Characters: Colonies are seldom more than 0.5 metres across and are composed of uniform upright branches clearly distinct from the verrucae, but the latter are irregular in size. Branches are thick and compact in habitats exposed to strong wave action, becoming open and thinner in protected habitats. Bleached skeletons have permanently coloured red-brown main branches. Colour: Usually cream, brown or pink, sometimes blue. Similar species: Pocillopora meandrina, which has shorter, more flattened branches and smaller verrucae. See also P. danae, P. elegans and P. capitata. Habitat: Occurs in most shallow water environments from exposed reef fronts to protected fringing reefs. Abundance: Common.