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Heliofungia actiniformis

(Quoy and Gaimard, 1833)

Polyps are solitary, free-living (except for juveniles) and flat, with a central mouth. Septa have large lobed teeth. Polyps are among the largest of all corals. Tentacles are extended day and night and are long, similar to those of giant anemones. There is one mouth up to 30 millimetres wide.

Colour: Pale or dark blue-green or grey tentacles with white or pink tips. The oral disc is striped.

Habitat: Usually found on flat soft or rubble substrates especially in reef lagoons or shallow turbid environments.

Abundance: Common.

Similar species: Euphyllia glabrescens

Taxonomic note: Source reference: Veron (2000). Taxonomic references: Veron and Pichon (1980), Hoeksema (1989). Additional identification guides: Veron (1986), Nishihira and Veron (1995).

Map displaying probable distribution of species. Points indicate recorded sightings from OBIS.
Heliofungia actiniformis.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  This species sometimes forms anemone-like clusters in shallow turbid habitats.  Charlie Veron.

Heliofungia actiniformis. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. This species sometimes forms anemone-like clusters in shallow turbid habitats. Charlie Veron.

Heliofungia actiniformis.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Colour variations.  Roger Steene.

Heliofungia actiniformis. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Colour variations. Roger Steene.

Heliofungia actiniformis.  Philippines.  Colour variations.  Charlie Veron.

Heliofungia actiniformis. Philippines. Colour variations. Charlie Veron.

Heliofungia actiniformis.  Papua New Guinea.  Colour variations.  Roger Steene.

Heliofungia actiniformis. Papua New Guinea. Colour variations. Roger Steene.

Heliofungia actiniformis.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  The usual appearance of tentacles. These remain extended during the day and are very different from the tentacles of any Fungia.  Mary Stafford-Smith.

Heliofungia actiniformis. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. The usual appearance of tentacles. These remain extended during the day and are very different from the tentacles of any Fungia. Mary Stafford-Smith.

Heliofungia actiniformis.  Papua New Guinea.  Underside of a polyp.  Neville Coleman.

Heliofungia actiniformis. Papua New Guinea. Underside of a polyp. Neville Coleman.

Heliofungia actiniformis.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing upper surface.

Heliofungia actiniformis. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing upper surface.

Heliofungia actiniformis.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing lower surface.

Heliofungia actiniformis. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing lower surface.