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FAQs on Anemone Health 5

FAQs on Anemone Disease: Anemone Disease 1, Anemone Disease 2, Anemone Disease 3, Anemone Disease 4, Anemone Disease 5, Anemone Disease 6, Anemone Disease 7, Anemone Health 8, Anemone Health 9, Anemone Disease 10, Anemone Disease 11, Anemone Disease 12, Anemone Disease , &
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Related Articles: Anemones, Bubble Tip AnemonesLTAs, Cnidarians, Dyed Anemones

Related FAQs: Cnidarian Disease, Anemones, Anemones 2, LTAs, Caribbean Anemones, Condylactis, Aiptasia Anemones, Anemones and Clownfishes, Anemone Reproduction, Anemone Identification, Anemone Compatibility, Anemone Behavior, Anemone Selection, Anemone Placement, Anemone FeedingAnemone SystemsAnemone Lighting

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Anemone Success
Doing what it takes to keep Anemones healthy long-term

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Anemone in trouble 19 Aug 2004 Hi <Hi Chris, MacL here with you today.> I  have read up a lot on your page. I know I don't have a lot of lighting and my tank is only a month old but I have ran into a problem with my Long Tentacle Anemone that I bought from the LFS. At first it wouldn't eat. In the past week it has finally taken food. <That's a good start. Perhaps starting to settle in.> I feed it Mysis shrimp daily. I squirt the food on the tentacles. <I'm thinking that you might do a bit better with it if you use something a tad larger.  Perhaps a small silverside? Piece of shrimp or clam? and soaked in vitamins is a good idea as well.> I'm gonna get to the point. Since the day I have got it it has had what appears to be black stripes on the inside of it. Yesterday it took a crap out of its mouth. I thought I was doing right. <Yeah I looked at the pictures its an anemone in distress and bleached out.> (I finally got it to eat and now its eliminating waste)<Actually a good sign.> Today though it took a turn for the worst and looks like its trying to get this black stuff out of it. To try and make this shorter I have a link on another forum of me explaining my problem with very detailed pics.   http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=422599. Chris there isn't much you can do but let nature take its course and keep clean healthy water on it. No ammonia, no nitrates etc. Give it good food with vitamins, Good lighting spectrum is important as well. I find Actinic is best along with daylight. I would keep it very stable and solid in on tank and not move it around. Good medium current to keep food coming in that direction. It needs to be in one tank and allowed to become stable. Don't give up on it, I have brought bleached and suffering anemones back before.  Good luck and please keep us updated, MacL> Please help Thanks, Chris

BTA Tear on Foot Bob & Crew, <John> John here. I've got a quick question for you today.  I received a BTA from a distributor that I've had good success with in the past.  The BTA is a great specimen except upon further inspection when I held up the shipping bag I found there to be a significant tear directly in the middle of it's foot. <Very common... hard to remove in the wild>   From what I've heard, my impression is that the outlook is pretty grim.  I've attached a picture. <Not good>   Some "matter" was floating in the bag & I did see a little bit come out from the wound when transferring him from the bag after acclimation.  I made the tough call to put him straight into the display.  I feared the additional move out of QT (hopefully alive) wouldn't be beneficial to the tender foot. <... better than the havoc that this specimen dying, dissolving may have in your main tank...> I also thought that if he went south in the 20g QT he might take my Flame Angel with him.  I figured if I kept a close eye on him & having the extra volume of my display system (180g) I could absorb any decline better than the QT if he started to go. <Maybe> The lighting would be better in the display too.  Good call or bad, it's the one I made at the time with the thought being to give him the best shot at living.  He did inflate fairly quickly (15m after introduction), displayed bulb tips & attach in a crack between 2 pieces of LR.  However, he did deflate some and re-inflate throughout the afternoon.  Probably fairly normal after being in a bag the previous 18 hours. <Yes>   What did concern me was that he did disconnect from the rock and arch the foot up for about 15m this evening.  I could see the wound again at that point - it looked the same. Any suggestions on how best to help this BTA? <Hope, keep your eye on it, don't move the animal...> Is it possible that the shipping caused stress to induce a split, as in propagate? <Not with this sort of injury, no>   I doubt it, but that would be the best solution.  I have a RBTA for over a year now, although he has increased his size & color since I've had him, he's never split, so I don't know where they start the process. <Can be schizogynous, just a piece of the disc separating... or entire, as across the mouth...> Just looking to give him the best care possible.  Could something as crazy as manually propagating him be a solution? <Not a good idea... with the animal in the present condition it would almost certainly expire> I believe Anthony talked about doing it to a RBTA, be it a healthy one though. (See attached file: BTA Damaged Foot1.JPG) Thanks, John <Mmm, Antoine is unfortunately presently "out" (giving some pitches in S. Cal. I believe. Will put this in his in-box for his input a few days hence. Bob Fenner>

