They're not easy to keep alive, and a lot of them just slowly die over time. The best ones seem to be the Red with blue centers or the Gray with Purple tips. ORA has the Red one, which from some people have had great success with. There are also a couple of foods that are out that may help keep them alive.
There use to be a web site, gonipora.org, which had some pretty good results with them. I'm not sure if it's still around.
gonioporas are extremely hard to keep and usually do the best like any coral in large systems. they usually do better in slightly "dirty" tanks meant more for filter feeders like sea fans and gorgonians. they tend to end up slowly dying out after about 6 months because of not being fed enough no matter how much you feed them. ORA has been growing them and one of my favorites is Jason Fox's goniopora which is bright pink with yellow centers. I was hesitant to get the frag at first but i got it at the end of the swap for a deal. he assured me that it was the only gonio that he could not only keep alive but get to grow just by me being able to see the healed edges of the cut frag
Successfully keeping most Goniopora is somewhat like successfully keeping an elephant: it's possible, but the average person is not equipped to do it As mentioned, there are a handful that require less feeding and tend to do much better, such as the red one cultured by ORA. Most that you'll see in stores (e.g., G. stokesii) are seriously challenging. They need lots of appropriate food, and water quality needs to be maintained as well. Any organism for which this is true is difficult to keep in captivity, requires a degree of expertise (i.e., keeping and growing a typical reef tank should be easy), and requires a fair bit of work. They're beatiful, but in almost all cases I'd pass.
I don't know why people keep saying some of these corals are hard to keep or an anemone I previously kept that flourished as well.
I have a gonipora that his been in my tank for atleast 2+ months and ABSOLUTELY NO PROBLEMS. my true perc is actually hosting it.
It is a better piece than a GSP as well since GSP can get out of control. mine is about a baseball size when pulled in but bloats upto atleast 7inches or more at times.
Mine has done very well. It is a beautiful piece as well.
Don't be deterred but also don't be foolish if you can't make other corals flourish like SPS.
btw, I am no expert. There are a ton of guys on here you can call a guru. Keep to your husbandry, watch your parameters, let your system mature before you add in such additions like the gonipora. I can't say truly keep to your parameters if you do your husbandry like you should. I personally don't test right now until I decide if I will start to dose.
It's a very tough coral to keep alive, especially the long green ones that they sell at sunflower coral. It's really hard to tell if it's doing well, as in the beginning it's fully open and look like it doing great. This usually goes on for a number of months, then around 5 -7 months it starts to lose tentacles and then all of a sudden it just dies. Most people think it's from starvation, though I don't think anyone really know for sure. Some new food has just come out, specifically for Gonipora, but I'm not sure if that's what they need to keep them alive or not.
The ones that I currently have in my tank are the type that seem to do the best, Red with Blues eyes and Gray with Purple Tips. I also have Alveopora, which is hardier and seems to make it. I have mine on the bottom of the tank, on the sand, with not a lot of light or flow. Most people that have success with them have a lot of flow on them and towards the bottom of the tank. The only people that I know that had success were at gonipora.org, though I'm not sure if that web site is around anymore. They actually not only kept them alive but had growth too. The Red one from ORA seems to actually grow, so there maybe hope for keeping this coral long term.
Odd as can be , i have a pink and a purple one and they are doing good , im not an expert by a mile but i have them almost a year and im caring for them for a friend and im not sure how long he had them for but like i said they are alive and well.
I hate to be blunt, but keeping a Goniopora alive for 2 months is effectively meaningless. Usually they appear fine for a few months and then, after 2-6 months in captivity, slowing begin to go down hill and eventually waste away. People say that they are difficult because of the tens of thousands that have been imported into this country, perhaps a few dozen people have had any real success with G. stokesii (the species most commonly available and commonly bought). That's a success rate of maybe 0.0001%, at best.
Based on the few cases of repeatable success that have been reported, and the pattern of decline, the corals are simply starving to death in captivity and thus far it is very challenging to provide them with enough of the right kind of food, where feasible at all. Methods that allow many other corals to flourish simply don't work for G. stokesii.
The only cases of frequent success are with some of the less common species, such as the red one cultured by ORA, and the secret to their success seems to be that they are less demanding of food. Even these are challenging though and I've seen many, many cases of them collapsing in the tanks of even very successful aquarists.