species: Acropora hyacinthus in Lizard Island area: all known taxa (Lizard Island Field Guide)
Acropora hyacinthus

©Andy Lewis: A colony of Acropora hyacinthus at North Reef showing a brown colouration and the start of tiers

©Andy Lewis: Macro image of Acropora hyacinthus showing the typical form of the axial and radial corallites

©Andy Lewis: Multi-layered colonies of Acropora hyacinthus on the outer slope near South Island, Lizard Island before cyclones denuded this area in 2014 and 2015.
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Cnidaria
Class Hexacorallia
Order Scleractinia
Family Acroporidae
Genus Acropora
Species Acropora hyacinthus
Status near threatened



Distinguishing features

This species forms tables or plates. The branchlets are relatively uniform in size and are orientated upward. Axial polyps are distinct, and radial corallites are cup-like. At Lizard Island, colours include brown, light brown, and pinkish-red. Distinct green coloured specimens are seen on inshore reefs, but these are rare at Lizard. (Contributed by Andy Lewis).


  • Size data has not been obtained.


Similar taxa


©Atlas of Living Australia: Australian distribution

Distribution and habitat preferences

Upper reef slopes, reef crests, and lagoons.

Abundant in shallow habitats around Lizard Island.


Like most Acroporidae, this species is a hermaphrodite broadcast spawner, releasing gametes shortly after dark in the few days after the full moon in the warmer months between November and February.

Web resources


  • Abrego, D., M.J.H. Van Oppen and B.L. Willis (2009). Onset of algal endosymbiont specificity varies among closely related species of Acropora corals during early ontogeny, Molecular Ecology, 18: 3532-3543.
  • Alvarez-Noriega, M., A.H. Baird,2, M. Dornelas, J.S. Madin, V.R. Cumbo, and S.R. Connolly (2016). Fecundity and the demographic strategies of coral morphologies, Ecology, 97(12): 3485-3493. LIRS catalog number 2048.
  • Alvarez-Noriega, M., A.H. Baird, M. Dornelas, J.S. Madin and S.R. Connolly (2018). Negligible effect of competition on coral colony growth. Ecology, 99 (6): 1347-1356. LIRS catalog number 2239.
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