The Green Hard Finger Leather Coral (Sinularia sp.) are another very hardy coral making them a very good choice for people that are new to the hobby. Not only is the Hard Finger Leather an easy and durable leather coral but it is also visually stunning as well. While their polyps are retracted they appear smooth, but when they are distended, they often appear nearly fuzzy. It really is neat to see them all smooth when the lights come on in the morning, and watch as they extend their polyps for a day of feeding. They often react quite quickly and extend polyps and maximize size when I feed them my "free invert food." (See our articles.)
Lighting & Flow Requirements
The Green Hard Finger Leather Coral requires a moderate to strong water flow and tends to do very well under various types of reef tank lighting. Lighting can be Power compacts, T5's, LED's or even Metal Halides. All lighting can grow the Green Hard Finger Leather Coral 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 coral coloration.
Diet and Feeding
Although the Green Hard Finger Leather Coral receives a portion of its 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, the Green Hard Finger Leather Coral relies less on the process of photosynthesis, and depends more on obtaining outside food. Microplankton, marine snow, and dissolved materials should make up the bulk of its diet. 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.