BTA Tear on Foot - Anthony's turn 8/26/04 Bob & Crew, <John> <<Anthony here in double carrots>> John here. I've got a quick question for you today.  I received a BTA from a distributor that I've had good success with in the past.  The BTA is a great specimen except upon further inspection when I held up the shipping bag I found there to be a significant tear directly in the middle of it's foot. <Very common... hard to remove in the wild> <<and savvy resellers keep anemones in plastic carpet (like outdoor turf) lined tanks for safe and easy removal - retailers do consider this tip if not doing it already>> From what I've heard, my impression is that the outlook is pretty grim.  I've attached a picture. <Not good> Some "matter" was floating in the bag & I did see a little bit come out from the wound when transferring him from the bag after acclimation.  I made the tough call to put him straight into the display.   <<Yikes... a scary/bad call here, mate>> I feared the additional move out of QT (hopefully alive) wouldn't be beneficial to the tender foot. <... better than the havoc that this specimen dying, dissolving may have in your main tank...> <<wow... very much agreed with Bob here. QT is critical for such/so many reasons>> I also thought that if he went south in the 20g QT he might take my Flame Angel with him.  I figured if I kept a close eye on him & having the extra volume of my display system (180g) I could absorb any decline better than the QT if he started to go. <Maybe> The lighting would be better in the display too.  Good call or bad, it's the one I made at the time with the thought being to give him the best shot at living.   <<you have underestimated the need for lighting in QT (it is low) for new/stressed corals and anemones that really just need a safe, quiet place to settle in and can easily be compensated for with feeding. And spare the risk of death and disease to display animals otherwise>> He did inflate fairly quickly (15m after introduction), displayed bulb tips & attach in a crack between 2 pieces of LR.  However, he did deflate some and re-inflate throughout the afternoon.  Probably fairly normal after being in a bag the previous 18 hours. <Yes> What did concern me was that he did disconnect from the rock and arch the foot up for about 15m this evening.  I could see the wound again at that point - it looked the same. Any suggestions on how best to help this BTA? <Hope, keep your eye on it, don't move the animal...> <<ditto... DO NOT move stressed animals>> Is it possible that the shipping caused stress to induce a split, as in propagate? <Not with this sort of injury, no> I doubt it, but that would be the best solution.  I have a RBTA for over a year now, although he has increased his size & color since I've had him, he's never split, so I don't know where they start the process. <Can be schizogynous, just a piece of the disc separating... or entire, as across the mouth...> Just looking to give him the best care possible.  Could something as crazy as manually propagating him be a solution? <Not a good idea... with the animal in the present condition it would almost certainly expire> <<agreed - no cutting of the stressed animal>> I believe Anthony talked about doing it to a RBTA, be it a healthy one though. <<true... its as easy as simply cutting a healthy and established BTA in half - quite successful>> (See attached file: BTA Damaged Foot1.JPG) Thanks, John <Mmm, Antoine is unfortunately presently "out" (giving some pitches in S. Cal. I believe. Will put this in his in-box for his input a few days hence. Bob Fenner> <<back from Cali and a wonderful time with the SoCal club and Scott and Nadine/MASLAC Los Angeles friends. Kind regards to all, Anthony>>
Thanks! - Advice for BTA Tear on Foot Bob & Anthony, <John> Thanks so much for the advice from both of you on the BTA that I received with the foot tear.  He still seems to be doing very well - around 10 days now.   <Ah, very good news> He's stayed in the same spot  since day 1 with no wandering and I've never seen his foot again.  I certainly won't be doing anything to get a better look at the injury.  How long do you think it will be before he's fully healed and clear of any infections to the injury? <Perhaps a few weeks to months> He looks great, but I still worry in the back of my mind about the tear. Thanks again, John <Bob Fenner>

Anemone splitting? I can't see the foot or the tear due to the BTA being secured in a crack in the LR.  However, it looks really good - certainly not like an animal that has a torn foot.   As a matter of fact, it looks like it may have indeed split.  I can't confirm it, but it looks like two separate animals and it sure has spread out over a large area. << Well that would be great. >> On the higher anemone section, I can see an edge almost all the way around.  I can't see the back part, but there is definitely an edge between the 2 sections of anemones.  I can't confirm separate mouths or feet yet either. << That is okay, just give it time. >> I'm attaching two pics.  Am I being blinded by optimism? << Nope, it looks healthy and good to me. >> My female perc is fairly large (2+ inches) to give a perspective.  I would have preferred my pair of clowns stay in the RTBA while the new BTA heals, but not much I can do at this point.  At least they're just laying/swimming on it & not burrowing.  It took them 2 months to go into the RBTA & all of 6 hours to go into this one - go figure. I'm thinking at this point the best thing to do is just observe - no treatment or changes.  Would you suggest anything different? << That sounds good. >> Thanks, John <<  Blundell  >>

Rose Anemone Hello Crew, <Hi, MikeD here> I have a rose anemone that seems to be splitting. It has changed from looking normal and stretched into this long piece. How long does it take to split?<Although it's possible, this doesn't sound like splitting to me, but rather like an anemone that's gradually breaking down.> Also I have a clown fish that has Popeye. I think it is injury related and not a bacteria but possibly may be from the protein skimmers bubbles and aeration?<Again, possible, but unlikely> Is there anything I can do?<Here's a couple of suggestions. 1) check your lighting as many anemones require very good lighting, sometimes at least VHO's and always with bulbs that are regularly changed out as the wavelength drops rapidly after 6 months or so. 2) check your water parameters regularly as any ammonia or nitrate can be deadly and even chronic high nitrates can have an adverse effect. To be of any further help I'd need to know if it's a reef or FOWLR tank, what the size and fish load are, and of course, normal water parameters.> Thank you! Nancy

