831 species

Oculina varicosa

Lesueur, 1820


Gray, 1847

Characters: Colonies may be zooxanthellate or azooxanthellate depending on light availability. Azooxanthellate colonies form extensive banks while zooxanthellate colonies form clumps of tapered fused branches less than 0.5 metres across. Corallites are exsert, 2-3 millimetres diameter. Septa are in three cycles.

Colour: Tan, lavender, or dark brown.

Similar Species: Oculina diffusa, which has thinner, longer, more anastomosed branches. See also O. valenciennesi.

Habitat: Zooxanthellate colonies occur in protected environments as little as 5 metres deep.

Abundance: Rare.

Taxonomic References: Reed (1980); Veron (2000a);

Identification Guides: Humann (2002);

COTW History since Veron (2000a)
  • Family: All families are currently under review
  • Genus/species: No change