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Montipora digitata

(Dana, 1846)

Colonies are digitate or arborescent with anastomosing upright branches. Corallites are immersed and small, especially in colonies from shallow water. The coenosteum is smooth.

Colour: Pale cream or brown, sometimes pink or blue.

Habitat: Shallow reef environments. May be a dominant species of shallow mud flats.

Abundance: Common.

Similar species: Montipora altasepta , Montipora samarensis

Taxonomic note: Taxonomic note: This species is divisible into several smaller semi-distinct taxonomic units. Source reference: Veron (2000). Taxonomic reference: Veron and Wallace (1984). Additional identification guides: Veron (1986), Nishihira and Veron (1995).

Map displaying probable distribution of species. Points indicate recorded sightings from OBIS.
Montipora digitata.  Philippines.  Open branched colony.  Charlie Veron.

Montipora digitata.Philippines.Open branched colony.Charlie Veron.

Montipora digitata.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Colony on a shallow reef flat.  Ed Lovell.

Montipora digitata.Great Barrier Reef, Australia.Colony on a shallow reef flat.Ed Lovell.

Montipora digitata.  Micronesia.  Colonies in shallow water commonly have flattened branches.  Pat Colin.

Montipora digitata.Micronesia.Colonies in shallow water commonly have flattened branches.Pat Colin.

Montipora digitata.  Philippines.  Detail of branches.  Charlie Veron.

Montipora digitata.Philippines.Detail of branches.Charlie Veron.

Montipora digitata.  Philippines.  Detail of branches.  Charlie Veron.

Montipora digitata.Philippines.Detail of branches.Charlie Veron.

Montipora digitata.  Philippines.  Branches of differing Montipora digitata (smooth Branches)/stellata (prominent coenosteum ridges)/hirsuta (thicker knobby branches with coenosteum ridges near the tips).  Charlie Veron.

Montipora digitata.Philippines.Branches of differing Montipora digitata (smooth Branches)/stellata (prominent coenosteum ridges)/hirsuta (thicker knobby branches with coenosteum ridges near the tips).Charlie Veron.

Montipora digitata. Skeletal detail.  Geoff Kelly.

Montipora digitata.Skeletal detail.Geoff Kelly.

Montipora digitata.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing branches.

Montipora digitata.Great Barrier Reef, Australia.Showing branches.

Montipora digitata.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing branching pattern.

Montipora digitata.Great Barrier Reef, Australia.Showing branching pattern.

Montipora digitata.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing whole colony.

Montipora digitata.Great Barrier Reef, Australia.Showing whole colony.

Montipora digitata.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing branching pattern.

Montipora digitata.Great Barrier Reef, Australia.Showing branching pattern.