Top 10 Zoanthids and Palythoas for Saltwater Reef Tanks!

by George Mavrakis on December 13, 2021

Zoanthids come in a variety of different colonizing formations and numerous colors, often referred to as morphs. Zoanthids are amongst the most commonly collected coral in the saltwater aquarium hobby. They're easily propagated and are known for being very hardy in a variety of water parameters, making them a great soft coral for beginners! Here is my list of the top 10 Zoanthids for reef aquariums.


10. Orange Bam Bams 

Orange is not a very common color found in a reef tank, so these Zoanthids will make a stunning addition. They are relatively cheap, and the majority of hobbyists report five new polyps every month. Most of the time, the skirts are thin and long, giving them a very wavy look.


 9. Blueberry Fields blueberry fields zoanthids top zoanthids

Blueberry Field zoanthids are probably the most underrated Zoanthids available to saltwater aquarium hobbyists today. These are also very cheap and grow very fast. The baby blue color will also give you a reef aquarium a very unique look.


 8. Fire and Ice fire and ice zoanthids best zoanthids

Fire and Ice are a beautiful species of Zoanthids that are sought after for their brilliant steel and blue and red coloration. Aquacultured Fire and Ice Zoanthids tend to do best in aquarium environments. I don't know many people who like Zoanthids who have never tried Fire and Ice; they are very common for beginners!


 7. My Clementines my clementines zoanthids corals

These are a relatively small Zoanthids that grow rapidly. The punch of colors will compliment any saltwater aquarium really well. I've seen them sell for $10 to $40 a polyp. They’re some of the coolest Zoanthids around!


 6. Sunny Delights sunny delight zoanthids

Sunny Delights are beautiful Palythoas. They get their name from the bright green body with intense orange highlights. They tolerate a wide range of light and appreciate low to medium flow. They sell for an average cost of $25 a polyp, and many hobbyists have reported exceptional growth rates, like most palythoas.


 5. Rastas rastas zoanthids

The Rasta Zoanthid is a beautiful green and orange with a metallic light shimmer that is sure to please the eye. This is also one of the more sought-after Zoanthids in the hobby right now. I've seen them sell for $20 to $50 a polyp. And although they don't grow too quickly, they are a must-have if you like Zoanthids.


 4. Utter Chaos utter chaos zoanthids

The Utter Chaos is a high-end Palythoa that has to be on every reef tank hobbyist’s wishlist. With a gorgeous orange body, it will stand out in any display tank. It sells for an average cost of $50 a polyp, but it has been known to sell for much more. Many hobbyists have reported exceptional growth, just like other Palythoa. (Which you better hope pays off, considering how much you spent on it!)


 3. Blue Agave People Eater blue agave people eater zoanthids zoas zoa

This Palythoa coral clearly stands out against other polyps. Its skirt is highlighted with faint touches of turquoise, while the mouth is glowing neon green. These bad boys sell for a solid $25 a polyp. They grow fast and are sitting cool at the number three spot on this list.


 2. Hornets rainbow hornets zoanthids zoas

It’s hard to imagine that such a coral could be real. When first introduced, this Zoanthid set the world of reef tanks on fire. Most Hornets are extremely expensive depending on their color. My personal favorite are the blue Hornets, but there are also some rarer ones like the red and purple Hornets. These are on most collectors’ wishlists.


 1. Fruit Loops fruit loops zoanthids best zoas palythoas

These Zoanthids are from another world. Colored blue, green, and orange, they only sell for an average price of $15 per polyp. Although they are considered hardy, they've been known to take their time to adjust to a new aquarium. Hobbyists have reported taking them up to a couple of weeks to open after shipment. But they have a steady growth rate and definitely deserve the title of the best Zoanthid!


To learn more about the best Zoanthids and Palythoas, check out this video!