The Yellow Toadstool Mushroom Leather Coral
is also referred to as Sarcophyton Coral, a Toadstool Leather, a Leather coral, or a Trough coral. Smaller Yellow Toadstool Leather Corals are shaped like a mushroom, however as they grow larger they will take on an interesting folded appearance. When fully open, the tops of these toadstool leather corals are covered with numerous polyps about 1 cm in length. It is difficult to identify many species because they all have the similar appearance of a mushroom or toadstool, each with a distinct stalk and capitulum (cap). As they grow older, they develop a folded appearance. The Yellow Toadstool Mushroom Leather Coral is relatively peaceful, but adequate space should be provided between them and other corals in the reef aquarium. Sarcophyton Leather Corals are easy to maintain in the reef aquarium and make an excellent coral for the beginning through expert reef aquarist. Yellow Toadstool Leather Corals require medium to high lighting combined with medium to strong water movement. For continued good health, they will also require the addition of iodine, strontium, and other trace elements to the water.
Lighting & Flow Requirements
The Toadstool Mushroom Leather Coral 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 Toadstool Leather Coral 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.