Bulb-Tip Anemone Newbie Needs Help! 8/14/04 After much anticipating and preparation, I finally bought a bulb-tipped anemone.  However, I am already becoming concerned.   The anemone was purchased from our LFS about five days ago (special order).  I picked it up as soon as the shipment came in, brought it home and acclimated it slowly over 3 hours.  I added the anemone to our tank and our tomato clown took to it only a few minutes later (the clown had never looked happier).   <this was your first mistake bud... all new livestock needs to be quarantined first... ideally for 4 weeks of disease free symptoms. With some notoriously weak shipping animals, like anemones, it is crucial to heed this advice. In this case, the clown can/will stress this weakened anemone who is not being given a chance to acclimate undisturbed (as with QT). Then there are the issues of introducing pests, predators and disease. Please read in our archives at wetwebmedia.com  about the critical need for QT> Later, the anemone moved to a new location over night.  For three days, the anemone looked big (6-8" across) and beautiful.  It seemed very happy and healthy.  Large bulbs had formed and I was extremely pleased.  It deflated slightly at night, but not much (down to 5-6"), and inflated again during the day.  I was having so much fun with my anemone that I fed it for the first time yesterday.  It quickly took the piece of whole cockle (Tropical Marine Centre) from me. <I recommend that you never feed anything larger than finely minced meaty foods... else the anemone may (commonly) regurgitate the food at night and still starve to death in time> But today, I'm seeing a much different anemone.  Though still attached to its original location, the anemone has deflated to almost nothing (1 1/2 - 2" across -the width of its stalk- with very stringy, short tentacles) and has retreated to its hole in my live rock.   <many possibilities at this point> Our clown tries to enter the anemone, but doesn't have much luck.  Nonetheless, it remains loyal and continues to return.   <it is in fact a source of stress... perhaps significant... at this point. Neither anemone or clown need each other> The anemone has been in this condition for most of the day (I was unable to get a decent snapshot inside the hole). I panicked and quickly checked all my parameters.  All normal and the same as when I added the anemone to the tank.  Did a 5g water change anyway (figured it couldn't hurt). <yes... very wise> I've had the tank for about 5 or 6 months now and all other aquatic life are thriving. Is this normal?   <hard to say diagnosing from remote> From what I've read, anemones deflate a little bit after eating. <rather more often inflates> I'm not an anemone expert, but this deflation looks like more than a little bit.  It almost looks sick.  I've also read that these anemones will start looking like this before reproducing.  Is that possible only five days after acclimating to a new tank?   <yes> Any other ideas? <always QT everything wet you bring home... without exception. Keep up with the water changes in the meantime and observe> Your help would be tremendously appreciated.  Thank you! -Brad My tank: 36g with Wet/Dry (suitable for 125g) and Kent Nautilus TE skimmer 1 tomato clown 1 yellow tang 1 blue damsel 1 choco-chip star 10 hermits 5 turbo snails 35-40lbs live rock 130W compact fluorescent Temp=78F Specific Gravity=1.0238 pH=8.3 NO2,NO3,NH3=~0 CaCO3=400ppm <the chocolate chip star is categorically not reef safe and may harass this anemone and/or other desirable invertebrates in time. The hermit crabs to some extent too. Neither are truly "reef-safe". Anthony>

Anemone toxins from a dying anemone. Hi Guys! << Blundell here. >>         I woke up this morning and found my was aquarium milky white. Apparently, during the night, my bubble-tip anemone decided it was a good idea to hang on to my powerhead. It proceeded to get shredded to pieces with only a piece of its foot remaining on the powerhead intake. << Ooh, that's not good. I recommend getting a cover on that powerhead soon. >>I was wondering... besides water changes and extra activated carbon (protein skimmer working as usual), << NO, water change is the best thing. >> is there anything else I should be doing? Thanks, Marc <<  Blundell  >>

Anemone declining 8/9/04 Hi Team, The anemone which I nursed back to health after a trip into the Fluval 204 inlet 6 months ago ( a whole other story) ...seems to be dying off.  It has started noticeably shrinking, and seems to shrivel up much more often than it used to. The water quality in the tank is 0/0/0  NH3-NH4/NO2/NO3, with a reasonable level of Calcium, and Iodine......in fact the only thing I have a problem with is a little green hair algae. <Most aspects of water quality can't be measured.  Despite normal levels of what you can measure, water changes in the amount of 20% or so is recommended.> Tankmates: 2 Perculas (which love the anemone (to death maybe?), a yellow tang, a scarlet hawkfish, and a few red&blue hermits, snails.  I have lots of little shrimp-like amphipods etc. racing about, so I assume the water is OK. <All is probably fine with the tankmates.  The clowns are almost certainly no problem.> I use Actinic and another sunlight style lamp, (to remove the Actinic "blueness"), rather than the lights supplied with the  tank. (both are marked recommended for invertebrates). <It is sounding like you may not have nearly enough light for the anemone.  I am generally not a proponent of outrageous light levels, but anemones really do need bright light.  If you pack enough tubes over the tank, you can keep anemones up high under fluorescents, but halides are generally recommended.> I feed the anemone once a week, when I use a tube to firstly waft some juice from the marine mix (brine shrimp / mussel etc frozen in a cube), which  tempts the anemone to open its mouth up......then I release some of the juice, and a few little chunks of food, near the mouth and around the tentacles, which I sometimes brush lightly until they start to close around it. <Decent size pieces of food (1-3 times the size of a marble) are good, and you can probably do without the brushing.  If the anemone finds the prey palatable, it will hold on.> I thought I was doing everything OK, and I'd be really disappointed if the anemone died because I'd missed something.  Tank is a 240litre, using RO, and Tropic Marin at about 1.020-1.021, at around 80F temperature, pH8.2.  Any clues wizards? best regards Bob <Hmmmm...  Salinity is quite low for invertebrates.  1.025-1.026 is better, more natural.  Also, you do not mention alkalinity, which is just as important as salinity and pH in my opinion.  Do be sure that alk is normal.  Overall, it sounds like your anemone will benefit from increased light and salinity and possibly alkalinity. Best Regards.  Adam>
Anemone declining? 8/10/04
Hi Adam.  I do changes of 10% per week, moving the 10% to the quarantine tank, and the QT water to waste. Seems better than taking too much "new" water into the QT. <A very nice conservation technique!> I also check Ca and Hardness, which I keep up with Ca supplement to recommended levels. <Hardness?  Do you mean dKH, general hardness or total hardness?  Measuring total or general hardness don't indicate alkalinity.  You must use an alkalinity or carbonate hardness test designed for salt water.> Thanks for the advice on lighting..... cheers Bob  P.S.  The thing looked really bad this morning, so I moved it into the QT, where it seems to be picking up a little maybe. <Please be advised that your anemone has all the same requirements for habitat, water movement, feeding and especially light that it has in any other tank!  Best of luck!  Adam>

