Animalia > Cnidaria > Anthozoa > Scleractinia > Acroporidae > Acropora > Acropora palmata

Acropora palmata (Elkhorn coral)

Synonyms: Acropora alces; Acropora flabellum; Isopora muricata f. palmata; Madrepora alces; Madrepora cornuta; Madrepora flabellum; Madrepora muricata f. palmata; Madrepora palmata; Madrepora perampla; Madrepora thomassiana

Wikipedia Abstract

Elkhorn coral (Acropora palmata) is considered to be one of the most important reef-building corals in the Caribbean. This species is structurally complex with many large branches. The coral structure resembles that of elk antlers. These branches create habitats for many other reef species, such as lobsters, parrot-fish, snapper shrimps and other reef fish. Elkhorn coral colonies are incredibly fast-growing, with an average growth rate of 5 to 10 cm (2.0 to 3.9 in) per year and can eventually grow up to 3.7 m (12 ft) in diameter. The color of this coral species ranges from brown to a yellowish-brown as a result of the symbiotic zooxanthellae living inside the tissue of this coral species. Zooxanthellae are a type of algae which photosynthesize to provide the coral with nutrients. The zooxa
View Wikipedia Record: Acropora palmata

Endangered Species

Status: Critically Endangered
View IUCN Record: Acropora palmata


Diet [1]  Herbivore, Planktivore
Nocturnal [1]  Yes
Water Biome [1]  Reef, Coastal

Prey / Diet

Acartia lilljeborgi[2]
Acartia spinata[2]
Acartia tonsa[2]
Brachyscelus crusculum[2]
Centropages furcatus[2]
Dioithona oculata[2]
Ditrichocorycaeus amazonicus[2]
Ditrichocorycaeus americanus[2]
Euchaeta marina[2]
Eurydice littoralis[2]
Euterpina acutifrons[2]
Farranula gracilis[2]
Flaccisagitta enflata[2]
Fritillaria haplostoma[2]
Glossocephalus milneedwardsi[2]
Krohnitta subtilis[2]
Labidocera acutifrons[2]
Lestrigonus bengalensis[2]
Microsetella rosea[2]
Oikopleura dioica[2]
Oikopleura longicauda[2]
Oithona colcarva[2]
Oithona nana[2]
Oithona plumifera[2]
Oithona simplex[2]
Oncaea mediterranea[2]
Oncaea venusta[2]
Paracalanus aculeatus[2]
Paracalanus parvus[2]
Parvocalanus crassirostris[2]
Penilia avirostris[2]
Serratosagitta serratodentata[2]
Undinula vulgaris[2]


Attiliosa nodulosa (Abbreviated coral snail)[3]
Calliostoma javanicum (chocolate-line topsnail)[2]
Canthigaster rostrata (Sharpnose pufferfish)[2]
Chaetodon capistratus (School mistress)[2]
Chaetodon ocellatus (Two-spotted butterflyfish)[3]
Chaetodon sedentarius (School mistress)[2]
Chaetodon striatus (School mistress)[3]
Coralliophila aberrans (globose coralsnail)[2]
Coralliophila caribaea (Caribbean coralsnail)[4]
Coralliophila galea (helmet coralsnail)[4]
Diadema antillarum (long-spined sea urchin)[5]
Entomacrodus nigricans (Pearl Blenny)[2]
Hermodice carunculata (Fireworm)[2]
Microspathodon chrysurus (Yellowtail damselfish)[2]
Phragmatopoma caudata[2]
Prognathodes aculeatus (Poey's butterflyfish)[2]

Institutions (Zoos, etc.)

Institution Infraspecies / Breed 
Aquarium & Rainforest at Moody Gardens
Florida Aquarium
John G. Shedd Aquarium
Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo
Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium
Zoo Zürich
Zoological Society of London


W Atlantic;



Attributes / relations provided by
1Myers, P., R. Espinosa, C. S. Parr, T. Jones, G. S. Hammond, and T. A. Dewey. 2006. The Animal Diversity Web (online). Accessed February 01, 2010 at
2Jorrit H. Poelen, James D. Simons and Chris J. Mungall. (2014). Global Biotic Interactions: An open infrastructure to share and analyze species-interaction datasets. Ecological Informatics.
3Impact of coral predators on tropical reefs, Randi D. Rotjan, Sara M. Lewis, Mar Ecol Prog Ser 367: 73–91, 2008
4del Monaco, Carlos, Estrella Villamizar, and Samuel Narciso. "Selectivity of preys of Coralliophila abbreviata and C. caribaea in coral reefs of the National Park Morrocoy, Venezuela: an experimental approximation/Selectividad de presas de Coralliophila abbreviata y C. caribaea en arrecifes coralinos del Parque Nacional Morrocoy, Venezuela: una aproximacion experimental." Latin American Journal of Aquatic Research 38.1 (2010): 57+. Academic OneFile. Web. 15 July 2014.
5Predation of the Sea Urchin Diadema antillarum Philippi on Living Coral, Rolf P. M. Bak and Guillaume van Eys, Oecologia (Berl.) 20, 111-115 (1975)
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