Many corals will live in harmony, however, there are a few corals that will do everything in their power to make their neighbor feel unwelcome, and trust me, you don’t want to take a gamble and place them too close to one of your well-established and healthy corals!
Torch corals are one of the most popular stony corals in reef aquariums because of their vibrant colors and long, thick tentacles that make your aquarium look fuller.
You may already be well aware of how fantastic-looking Torch Corals (Torches) are, but did you know that they can be aggressive? When it comes to getting yourself a Torch Coral, you must consider who they could potentially take a malicious swipe at with their long sweeper tentacles.
So, you already have an amazing Torch Coral and want to add more, and who blames you, they are fantastic additions to any saltwater reef tank! However, it is often confusing whether two Torch Corals be placed next to each other, and with the prices on these popular LPS (large stony polyp) corals on the rise, who would want to take a gamble on such a prized possession?
Can Torch Corals Be Placed Next To Each Other?
Some corals can be aggressive, and often different corals will attack others by stinging them to survive or to outcompete for space. Some, however, don’t mind having a neighbor, which is usually true if you place two of the same species of coral together.
With that in mind, Torches are known to be the most aggressive out of the Euphyllia family, so the questions hobbyists ask themselves when putting Torch Corals next to each other is totally valid.
However, when placing two of the same Torch Corals (Euphyllia glabrescens) next to each other, you shouldn’t have to worry about them fighting if they were to ever touch. Despite their long tentacles containing stinging cells, two of the same Torch Corals shouldn’t start a battle. Although, when it comes to placing your Torch Coral next to other Euphyllia corals like Frogspawns or Hammers, they may take a swipe, damaging and stinging them.
As Torch Corals originate from the Indo-Pacific region, there are two main categories for Torch Corals: Aussie Torches and Indo Torches. So, if two Torch Corals can be put next to each other, can Torch Corals from different regions coexist and live in peace?
Torch Corals from the same region can be placed next to each other, allowing at least 4 inches spacing for growth. Nonetheless, while many hobbyists would agree that Indo and Aussie Torches can be placed next to each other, Indo Torch Corals are slightly more aggressive than Aussie Torches. This may be due to Indo Torches having longer flowing polyps, and Aussie Torches short/stubbier polyps, therefore the Indo Torches can stretch and reach further than Aussie Torches.
So, if you decide to place Torch Corals from different regions together, you can, but it is advised to monitor them over a few weeks, or even months. If one of them seems unhappy, move it to an area where it cannot physically be touched by another Torch.
Can You Put Torch Corals Next To Other Corals?
As Torches are sometimes known to cause chaos inside aquariums, it is recommended to keep them separate from other corals in your aquarium, and allow plenty of space between different species (including other Euphyllia species).
But, if it is too late, and you have placed them next to other corals, keep a very close eye on them in the event they misbehave and start their attack.
How Much Space Should Torch Corals Have Between Other Corals?
The general guideline is to leave 6 inches between two different species of coral. Creating enough space ensures your Torch Corals will not stretch and sting each other and offers adequate space for optimum growth.
Torch Corals & Fish Compatibility
After adding another Torch Coral, you may be wanting to add some fish to create that mini-ocean look. Any reef-safe fish or invertebrates can be kept with Torch Corals. These include Tangs, Gobies, and Anthias.
Tank mates that you should avoid include Angelfish, Triggerfish, Puffers, Parrotfish, and Butterflyfish as these are known to nip your corals.
Signs Of A Coral In Distress
“Help. Help. Help” is the sound you will NEVER hear when one of your corals comes into the crossfire with a Torch Coral, this is because corals cannot speak to us.
Even though they cannot verbally communicate with you, there are a few things you can look out for if a coral starts to feel threatened.
- The coral victim may close their polyps in an attempt to take cover from their neighbors ‘dangerous’ long sweeper tentacles.
- Brown spots may appear on your coral’s polyps due to stress.
- Your coral may start shedding (also known as sloughing) its head where they have touched.
- In severe cases, your coral may start turning white due to damaged tissue. This makes corals more vulnerable to infections.
Corals have different personalities. Some are friendly and some are not so friendly. Torch Corals are the more unfriendly type when it comes to neighboring corals, but generally, with other Torch Corals, they are fine.
Although Aussie and Indo Torch Corals are considered compatible, it is recommended only to keep Torches from the same region together. Remember that when placing different corals next to each other, always monitor their behavior, and if one is unhappy, move it and try again.