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Physogyra lichtensteini

(Milne Edwards and Haime,1851)

Colonies are massive or form thick plates. They are meandroid with short, widely separated valleys interconnected with light blistery coenosteum. Septa are large, solid, smooth edged, exsert and widely spaced. Walls are solid. Columellae are absent. Tentacles are extended only at night. During the day the whole colony surface is covered with a mass of vesicles the size of small grapes and are grape-like or bifurcated in shape. These retract when disturbed.

Colour: Pale grey, sometimes dull green.

Habitat: Turbid reef environments.

Abundance: Common in protected habitats such as crevices and overhangs, especially in turbid water with tidal currents.

Similar species: Plerogyra sinuosa

Taxonomic note: Taxonomic note: Colonies with very distinct septa were formerly considered a distinct species, Plerogyra exerta. Source reference: Veron (2000). Taxonomic reference: Veron and Pichon (1980). 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.
Physogyra lichtensteini.  Ryukyu Islands, Japan.  A mass of tubular vesicles masks the underlying structure of this large colony.  Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Ryukyu Islands, Japan. A mass of tubular vesicles masks the underlying structure of this large colony. Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Indonesia.  A small colony with vesicles sufficiently retracted to reveal the pattern of septa and valleys..  Valerie Taylor.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Indonesia. A small colony with vesicles sufficiently retracted to reveal the pattern of septa and valleys.. Valerie Taylor.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Philippines.  Parts of colonies with vesicles fully expanded.  Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Philippines. Parts of colonies with vesicles fully expanded. Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Solomon Islands.  Parts of colonies with vesicles fully retracted.  Roger Steene.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Solomon Islands. Parts of colonies with vesicles fully retracted. Roger Steene.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  With tentacles extended at night.  Ed Lovell.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. With tentacles extended at night. Ed Lovell.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Philippines.  Common variation in vesicle shapes.  Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Philippines. Common variation in vesicle shapes. Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Philippines.  Common variation in vesicle shapes.  Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Philippines. Common variation in vesicle shapes. Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Philippines.  Common variation in vesicle shapes.  Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Philippines. Common variation in vesicle shapes. Charlie Veron.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing valleys.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing valleys.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing colony surface.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing colony surface.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing colony surface.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing colony surface.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing a corallite.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing a corallite.

Physogyra lichtensteini.  Great Barrier Reef, Australia.  Showing valleys.

Physogyra lichtensteini. Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Showing valleys.