Aussie Gold Torch Care – How To Increase The Survival Rate Of This Euphyllia

Aussie Gold Torch (Euphyllia glabrescens) corals are one of the most stunning torches on the market. They have unique color morphs that have yellow, gold, or orange with purple tips, which is why they are a favorite among many aquarium hobbyists. Now, you may already be aware of Euphyllia corals, as the genus also includes Hammer and Frogspawn corals, however, their appearance is different from Aussie Gold Torches. Hammer corals have “T-shape” or “hammer-like” tentacles, and Frogspawns have multi-branching tentacles.  

Aussie Gold Torches claim their name from their “torch-like” sweeper tentacles that extend up to 4 inches long, these LPS (large polyp stony) corals have become a “must-have” for reefers making them a popular addition to any saltwater aquarium. 

Like many other marine animals, Aussie Gold Torch Euphyllia has specific requirements for optimal growth and survival, which is why in this article you’re going to learn everything you need to know when it comes to caring for your torch coral

Summary

  • Common Name: Aussie Gold Torch
  • Scientific Name: Euphyllia glabrescens
  • Origin: Indo-Pacific
  • Care Level: Medium
  • Temperament: Aggressive
  • Lighting: Moderate (PAR 150-250)
  • Water Flow: Moderate
  • Placement: Middle to bottom, on rock work or rubble

Aussie Gold Torch Care

Aussie Gold Torch Euphyllia corals require a perfect and mineral-rich water environment for them to survive, grow, and thrive in your aquarium. Hence, it is advised you get some experience keeping corals before you take the plunge keeping a more challenging coral, like Aussie Gold Torches. 

They are considered difficult to care for because of where they are collected in the wild. As Aussie Gold Torches are usually harvested from river mouths, the water conditions are more turbulent often creating brackish conditions, and exposing the Aussie Gold Torch to different sediments and organisms. Because of this, it is difficult to replicate these conditions in a saltwater reef tank at home, contributing to the difficulty of keeping this particular coral. 

When propagating your Aussie Gold Torch Euphyllia, it is also recommended to  place them in a mature tank. This allows your water parameters to settle and creates a stable and healthy environment for them to live in. 

It is also incredibly important to regularly test your water parameters, especially for less forgiving LPS corals like Aussie Gold Torches. We recommend using API and RedSea test kits, to test the following parameters are within range:

  • Temperature: 75 ° – 80 °F
  • pH: 8.1 – 8.4
  • Salinity: 1.024 – 1.026
  • Alkalinity: 8 – 11 dKH
  • Nitrates: <10 ppm
  • Phosphates: <0.10 ppm
  • Calcium: 420 – 440 ppm
  • Magnesium: 1260 – 1350
  • Strontium: 8 – 10

Aussie Gold Torch Water Flow Requirements

Good water flow is one of the most important factors when it comes to keeping corals. Like most LPS corals, Aussie Gold Torches benefit from a moderate water flow with no sudden changes, however, they tend to do better with a little more powerful water flow than other Euphyllia species.

A moderate flow will ensure they get enough nutrients from the water and allow gentle movement of their sweeper tentacles. If the water flow is too fast, they will retract their polyps as they are prone to tearing, and if the water flow is too slow, they are more likely to become infected by bubble algae.

Aussie Gold Torch Growth Rate

The most common question when keeping corals is how fast you can expect your coral to grow. Despite Aussie Gold Torch corals’ slow growth rate, over the years they can get very large, with some reaching up to eight inches in circumference in captivity, and three feet in the wild.

You are probably thinking about how you can maximize their growth. The answer is fairly simple, however, it will require regular checks on your aquarium and a ton of patience. You will need to maintain proper levels of light, food, water flow, nutrients, and supplements consistently to optimize their growth potential. 

Aussie Gold Torch Lighting & PAR Requirements

Like most LPS corals, Aussie Gold Torches are big fans of rich blue LED lighting. Under the right LED lighting, Aussie Gold Torches love emphasizing their bright colors but give them too much, you can damage their precious tissues and it can stunt their growth; this is why alternatives like metal halide lighting is not recommended. 