Lost my anemone on day 1! I have a huge problem okay here it is I bought a RBTA yesterday and I woke up today and couldn't find it I took out all the rocks in the tank and still couldn't find it although I did find the tips to some of the tentacles. I don't have anything in my tank that could kill or eat him and all my filters and powerheads have grids on the intakes. Can you help me find out what happened to him? My lighting is 260 watt of pc lighting in a 55 gallon. I have 4 colonies of zoanthids chili coral, Acropora, feather duster, plate coral, Kenya tree coral, maxima clam, yellow tang, blue damsel, and a six line wrasse. My parameters are as follows Salitiy:1.023 Ph:8.4 Ammonia: less then .25 nitrite:0 nitrate:10 temp:82-84 << Your lighting and parameters seem fine to me.  This makes me wonder if he was poorly acclimated, or the bag he was in got really hot in the car on the way home, or if it was already damaged at the store.  Unfortunate to say the least, but as far as your tank is concerned I don't see a problem.  If you had the anemone for 3 weeks and he slowly shriveled up that would be one thing, but for it to take place in 24 hours leads to other, more probable, causes. >> <<  Blundell  >> <<Blunder all>>

Grr.. Sick BTA <Did these anemones feed regularly in the first month?> However for the past 5 days or so one of them has never inflated beyond half way, and the tentacles have remained all straggly.  It will open a bit more at night, but the tentacles never inflate.  It will not accept food, either.  The second BTA is doing great, eating, growing, etc. <Many possibilities here... not the least of which (no worries) is if it came form a tank with much lower light. Its not an issue of light shock, per se... but under aged lamps, weaker lamps, dirty/dusty lights and canopies/lenses... anemones and corals will swell up and pan for light (giving the appearance of being healthy ironically). Then when they get into better light, they do not need to pan so severely. It is that simple at times.> I did find a small Aiptasia anemone (the bastards) near the BTA.  I'm not sure if it was close enough to have stung it or not, but the possibility is definitely there.  If it was stung, would it be behaving like this? <Nope... they are much tougher than that.> Any way to get it eating and healthy again if so? <Try feeding small amounts of meaty "juice" to the tank at the same time every night. You can condition a feeding response in just a week or two this way. Do it at the end of the day or after the lights go out for zooplankton feeders like this.> My water quality is excellent as of yesterday (0 ammonia, nitrites, less than 5 ppm nitrates, pH 8.3, temp 80F, SG 1.025). <You may want to double check the accuracy of your hydrometer. If this is a plastic job (or handheld refractometer... crap), then I definitely would consider keeping at least one other meter (glass hydrometers are excellent... sparing the need for tabletop refractometers) for periodic calibration.> Lighting is a 150w metal halide and 2 55w PCs (10,000k and actinic).  Water changes are performed at least twice weekly of about 4 gallons <Hmmm... great that you're doing twice weekly water changes but the amount is rather modest/tiny... this will not adequately dilute the undesirables. It would be better to do much larger exchanges.> Also in the tank is a yellow headed jawfish, ~2" maroon clown, a few xenia bunches, a few patches of green star polyps, a Ricordea (partially shadowed by the LR), and a few gorgonians. <Likely not the issue, but star polyp and gorgonians are very noxious... two of the worst (re: allelopathy) > Anyone have any ideas?  The BTA still has a firm grip on the rock it came on, hasn't move more than an inch, but it's looked half dead for about 5 days now.  It's stressing ME out. <Be patient my friend... and above all - DO NOT move this anemone. A surefire way to kill it :( > Anthony

Why is my anemone shriveling up? my LTA is looking very bad and today I read some FAQ on them and the one that fit was the one that said it looked like the LTA was puking its guts out. all the tentacles are withered and the mouth is wide open I will send a picture but the odd thing is that by 10:00pm it was full last night and the last 2 mornings << I would bet it is open at night, looking for food.  >> after shutting the lights off it withered away to near death looking I hope this helps a little the lights are 2 65s  << That doesn't sound like nearly enough light.  I would double that.  Also, try feeding the anemone some krill, especially when it is inflated and big. >> ps this is my 1st tank and it has been 5 days the LTA has been in the tank.<< Good Luck. >> <<  Blundell  >>

