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Alveopora spongiosa

Dana, 1846

Colonies are encrusting, submassive thick plates or cushions, or columnar. They have a flat or irregular surface and may be over 2 metres across. Corallites have long or short fine septal spines which seldom connect. Tips of polyp tentacles may be pointed or knob-like. Sometimes six large tentacles alternate with six small ones.

Colour: Usually uniform pale or dark brown, rarely green or other colours. Polyps sometimes have white tentacle tips.

Habitat: Protected upper reef slopes.

Abundance: Usually uncommon.

Similar species: Alveopora daedalea

Taxonomic note: Source reference: Veron (2000). Taxonomic reference: Veron and Pichon (1982). Additional identification guides: Veron (1986), Sheppard and Sheppard (1991), Nishihira and Veron (1995).

Map displaying probable distribution of species. Points indicate recorded sightings from OBIS.
Alveopora spongiosa.  Tanzania.  Colonies have a wide range of shapes and sizes.  Charlie Veron.

Alveopora spongiosa. Tanzania. Colonies have a wide range of shapes and sizes. Charlie Veron.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Papua New Guinea.  Colonies have a wide range of shapes and sizes.  Charlie Veron.

Alveopora spongiosa. Papua New Guinea. Colonies have a wide range of shapes and sizes. Charlie Veron.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing the spongy appearance of colonies with polyps retracted.  Ed Lovell.

Alveopora spongiosa. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing the spongy appearance of colonies with polyps retracted. Ed Lovell.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Houtman Abrolhos Islands, south-western Australia.  A lobed colony with polyps extended.  Ed Lovell.

Alveopora spongiosa. Houtman Abrolhos Islands, south-western Australia. A lobed colony with polyps extended. Ed Lovell.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Mainland Japan.  Small encrusting colony in a high latitude.  Charlie Veron.

Alveopora spongiosa. Mainland Japan. Small encrusting colony in a high latitude. Charlie Veron.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Colony with extended polyps .  Charlie Veron.

Alveopora spongiosa. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Colony with extended polyps . Charlie Veron.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Polyp detail.  Ed Lovell.

Alveopora spongiosa. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Polyp detail. Ed Lovell.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing corallites.

Alveopora spongiosa. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing corallites.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing corallite detail.

Alveopora spongiosa. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing corallite detail.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing corallite detail.

Alveopora spongiosa. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing corallite detail.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing corallite detail.

Alveopora spongiosa. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing corallite detail.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing colony shape.

Alveopora spongiosa. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing colony shape.

Alveopora spongiosa.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing colony shape.

Alveopora spongiosa. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing colony shape.