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Caring Scolymia Coral

Scolymia are one of the most highly sought after large polyp stony corals in the reef keeping hobby. They’ve been popular ever since intensely colored specimens started being  collected in Australia. In the past few years, many corals have been reclassified, so what many people call Scolymia such as the ubiquitous Scolymia australis is now Homophyllia australis. Most people in the reef aquarium industry still refer to this coral as a Scolymia or Scoly. 


Scolys are found all over the tropical waters of the Pacific. The vast majority of the Scolymia found in the hobby today originate from the Great Barrier Reef or from reefs of the coast of Western Australia. Scoly we sell at ZBR, originate from Queensland and Western Australia. Western Australian Scoly are called Button Scoly. There is a Scoly for every price range, the ultimate Scoly's are usually called Ultra Scoly, Bleeding Apple Scoly, Warpaint Scoly, UFO Scoly or Master Scoly.



Scolymia are not the most light demanding coral. They are photosynthetic but anything around 100 PAR is adequate for their health. There is some variability to the intensity of their colours with changes in light strength, but developing better colours might have more to do with spectrum provided.

Personally like very robust spectrum T5 bulbs, but plenty of hobbyists have had good luck with them under high quality LED fixtures. While most of the time Scoly coloration is consistent, in some of the variants with the most number of colors, the coral may lose some of the colors that made them so desirable in the first place. If that is the case, the hobbyist might have to do some experimentation with different lighting technologies to attempt to regain some of the coloration.

Water Flow

Low to Moderate water movement is recommended. I personally shoot for just enough flow to carry away waste from their mouth. When placing the on the rock work, a slight angle helps rather than having them straight up and down for both viewing and waste removal.

Most people have them lower in the tank and possibly on the substrate. If placing them on rocks, be careful that nothing falls on them or they do not fall down on something else.

Water Chemistry

As with any stony coral, Scolymia make use of calcium, carbonate, and magnesium to build their skeletons so it is important to make sure that your water chemistry falls in line with natural sea water levels.

As far as calcium goes, it is one of the major ions in saltwater. In most healthy reefs, the calcium level hovers around 425 parts per million (ppm). 

Alkalinity is a little more difficult to explain than calcium. It is not a particular ion, but can be thought of as the buffering capacity of saltwater. Buffering capacity is the amount of acid required to lower the pH of saltwater to the point bicarbonate turns into carbonic acid. It sounds over technical, but in layman’s terms, higher alkalinity levels equate to greater chemical stability in our reef tanks. In practice alkalinity tends to be the parameter that fluctuates the most of the three and is the one that needs the most babysitting. In the wild, the alkalinity of the water is around 7-8 dkh. In an LPS dominated tank the corals tend to be slower growing and less taxing on major element supplementation.

It is good practice to periodically test just to make sure everything is in the ballpark of natural sea water levels. A couple parameters worth paying closer attention to is nitrate and phosphate. Scolymia are sensitive to declining water quality and elevated levels of nitrate and phosphate are an indicator of declining water quality. Low nitrate levels around 5-10ppm are actually welcome for large polyp stony corals.


Like most coral, Scolymia rely to a large extent on the products of their zooxanthellae, however, in our experience, they also benefit from direct feeding. We feed a mixture of frozen food and commercially made pellets and powders. Scolymia are such active feeders that they don’t really need to be spot fed too much because they are more than capable of grabbing food that floats by.


Please browse our LPS collection page to see what Scoly coral you can buy at ZBR.

Buy Scoly Coral Online



When will my order ship?

We ship orders out each Monday and Tuesday. Cut off time are Midnight Sunday or Monday. We may postpone shipments to the following week if we are advised by our shipping partner of delays or on public holidays. Information regarding tracking will be emailed once your order has shipped.

Is it possible to collect my order in person?

Customers have the option of picking up their orders locally by selecting the local pickup option during checkout. Upon placing an order, we will reach out to you within 24 hours to schedule a collection time. The pickup location is situated in Kingsgrove NSW.

Collections Times:

Weekdays - 9am - 2pm

Weekends - 9am -12pm

If required, we can arrange for collections outside of the above times as well.

In the event that my corals arrive deceased, what is the course of action?

To be eligible for our Arrive Alive Guarantee, it is necessary to send us well-defined pictures of the coral in its shipping container, within 2 hours of Star Track delivery time, via email at

For further information regarding the Arrive Alive Guarantee policy and claims process, kindly refer to our Arrive Alive Guarantee page.

With which courier company will my order be shipped?

We use Star Track Premium Express Freight to ship all of our orders as we have found them to be the most dependable door-to-door courier service accessible. We assess their performance every month to ensure the swiftest delivery service at a sensible cost. Additionally, we provide same-day airport-to-airport shipping, more details can be found on our Airport to Airport shipping page.

Do I have to be present at home to receive my order?

No, it is not necessary to be present as all orders are marked with an "Authority to leave" notice. If a secure and safe location is not available on your property and the order cannot be left at your doorstep, such as in the case of apartment buildings, we suggest having your order delivered to your workplace.

Can I expect the coral I see online to match what I receive in my order?

Shopping for live coral for sale online can be a source of worry for reef hobbyists, who can never be entirely sure what will arrive in the mail. Will it resemble the coral they saw online? While there is no substitute for an in-person viewing of the coral, we offer What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG) corals to alleviate concerns. Our WYSIWYG corals allow you to preview the actual coral fragment or colony before making a purchase. We take pride in photographing all our corals under Ecotech Radion G5 LED Light fixtures. We use professional-grade Full Frame DSLR cameras and lenses to capture the highest quality representation of the coral. We also provide multiple photos of the coral under different light spectrums, including full spectrum (white light) and heavy blue spectrum. We also offer size approximations for every coral in centimeters. This measurement is taken when the coral is fully expanded, providing you with a better understanding of the amount of space the coral will occupy in your aquarium.

What are the shipping costs?

  • Star Track Premium shipping service offers different rates based on the order amount.

  • Orders under $249 have a shipping cost of $45.
  • Orders $249 - $499 have a shipping cost of $29.
  • Orders $500 and over are shipped for free.

  • Same-day airport to airport shipping starts from $65. Lean more

How will my order be packaged?

Zeo Box Reef Aquaculture prides itself on being a leader in the industry for packaging and shipping corals. We have a meticulous approach to packaging methods to ensure that your order arrives in optimal condition. Our team carefully hand-picks and packs each order with great care. Coral fragments are placed in specially designed containers and secured using chemically inert foam floats. For larger corals, we use a double-bagging method and add activated carbon to achieve optimal water quality during shipping. To maintain the ideal temperature conditions during transit, we use thick-walled styrofoam boxes with heat/cold packs as needed. Our shipping options include door to door Star Track Premium freight or same day Airport-to-Airport delivery. Both options are fast and secure.