Anemone Digestion hi,<Hi Kimberly, MacL here> I have a question...my husband and I just turned our fish only tank into a reef tank. it's a 55 gal with 3 clowns, 2 blue damsels, 1 yellow tang and a choc. chip starfish.. our first two corals were a pulsating flower thing and an anemone that I don't' know the name of. he's got an orange base, and it's tentacles glow green, especially under the moon lighting...our fish store guy told us to squirt a shot of plankton into the tank a couple times a week to feed them both. we have been doing this for about a week...both coral seemed to be doing fine. until yesterday. our anemone started oozing this clear looking bubbly stuff with white chunks in it...formed a long string of it. and this morning when we woke up, the anemone was completely deflated looking, with all its tentacles shriveled up. we are guessing that it is dead, since it has been like that all day long..<Based on what you are saying I think you'll discover that your anemone is just digesting the food its eaten. To be crude its going potty.> it's base looks as if it has been split open and the ooze is still either coming out or just hanging on. is there something that we did wrong..? what happened to our beautiful anemone?? thanks for your help...<Usually when anemones die they start to break down and disintegrate. If you've ever seen that happen you won't forget it.  Looks sort of like an atom bomb hit something and its just turned to mush. Is this what's going on? More like the digestion based on the long stringy stuff coming out from the anemone.>Kimberly and Dennis

BTA not so bubbly My bubble tip anemone used to puff up rather large on a regular basis, now   it is mostly hanging down and stringy.  It used to get this mostly when  the lights were out but not as often as now.  Most of the time it is  small and stringy.  There is also a stingy thin hair like film coming  from it or getting caught on it.  I thought it was dead, but it puffed  up and I fed it (which I do 3 times a week). It hasn't moved, well just  about an inch to the left, but has been happy. 50 gallon bow, 70# live rock,  aqua c remora, canister filter.  192 watt PC Coralife light. I think  is enough light!?! <<Hmmm, doesn't sound like much light to me.  I   would be like to see more, or at least the anemone near the top. >> Now,  I feed it Mysis shrimp or krill, chopped up fine. Water : 0 ammonia, 0  nitrite, low to zero nitrates. Fighting to keep phosphates low, but with  water changes, keeping it low. Alkalinity is high, around 20dKH << Wow,  how did you manage that?  Most people struggle with low dKH.  I would  think that could definitely be a problem.   What is the pH? >> which  in turn is keeping calcium around 200 good water flow. what else, I don't  know, is it just been very sleepy lately. Need anymore  info? mark <<  Adam B.   >>
Re: BTA bummed
I have used 4 types of salt mix, so I don't think its the salt.  The  test kit shows no alkalinity problems right out of the RO/DI filter plus I used   Salifert and red sea test kits, they both show the same.  So I am thinking  RO/DI but how do I check this, the TDS is about 10 which I thought was  great.  I cant reasonably go out an but another $400 RO/DI system.  Is  there another test to perform to check the RO/DI.  << Very good question.  What I would recommend is looking at how long you've had the filter, and how many gallons have gone through it.  It is possible you just need new membranes.  The other thing to do is to get 20 gals of water from a friend, bring it home, mix it up, and then see what levels you test.  Maybe it is your salt? or your buckets? or something else? >> I have had this for  about 9 months now, maybe I will change all the filters but I really don't think  that would do it.   Also, I have a Corallife light 2x96 watt 36" pc fixture (hence 192 watts) 1   actinic 1 20k. << Oh I see, thanks for clearing that up. >> I don't really like the color though, its kind of drab and  purple/blue. maybe metal halide with VHO is the way to go.  How many watts is too  much 400 watts??? << You can't have too many watts.  I don't think 400 watts of halide is overpowering a 50 gal.  I would go with two bulbs like two 250's or two 175's instead of just one 400 watt bulb.  I think you'll much more enjoy two bulbs distributing the light.  That is what I would do. >> anyway, any input about the RO/DI or alkalinity would help. ps the alkalinity out of the tap is also high. << Well that does lend concern for the membranes again.  I'd still get water from somewhere else and try again. >> thanks dude << You're welcome >> mark <<  Adam B.  >>

Bubble Tip Anemone Question I just inherited a tank which contained a BTA.  We have had the tank for about a month and I have noticed the BTA has changed colors and has started to shrivel up.  He just does not look good.  Can you tell me if something is wrong and what do I need to do?  Thanks <Hi, since you haven't told me anything about your system, all I can do to help is refer you to an article about these animals.  Please read over the FAQ's for an understanding of how this system works.  Thanks! Ryan> http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm http://www.wetwebmedia.com/e_quadfaq1.htm

Possibly sick anemone Hello. I was hoping you could help me with my anemone. << I'll do my best. >> I have a small saltwater tank. About 10 gallons. I have a false percula, a watchman goby, 2 feather dusters, 1 live rock, and a long tentacle anemone.... I have  a few  questions to ask...(1) My anemone seems to look healthy one day and almost near death 2 days later. For example, one day it will have it's tentacles extended and will move and have a full appearance. The next day it looks very shrunken and deflated.<< Has it fed on anything during this time.  They often shrimp up while digesting food. >> It's tentacles are small and green and look very unhealthy. Does this mean that it is sick? << Difficult to say.  I believe long term changes in size are a better gauge for health, not short term daily differences.  Something to watch is whether it is larger or smaller one month from now. >> Is my tank too small to keep an anemone? << 10 gallons is small.  However, I have seen some amazing anemones in 10 gallons aquariums.  Those tanks all had frequent water changes, lots of light, and a very low fish load.  All items I would suggest. >> Am I better off donating my LTA to someone with a larger tank? << Time will tell.  If you have the best environment (lots of light, few fish, lots of live rock) then I wouldn't necessarily move him out yet.  Just keep watching for weeks or months.  If things appear to be getting worse, then yes. >>Please advise. <<  Adam Blundell  >>

