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Large Polyp Stony Hard Corals (LPS) and Small Polyp Stony Hard Corals (SPS)

Acan Coral
Acropora
Brain Coral
Chalice Coral

Hard Corals consist of two types: SPS and LPS. SPS stands for Small Polyp Stonies and LPS stands for Large Polyp Stonies.

  • Small stony polyps are corals like acropora species.

  • Large Polyp Stonies are chalices, lobophyllia, trachaphyllia, etc. An amazing example of Large Polyp Stonies is the Acan Coral

I like to think of mouth size when thinking about this classification. SPS corals are filter feeders, using hair like fingers to catch small microscopic food sources such as phytoplankton &/or zooplankton.

LPS corals have much larger mouths and numerous visible sticky fingers which can catch and move food toward the oral cavity.

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