Forms dome-shaped colonies usually less than 1 m in diameter with large phaceloid corallites less than 3 cm in diameter. When a live, the several centimeters long, unbranched, brown tentacles easily distinguishes this species.
Torch Coral habitat
This species is found in a wide range of reef environments. E. glabrescens is commonly found from 12-15 m, rarely from 9-11 m, in the South China Sea and Gulf of Siam (Titlyanov and Titlyanova 2002). This species may be found from 1-35 m.
All members of the genus Euphyllia have commensal shrimp species associated with them.
This species is targeted for the aquarium trade. Indonesia is the largest exporter with an annual quota of 28,000 live pieces in 2005. Fiji had an export quota of 6,000 pieces in 2005.
In general, the major threat to corals is global climate change, in particular, temperature extremes leading to bleaching and increased susceptibility to disease, increased severity of ENSO events and storms, and ocean acidification.
Coral disease has emerged as a serious threat to coral reefs worldwide and a major cause of reef deterioration (Weil et al. 2006). The numbers of diseases and coral species affected, as well as the distribution of diseases have all increased dramatically within the last decade (Porter et al. 2001, Green and Bruckner 2000, Sutherland et al. 2004, Weil 2004). Coral disease epizootics have resulted in significant losses of coral cover and were implicated in the dramatic decline of acroporids in the Florida Keys (Aronson and Precht 2001, Porter et al. 2001, Patterson et al. 2002). In the Indo-Pacific, disease is also on the rise with disease outbreaks recently reported from the Great Barrier Reef (Willis et al. 2004), Marshall Islands (Jacobson 2006) and the northwestern Hawaiian Islands (Aeby 2006). Increased coral disease levels on the GBR were correlated with increased ocean temperatures (Willis et al. 2007) supporting the prediction that disease levels will be increasing with higher sea surface temperatures. Escalating anthropogenic stressors combined with the threats associated with global climate change of increases in coral disease, frequency and duration of coral bleaching and ocean acidification place coral reefs in the Indo-Pacific at high risk of collapse.
Localized threats to corals include fisheries, human development (industry, settlement, tourism, and transportation), changes in native species dynamics (competitors, predators, pathogens and parasites), invasive species (competitors, predators, pathogens and parasites), dynamite fishing, chemical fishing, pollution from agriculture and industry, domestic pollution, sedimentation, and human recreation and tourism activities.
The severity of these combined threats to the global population of each individual species is not known.