Bubble tip anemone not doing well just arrived Hello guys- you run an amazing site...i spend all day long reading through it...its the single best alternative to work I've ever discovered... After my 75 gallon has been running for a year, and has been supporting some colonies of soft corals really well, i figure it was time to get an anemone, which was what got me into the hobby in the first place... Here are my tank specs -75 gallon tank, 20 gallon sump, aggressive circulation -skimmer, appropriate filters -water specs- 78degress, 1.024 salinity, ph 8.2, alk high, calcium 600 (a bit high), nitrate 12, nitrite and ammonia 0.  Only water issue is a bit of phosphate that encourages some algae, but it comes right out with Phosguard. -Lighting is 220 watts of powercompacts, 1 out of 4 bulbs are actinic -fish- maroon clown, harlequin trigger, yellow tang, snowflake moray -corals all pretty happy- green star polyps, other polyps, mushrooms, pulsing xenia splitting rapidly Here is the story- -When the clown started "living in" a xenia, i decided to get it an anemone- i read all your stuff, and saw a really nice quadricolor at the LFS...it had been in another customers tank for 3 years, and it had only been in the shop for a few  hours, and was on a piece of liverock and had not been moved...this sucker was HUGE- fully inflated well larger than a softball, and was happily harboring a clown in the store. No tears, happy plump looking anemone, and I liked the fact that it was already on a rock, and that it was already tank acclimated... -Got "her" home, (didn't buy the clownfish b/c I already had one)...did a bucket acclimatization and got her into the tank with no prob.s, and without ever getting her out of the water. put her up close to the top of the tank to give her max light -Over the course of the evening she inflated beautifully, clownfish moved right in (very happy clown), was neat watching the clownfish help her get untangled and unwound.  For the first night she looked good- plump, very tall, fully extended, responsive, wiggling, the whole thing.  Was easily my happiest moment as an aquarium keeper. -Its now 24 hours later, and she is looking all droopy over the side of her rock, she is maybe 75% deflated, her mouth is open about .5", and she seems to be shoving a white blob out of her mouth...I'm worried she's doing the dreaded one time only "inside out anemone" trick.  I tried to feed her but i don't think she took anything. -She hasn't moved (walked) at all, but she is not looking so good...I'm feeling almost sick I'm so worried... -I'm not sure what to do? My water is fine, all the other critters are happy, nobody but the clown is bugging her, and she is plenty of good light about 8" from the surface.   -Is she a) dying b) just pooping out her most recent meal? (the fish store fed her) c) just being annoyed at 2 moves in 2 days, and will pep up again? -What should I do?  move her? try to prop her up with smooth rocks so she droops less?  << I wouldn't move "her" again. No use adding more stress, and I don't see much good coming from another move. >> -Is she doomed? or is this just normal anemone defecation, or normal anemone adaptation to new water?  << She isn't doomed. It is amazing how well anemones will come back from a bad cycle. However, they come back when they are provided with a good environment.  So, the first thing that comes to my mind is to compare the lighting in your tank, to the lighting in the store.  See what they are using, and how that compares.  Otherwise, I would wait a few days before really feeling any sense of worry. >> Thanks for any support or help you can give... I've already read all your articles, there were great... Noah << Adam Blundell >>

BTA behavior 5/28/04 I was wondering it you could help me what is happening in my fish tank. The anemone I purchased a week ago wandered around for a couple of days and perched itself on the glass beside my protein skimmer near the surface. I am feeding it shrimp pellets but I haven't been able to tell whether or not it is eating. <you have much to learn about anemones my friend... I have immediate concerns about the lighting (from the anemone loving around), the food being fed... and if (hopefully not) you have other corals or anemones in this tank (bad to mix). Please take the time to go through our extensive archives on this subject at wetwebmedia.com > Lately it has been deflated most of the day and night. I have 2 Percula Clowns that loved to play in it but because it is deflated they seem sad. It is on the glass so it is not in a very well lit area. I have read that when it digests its food that it will shrink for a couple of days. <hmmm... a matter of hours. And some swell instead. Days would be a concern> It has started to slide down the glass and I am not sure weather something is wrong or it is migrating. I also think that it might be splitting. <this may not be the case> I have included Photos of it. <no pics attached> right now it looks like it is sliding down the glass deflated. Please tell me what is happening. Thank You, Brad Prince <best regards, Anthony>

Sick Anemone Dear WetWebMedia, <Hello, Ryan here> can you please tell me why has my anemone turned green and why my clownfish eating it. Thanks a bunch Michael Allan Atkins P.S. Can you please reply as soon as possible. <Hi Mike. I'd love to help, but I really can't without any help from you. I need specific details: Water Quality Test Results, new additions, equipment changes? At any rate, it sure sounds like you should setup a quarantine tank for the clown, so that your anemone may have it's best chance at recovery. Please reply soon so that we can help!> 