Now, the term “PAR” is one you have probably heard of if you are an experienced aquarium hobbyist. But if you are just getting started, PAR stands for Photosynthetically Active Radiation and is the amount of light that penetrates the aquarium water, which is important for photosynthetic corals, like Aussie Gold Torches. These corals do best in moderate lighting, with a PAR range between 150 and 250 as they are naturally found in deeper waters.

Aussie Gold Torch Placement

How important was it for you to find the perfect house location, or even the best placement for your bed? Corals feel the same! The only difference is, when they are placed inside the aquarium, the torch coral attach to a substrate such as a rock, which can make it difficult to move them around. Therefore, finding the perfect placement the first time will make it easier for you and will reduce stress for your coral. 

Due to their water flow and lighting needs, these corals do best in the middle of the aquarium between the bottom and middle regions. 

Aussie Gold Torches are known to be aggressive, attacking any neighboring corals, so they must have enough space to wave their long sweeper tentacles around without causing warfare in the aquarium. They can however, be placed near other torch corals (10 cm apart) that come from the same regions of Australia. 

Aussie Gold Torch Feeding

As already mentioned, Aussie Gold Torch corals are photosynthetic. This means they rely on photosynthesis for nutrition from the symbiotic algae that live within their tissues, called zooxanthellae. However, it is recommended you still feed them with foods such as mysis and brine shrimp, or coral powder food that contains plankton, two times a week. 

Aussie Gold Torch corals will also benefit from additional supplements, which can easily be added using a dosing pump. Dosing pumps are great; they do the job for you by manually dosing the water a few times a week with calcium, magnesium, and alkalinity, all of which are important for Aussie Gold Torches to thrive.

Aussie Gold Torch Survival Rate

Even if you are an experienced coral aquarist, Aussie Gold Torches can unexpectedly die from minor imbalances with the water parameters, therefore the key to the survival of these corals is tank stability. If you ensure the tank conditions are right, due to their spawning and reproductive capabilities, they can live for a very long time. 

So, what can you do to maximize their survival rate? Well, firstly you should follow the same approach as maximizing their growth, plus checking for parasites and pests that can make their way into the water.

Aussie Gold Torch Euphyllia is prone to brown jelly infections, particularly if the water flow is not strong enough in the aquarium. When keeping many torch corals, it is recommended to add probiotic bacteria to prevent brown jelly taking over and killing your corals. Treating brown jelly is difficult as the cause of outbreaks is still unknown, however, there may be hope if you catch it early. Some hobbyists have been successful by increasing the water flow slightly, “fragging” the coral, or doing an iodine coral dip for a maximum of 30 minutes. 

Also, keep your eye out for hitchhiking bubble algae, these are pests that can not only affect Aussie Gold Torches, but also other corals in your tank, usually resulting in coral death as the algae suffocate them. If you see bubble algae, as the name suggests, they can pop, releasing spores into the water. When removing them, you will want to prevent propagation, therefore, be extra careful to not rupture any of the bubbles. To prevent them from hitchhiking into the aquarium, thoroughly inspect and quarantine any live rock before adding it into the water. 

Unfortunately, the nightmare doesn’t end there. Aiptasia anemones are unwanted neighbors that can easily reproduce, are resistant to water parameter changes, and are extremely difficult to remove. Once they have claimed your Aussie Gold Torch coral, they will nestle their way in and will kill them. Dipping your corals with something like Coral RX before placing them in the aquarium will reduce the chances of Aiptasia, and can also prevent the above pests from entering the water. 

Closing Thoughts

Aussie Gold Torch corals are a mesmerizing and highly desirable Euphyllia species that are great for experienced coral reefers. Their swaying sweeper tentacles will stand out in your aquarium, showing off to anyone that passes by your aquarium. 

Remember that stability is key when it comes to the survival of corals. Always remember to check the water parameters frequently and ensure the placement is just right!

You are probably wondering how much this awesome coral is going to set you back…well, Aussie Gold Torch corals can cost anything between $200 and $400 – but trust me, they are well worth it which is why they are one of my favorites!

  • Roy Lee

    I have an unhealthy obsession with reef keeping and maintaining successful tanks. If you haven't noticed from the website, I love everything related to saltwater tanks like coral, fish, and everything else in between.

    http://reeftankadvisor.com reeftankroy@gmail.com Lee Roy

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