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Cladiella sp.

Cladiella sp.

Trunk : Cnidarians (Cnidaria)
Class : Flower animals (anthozoa)
Subclass : Octocorallia
Order : Soft corals (Alcyonacea)
Family : Leather corals (Alcyoniidae)
Genre : Cladiella
Scientific name
Gray , 1869

Cladiella is a genus of leather corals (Alcyoniidae) from the coral reefs of the Indo-Pacific .


Like all corals, they are animal colonies made up of many individual polyps . They grow branched, lobed or finger-shaped. Like all animals from the Octocorallia subclass, the single polyp has eight feathered tentacles, and the gastric space is divided into eight chambers by eight longitudinal walls (mesenteries). The polyps are brown in color and can be completely withdrawn into the whitish trunk (coenenchyma). The entire colony changes its color from brown to white. This applies to the genus as a distinguishing feature. Like all leather corals, Cladiella does not have a solid calcareous skeleton, but rather has small (less than 0.2 mm), dumbbell-shaped calcareous needles ( sclerite ) in the body as strengthening elements . The surface of the colony is extremely slimy. It lives in an endosymbiosis with unicellular, symbiotic algae ( zooxanthellae ), which supply the corals with nutrients.

Cladiella can be kept in saltwater aquariums and is easier to keep for beginners than hard corals . Here, too, they often reach enormous sizes.


  • K. Fabricius & P. ​​Alderslade: Soft Corals and Sea Fans. 2001, Australian Institute of Marine Science. ISBN 0-642-32210-4

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