions, but they will reopen larger and even more beautiful than they were before.