Zoa placement for a rookie


New member
I just got my first set of coral frags.

I am running a biocube 29 with stock lighting (10000k and actinic 36w).

I put the birdsnest (birds of paradise) top and center. It seems to be opening up well. There is the return pump right behind it, so it has high flow and light.

The bam bams and joker zoas are in the sand for now because I have read that you should start them in the sand bed and slowly move them up.


What is the recommended placement for the zoas?
Ive read low light and close to the bottom for jokers, but high light and closer to the top for bam bams. Looking for any verification or experience with these.

Thanks from a newb!


New member
There are theories out there but in the end you have the right method, start em low and move them up gradually and see where they look happiest.

One of the theories is red, oranges and yellows like more light higher placement than blues and greens, but I cant say I have found this to be true, my fire n ice are extremely happy at the top with my SPS and it is red and blue. I would say, from my experience, blues like lower placement, my blue deaths, Caribbean blues and Tubbs Blues all like lower placement. Most of the other colors don't seem to care......we will see if that changes with the switchover from t5ho to led this week.


New member
You can also tell if its not getting enough light if its extending its stalk. I have seen the smallest Zoas extend out quite a ways.

Basically If its polyp is close to the rock and fully open you know its happy.


New member
In my experience with Z's and P's, zoas are placed in the mid-range or low level, as for paly's some can tolarate high level in the tank, you also need to consider the flow.


New member
thanks! The bam bams seem to be very happy in the sand, so I will probably place them on a low rock. The jokers (purple and green) are only opening a few of the heads, so I will probably try them a little higher up. Im giving everything until the weekend to settle in.