Wall Hammer Coral Care Guide
The Wall Hammer Coral is an LPS coral and is sometimes referred to as a Euphyllia Hammer Coral. Its called a Hammer coral as the tentacles have the looks of a hammer or anchor shapes. You can see their polyps easily but not so much of the skeletal base as it will be concealed by the coral.
The Wall Hammer is a great coral for beginners as they don’t need pristine water conditions to thrive. They can handle a range of tank conditions and grow fairly quickly. Hammer corals are easy to moderate to care for providing you follow a few simple rules.
Wall Hammer Coral Appearance
The Wall hammer coral tentacles are shaped like hammers or anvils. The tentacles are very short, but it’s possible to see some varieties with longer tentacles similar to the Torch Coral. They come in a range of colors, including green, tan, brown, pink, purple, blue, and orange. They can also be a mix of various colors and some have a metallic color which is vibrant under actinic lighting.
Wall Hammers can vary in size from a small 1 head frag to large 10″+ colonies. It’s common to see these corals sold in stores as a Wall Hammer at around the 4-5″ size range.
Ideal Water Parameters For Wall Hammers
Normal tank conditions for keeping hammer corals healthy should be the same as many other LPS corals. You don’t need to be overly picky about perfect water quality with these.
- Lighting: Low to moderate
- Water movement: Moderate
- PH: 8.1-8.3
- Salinity: 1.025
- Temperature: 78-79F
- Calcium: 400-450ppm
- Alkalinity: 8-11 dkh
- Magnesium: 1200-1350ppm
- Phosphates: 0
How To Feed Wall Hammer Corals
Like most coral, Wall hammers rely on zooxanthellae. But you should consider spot feeding or direct feeding them as well. They will benefit from additional food fed every week in the form of micro-plankton or brine shrimp. Using quality coral food can also be used.
Euphilia corals do not aggressively feed like some other LPS coral types and although it can be a challenge at times, it is worth feeding them on a regular basis.
How To Frag Wall Hammer Corals?
Fragging a Wall Hammer coral is not as easy as a Branching Hammer coral. They are different in how you should attempt to frag them. Branching hammer corals are quite easy to frag as there are several branches and the skeleton of the coral is easily cut while avoiding the coral tissues.
Wall Hammers are more complex. These corals do not have branches, they are a pattern of the same coral within the same skeleton. It’s almost impossible to frag without damaging the coral tissue and tentacles as there are no natural gaps. The best way to frag these corals is to use a Dremel tool. Once the coral tentacles retract, you will see the skeleton structure and shape. Use the Dremel tool to cut through the skeleton where you want to frag it. Once cut, you can shape the bottom of the skeleton and glue to another piece of rock if wanted.
It’s important not to bury the new frag into the sand substrate as this could cause an infection as bacteria will attack the damaged coral tissues. After a period of days to weeks, you will notice the healing of the tissues and tentacles will start to reform. Learn more about coral fragging here.
Compatibility With Other Corals
The Wall hammer coral can be aggressive to other corals that are close to them. Like all Euphillia corals, they have long sweeping tentacles that can sting others intruding in their space. Generally, this is not a problem, but on occasion, you will see them extend their tentacles, which can reach up to 6″ in length.
Therefore, it’s a good idea to provide plenty of space between them and other corals. Hammer corals can touch other hammers. They typically won’t sting each other.
Here is a great video discussing coral aggression and placement in the tank.
Where To Place Wall Hammers In The Tank
These corals prefer to be located in the bottom part of your tank. Placing them up high in your tank close to the lighting and high water flow is not a good idea. Typically, down low in the tank is where the lighting will be at a low to moderate strength and the water flow is medium at most. This is where they will thrive.
I have had the most success with Wall hammers when placed on the bottom of the tank in between or beside another rock formation.
Lighting Requirements For Wall hammer Corals
As mentioned above, Wall hammers have a low to moderate lighting requirement. They will do well under LED and T5 lighting providing they meet the requirement. When measuring aquarium lighting, it’s important to look at the PAR rating to determine low, medium, and high.
- 30-50 PAR = low lighting
- 50-150 PAR = medium lighting
- Above 150 PAR = high lighting
Using a PAR meter, you can check the par levels at certain heights within your tank. Wall Hammers should be kept at the low to medium par range.
How Much Water Flow Is Required For Wall Hammer Corals?
As mentioned above, these corals will do well in low to moderate water flow. If they are placed in high flow areas of your tank, they tend to not open up, and they will not be able to extend. This is not healthy for them. Plan to have a proper-sized wavemaker for your tank that will provide a low to moderate flow rate. You can read more about wavemaker sizes and turnover rates here.
Why Is My Wall Hammer Not Opening And Showing Its Skeleton?
If your Hammer coral is not doing well, check your water parameters to see if something is off. Many of these corals will not open if they are in an area of high water flow and lighting. You can move the coral to another location in the tank to see if it becomes more comfortable. Also, check to make sure it has plenty of space between it and other corals. If the coral is new to your tank, it may need time to adjust. Always make sure to acclimate your livestock prior to putting them in your tank.
Where To Buy Wall Hammer Corals And Cost
These corals are normally available at your local reef store and online. They are easy to find and are affordable. You will likely find them through a local online reef club or forum. You can also buy them at Liveaquaria.com, and they are normally around $80-100 for a 4″ piece.