The Devil's Finger Coral Lobophytum sp. is a very easy coral to care for and to propagate. They produce less mucous, and are more forgiving than other leather corals. The great variety of color and shape that this genus has can offer make it a desired coral for even the advanced aquarist. The stalks of the Devil's Finger Coral are fat and short, with compact "heads" or clusters at the top of the coral. These clusters are crowded together, tending to fold or create finger-like extensions or lobes. Thus the common names include Finger Leather Corals, Lobed Leather Coral, Thick Finger Coral, Devil's Hand Coral, and Cabbage Leather Coral.
Lighting & Flow Requirements
The Devil's Finger Coral Lobophytum sp. requires a moderate to high 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 14-10K color spectrum for your bulbs for best coral coloration.
First allow two weeks time for the The Devil's Finger Coral Lobophytum sp. to adjust itself to its new reef aquarium. If desired you can then 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.