-Bleaching BTA's- Hi all, <Hellooo, Kevin here> I have a major problem. My 1 big rose BTA has split into 3 BTAs <Sweet!> and they are getting bleached in my 60 litre tank. <Not so sweet> They can't feed well because of the torn up mouths but has healed up quite nicely over the few weeks. 2 of them has moved into the top my tank into a dark corner and 1 has settled nicely onto a rock with partial lighting. How do I feed them? <I suppose you'll have to wait until their mouths have healed enough to handle food.> Will DT's live phyto plankton help? <Not directly, but it will help other critters in the tank which could be eaten by the anemone.> they can't eat the Mysis shrimps that I have cos their stingers don't work and their mouths are still not quite up to swallowing. Only their tips are a faint pink with most parts of their tentacles being whitish green....Not a good sign I suppose. <Not very good at all, but in a healthy tank they should recover. I'm sure tearing yourself into three parts is quite stressful, and I'm sure i would bleach as well should that happen to me!> Is there anything I can do to restore their colour to the rich rose and also, is there a way to feed them? <You can't force feed them, so you'll just have to keep trying every couple of days until they start taking food again.> Will strong lighting help? <No, not if they're bleached, they won't be able to handle large amounts of light. Given some time, if the tank is in otherwise good shape, i would suspect that the anemones will begin feeding once again and regain their zoo., Good luck! -Kevin> Cheers, Ben Chua (Singapore)
-Bleached BTA clones-
Hi Kevin.. Thanks for the information. I shorten the lighting time to about 8 hrs a day ... <I would keep the photoperiod the same, no use getting all the other critters out of their usual day-night cycle.> However I think I am jeopardizing my clams but I think those clams should be all right for awhile. <I'm sure nothing negative will happen to your clams, but I'm sure the sun rising and setting at strange times is rather upsetting to them at first :) > Just another few questions. I think they healed up pretty well but they are still bleached. I managed to feed them mashed up prawns and they seem to be really hungry. However, roughly just how long will they be able to regain their zooxanthellae and be a normal rose BTA again? <Time will tell, no definitive answer here. I'm sure they'll be fine in the interim. Just keep on feeding!> They have been like this for about nearly a month now... Do you need pictures to see how badly they are bleached? <Would be interesting, but regardless they should (keyword: should) regain their proper coloration and symbiotic buddies in due time. BTA's are as hardy as they come, just be patient. Let us know what happens! -Kevin> 

Banged-Up BTA? (Anemone With Whitish Streaks) Greetings Crew! <Hi there! Scott F. with you today!> First let me start by saying how much I enjoy the new Conscientious Aquarist Online Magazine.  A great addition to an already incredible site! <Glad to hear that you like it! Adam and I really want to make it better and better. This is just the beginning! We're lucky to have some great people here to help us make it all happen! Look for next issue in July, and monthly starting next year!> Now for my question.  I just got a rose BTA for my minireef.  I have been on the lookout for a BTA for quite a while and just none came around that looked truly healthy for me....until this one.  I fell in love with it as soon as I saw it!  I examined it closely in the store and being satisfied, brought it home.  It immediately wandered in my tank for a day and has been in the same spot for several days and looking happy. <A good sign> I noticed several white streaks around it's "mouth" (don't know what it should be called) <yeah- "mouth" is just fine!> that I did not notice when I bought it.  They have not changed in the last few days and it is still in the same spot, looking good and readily eating the small tidbits of food that I feed it.  I know that white on most any anemone is bad and I am concerned.  Attached is a pic.  Is this anything to worry about or is just the natural coloration of this specimen?   <Well, to me- this specimen looks otherwise healthy. If you are not noticing necrotic areas, or obvious physical traumas to the animal, then you are probably okay. Sometimes these streaks are simply areas where the animal came into contact with something in the immediate environment (i.e.; a rock, etc.), and are analogous to a scar on a human. it may simply be coloration, too. Do keep an eye on the animal. However, if it appears otherwise healthy, reacts to stimuli, and feeds regularly, I wouldn't be overly concerned.> Thanks again for all your help and keep up the incredible work.  You guys (and gals) don't get nearly enough credit for all your hard work. Ray <Ya know what, Ray? just knowing that we're helping others enjoy the hobby that we all love so much is pretty darn cool! keep sharing with others and growing in the hobby yourself! Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Ill anemone... another ingredient for coral soup 4/22/04 Hi There <howdy> I got a small BTA 3 weeks ago and over the last week it is looking real ragged. <please do know and practice necessary QT for all new livestock (snails, corals, fishes, anemones... everything) to improve rates of survival and reduce the introduction of parasites, pests and diseases> I have a 90 gal with a small hammer coral, growing Galaxea, several small colonies of zoanthids. I have read a lot on the anemone problems and have come to the conclusion that it could be anything that is affecting my anemone. <well.. the lack of QT and the unnatural placement of this motile cnidarian in a tank full of sessile ones were the first two mistakes. Big ones at that> I have learned that having an anemone in a tank of corals isn't the best thing. <correct my friend> I got it mostly for my clown who absolutely loves the anemone. <it is a most beautiful symbiosis to observe... but do know that the clown does not need it. Many clowns (most in some areas) live entirely without host anemones. And anemones in captivity suffer a terrible rate of mortality for not being handled properly> I have 2-250 watt 10000k and 1 150 watt 20000k. <very nice> I am an anal water quality watcher and test often. Nitrate nitrite and ammonia are zero. <do allow some nitrate (5ppm or so) to linger to feed corals/anemones> Calcium is low, about 300. ph is 8.0-8.3 night day. <and the pH is flat too. Do address these issues with large water changes to bring you back to par and then carry on with Kalkwasser supplementation IMO> The anemone has a very rigid look to it like a flat plate with its tentacles being shriveled. I have tried to feed it and it weakly attempts to bring in the shrimp but the clown removes the food. I don't think it is food or light. <agreed... perhaps just a hard acclimation. More time is needed> My real question is how long do I give the anemone before I remove it so it doesn't die and foul my tank. <you see now my friend why this observation period should be conducted in a QT tank. You are in a pickle right now between not wanting to sacrifice the anemone prematurely, and not wanting to wipe out a tank. Please do not underestimate the need for QT> Also, what corals will a clown take to that aren't as tough to keep?? <most all corals will suffer from hosting a clown in time. To satisfy your need to see this, do consider setting up the anemone (alone with the clown) in an inline refugium at the very least, if not in a separate and dedicated tank altogether> My clown seems much happier with the anemone. <ahhh...no. All kidding aside, the notion is charming. But not true. Statistically, more clowns are found without anemones and the family manages to survive and persevere in time <G>> It gives him a break from my psycho Kole tang who punishes Nemo from time to time <lace the tangs Nori with some Xanax and all will be fine. Kind regards, Anthony, <<Who never dived in his life. After diving thousands of times over forty plus years in the tropics I have NEVER observed a clownfish that was NOT in association w/ a symbiotic Anemone. What? RMF>>

