Fun Elegance Corals Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
May 04, 2023 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Isobel Murphy
Fact-checked by Smriti Chaudhary
Australian Elegance corals facts talk about their long tentacles.
Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.2 Min

The Elegance coral (Catalaphyllia jardinei) is a beautiful polyp stony found throughout the world. These corals can choose to be free-living individual polyps, or they can choose to live in a colony. Corals that have fully matured will go on to build their colonies.

These corals need very specific requirements to be fulfilled to survive inside an aquarium and a moderate to high level of care is required to keep them alive and healthy. The water flow in the tank should be maintained at a moderate level, meaning it should not be too fast or too slow. Moderate lighting is also required as these corals don't relish direct exposure to intense light, but they also need some light to perform photosynthesis, which is why diffused moderate lighting is perfect. They also tend to emit a glow when placed under actinic lighting and this increases the glow of the markings on their oral disc. Owners should be careful not to put them in the direct way of metal halides as their polyps can get damaged.

Keep reading to learn more about Elegance corals, or check out our guide to brain coral and the horse conch for more.

Elegance Coral Interesting Facts

What type of animal is an Elegance coral?

The Elegance coral (Catalaphyllia jardinei) was first reported by William Saville-Kent in the year 1893 as the 'Pectinia jardinei'. It is a large polyp stony that descends from the stony coral genus, which comes from the family Euphyliidae and the order Scleractinia. It is also referred to as the ridge coral, wonder coral, or elegant coral.

What class of animal does an Elegance coral belong to?

The Elegance coral belongs to the invertebrate class, and more commonly, the Anthozoa class, which also includes sea fans, sea pens, and anemones.

How many Elegance corals are there in the world?

Although the IUCN red list has not listed the Elegance Coral in its directory, many organizations have done their research. In general, these corals are thought to be rare in most parts of the world and are extremely common in some concentrated areas. Due to overfishing and an increase in trade in recent times, there is a chance that the Elegance coral (Catalaphyllia jardinei) may be close to becoming endangered.

Where does an Elegance coral live?

One of the more common places that you can find these Elegance corals is in a reef environment that has a pretty turbid water flow. This species can be found in many places such as the Indian Ocean, the Indo-Western Pacific Ocean, the South China Sea, Australia, the Philippines, Japan, Mozambique, and even off the Australian coast.

What is an Elegance coral's habitat?

These specimens are mainly situated in the mid-water and shallower ends of the reef; however, they are sometimes also found on the deeper end. When it comes to their habitat in captivity, owners must make sure that the tank is equipped with all the right tools and measures to keep this species happy and healthy. Moderate lighting, water flow, and temperature should be kept in mind when building a tank for these LPS (large polyp stony) corals.

Who do elegance corals live with?

These corals can be found living freely by themselves as a lone poly or even as a part of a colony, where there are multiple LPS (large polyp stony) corals living together.

How long does an Elegance coral live?

The exact lifespan of an Elegance coral is not well known. However, if they are well taken care of in captivity, they can live for a long time.

How do they reproduce?

Elegance corals reproduce through two main methods: sexual and asexual methods. In the sexual method, they release their eggs and sperm into the water, which results in the formation of a planula larva. Through metamorphosis, the larva transforms into a polyp, which forms an exoskeleton through the expulsion of calcium carbonate. Soon enough, the polyp will turn into a coral.

Asexual reproduction is performed through the creation of buds that form along the margin of the skeleton, which are then released from the body of coral and develop into their daughter colonies.

What is their conservation status?

The IUCN red list has not enlisted the Elegance coral in its collection. Therefore, their current conservation status cannot be fully verified, but the coral trade has decreased their population.

Elegance Coral Fun Facts

What do Elegance corals look like?

These corals have polyps attached to their corallite skeleton, and each polyp has several long tendrils with an attached oral disc. You'll find them in colors such as pink, orange, red, cream, yellow, fluorescent green, lime green, blue, and purple. They need ample lighting to survive and be healthy. With the correct light, sometimes green corals in an aquarium look fluorescent green. It should be made sure that metal halides do not have direct contact with these corals.

Elegant corals need to be in moderate light.

How cute are they?

Although they can be aggressive at times to other species situated near them, they tend to be extremely beautiful. If you have this coral in your aquarium or you see one in the wild, you will realize that they're unique and extremely cute.

How do they communicate?

It is assumed that most corals use smells and chemical signals to communicate with each other. They are believed to have a biological sense of communication.

How big is an Elegance coral?

In terms of their height, they can grow up to 12 in (30 cm), while their width or diameter extends to 8 in (20 cm). Their tentacles can extend up to 4 in (10 cm). Compared to the species of staghorn coral, they are one-quarter the size.

How fast can an Elegance coral move?

They generally end up moving by inflating and puffing up and allowing the natural water current or water flow to move them. This species is not a fast-moving species and can only reach as far as its tentacles allow it to.

How much does an Elegance coral weigh?

The Catalaphyllia jardinei is thought to weigh around 0.085 lb (38.87g). It is not a very heavy specimen.

What are the male and female names of the species?

There aren't different categories or gender-specific terms that are used to differentiate between male Catalaphyllia jardinei and female Catalaphyllia jardinei.

What would you call a baby elegance coral?

Depending on the stage they're at, they could be termed planula larvae, plankters, or even tiny poly. They can also be referred to as a young elegant coral or a young Catalaphyllia jardinei.

What do they eat?

They must be only fed small portions of food in the tank since large pieces might be regurgitated later on. Elegance corals mainly feed on krills, shrimp, shellfish, and different categories of small fish. They should be fed a collection of their natural diet even if they're situated in an aquarium.

Are they poisonous?

The Catalaphyllia jardinei species is mainly known for being aggressive towards other marine and non-marine animals as well as other polyps. If these LPS corals get too close to other Catalaphyllia species, corals, or fish, they can sting them using their tentacles.

Would they make a good pet?

Well, the jury's still out on this debate. You can keep them in reef aquarium tanks but they are a lot of work!

Did you know...

Usually, when they reach the stage when they finally become mature, they can decide to stay with their colony or leave.

Are elegance corals aggressive?

These corals tend to have aggressive instincts, so there should be at least a distance of 6 in (15.24 cm) between them and any other LPS corals or aquatic pets.

Do elegance corals split?

The mouths of corals split as they grow because the mouth is at the center. They end up splitting when they produce new buds in the process of asexual reproduction. The process is called 'fragging'.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these fire coral facts and mushroom coral facts for kids.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable elegance coral coloring pages.

Elegance Corals Facts

What Did They Prey On?

Fish, krill, shellfish, and shrimp

What Type of Animal were they?


Average Litter Size?


How Much Did They Weigh?

0.085 lb (38.87 g)

What habitat Do they Live In?


Where Do They Live?

the indian ocean, indo-western pacific ocean, south china sea, australia, the philippines, southeast asia, japan, and mozambique

How Long Were They?

8 in (20 cm)

How Tall Were They?

12 in (30 cm)







Scientific Name

Catalaphyllia jardinei

What Do They Look Like?

Green, red, purple, yellow, orange, cream, and red

Skin Type


What Are Their Main Threats?

polyp stony coral, fish, snakes, seahorses, sea stars, and snails

What is their Conservation Status?

Not Listed
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Written by Moumita Dutta

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

Moumita Dutta picture

Moumita DuttaBachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.

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