Milne Edwards and Haime, 1851
Stylaraea punctata (1)
Type species: Stylaraea punctata (Linnaeus, 1758)
Total number of species estimated: 1
Characteristics: Corals zooxanthellate; strikingly small (rarely up to 2 cm, usually less than 1 cm in diameter) and pea-shaped. Polyps (corallites) small (less than 1 mm), but clear immersed with a solid central columella and slightly developed septa. Colour light brown or light purple.
Ecology: Rare. In warm water at tidal pools less than 0.5 m deep, where the corals occur underneath the outward edges of dead coral boulders or pieces of massive coralline algae, usually just above the bottom sediment and never exposed to direct sunlight.
Range: Disjunct Indo-Pacific: eastern Africa and the Seychelles (Hoeksema and Best, 1992) in the Indian Ocean and from Indonesia (new records) to the Great Barrier Reef (Veron and Pichon, 1982) and Guam (Randall and Meyers, 1983) in the Pacific Ocean.
Additional remarks: The smallest of all zooxanthellate corals. Possibly often overlooked and hence not recorded from many localities. So far, the present records are the first and only two for the Indo-Malayan area: NW Java, Kepulauan Seribu, and SW Sulwesi, Spermonde Archipelago, Indonesia.
Key references: Veron and Pichon, 1982; Randall and Meyers, 1983; Veron, 1986, 2000; Hoeksema and Best, 1994.