Deadly Transgressions - Death of an Anemone, part Deux  >Thank you for the advice!  >>Very welcome, Justin.  >It's been about 24 hours since my anemone died, and the water changes saved the rest of the fish and corals.  >>Thus the mantra, "When in doubt, Do a Water Change!"  >I was worried about my Nemo (Ocellaris Clown) being homeless, and apparently so was he. Now that the anemone is gone, he has taken to my Alveopora, flowerpot coral.  >They have certainly been known to host stranger things.  >Is this a healthy or acceptable relationship?  >>As long as the coral doesn't object, sure. One thing, does the clown always have that "shedding skin" look on him? If so, it may be no big deal, and I know you didn't ask, but when I see a fish looking like that (two pix now) to me it's an indicator of a problem. Just curious how he's doing.  >If not, what can I do to keep one or both of the animals from being harmed?  >>Not much unless you remove one or the other (physical separation). Nice looking Alveopora, though.  >Thanks, Justin  >>Glad to be of help. Marina

Sebae anemone upside down 3/28/04 First I would like to thank all of you for your great site and all the helpful info. <thanks kindly... please do tell friends/fellow hobbyists about us> I have a Sebae Anemone that I have acclimated to my system and it seems to be doing ok.  It is still white from it's bleaching, but when I put him in I set him right side up (pedal foot down) the next day he was upside down (tentacles in the substrate). I flipped him over and he stayed that way for several days and got up one morning to find him upside down again.   <this is often caused by water flow not to their liking. Do experiment> He seems to be doing topsy turvey every few days but eats fine when I feed him with a turkey baster.  Though some time it seems as though nothing sticks to its tentacles and my cleaner shrimp climbs across them and picks food out as well.  Is this something of the norm or not? <please do keep trying to feed and offer different foods (very fine diced). Also consider adding Cyclops-eeze (frozen if possible... freeze-dried if not). Anthony>

BTA Disaster Good Morning, <morning> Yesterday I brought home a small bubble tip anemone for our small reef tank (10 gallon nano that is dedicated to a pair of Ocellaris).   <I'm interested to know how you have elected to light this anemone in such a small tank> This morning all we have are pieces of BTA in our Skilter.   <it a larger aquarium (hoping your have one to move some fragments to) the pieces would have a better chance of survival. BTA can be and have been propagated by simple fragmentation. Daniel Knop has an article on this very such mistake in an article this year in the new Coral magazine - do check it out (the mag subscription and the article)> Obviously, I did not shield the Skilter intake effectively! <a small foam block from an AquaClear power filter works nicely here (cut a slit and slide onto the intake of the filter (can be rinsed and reused easily/often)> We have 3 pieces that we've pulled out of the Skilter and we are holding them in a separate container.  My question is what should I do with these pieces?   <maintain very good water flow and water quality... some may survive indeed> They are responsive to a light and the largest piece appears to want to suction down to the bottom of the container.  Is there any way to nurse one or more of these pieces back to health?  Thank you. Cindy <after the heal over... give them jut a few weeks and then begin feeding very small pieces of food (no brine shrimp... but nothing larger that it (1/4") in size by comparison... Mysid shrimp and Pacifica plankton plus Cyclops-eeze would be great here. Also, please be sure to address the lighting issue properly. Heavy daylight (6500k to 10k K color... no blue is needed, but can be added if you like)... and at least 5 watts of daylight (not including blue actinic) minimum here. Best of luck. Anthony>
BTA disaster II 3/28/04
Thanks for the quick reply!  I will hunt down that article and we will definitely try to save these pieces.  I inherited this tank 7 months ago with the Ocellaris pair and a flat/rock anemone from a co-worker (they didn't understand that the rock anemone was not a suitable host for the clownfish).  Between the two of us this tank has been up and running for just over two years, but I did recently (4 months ago) upgrade the lighting to prepare for getting a BTA. I've got 80 watts of power compact light on the tank (Custom SeaLife fixture - 40W of 10,000K, 40W Ultra Actinic and moonlight).   <nice color scheme...but only the 40 watt 10k K is doing much for the anemone and as it stands has too much blue in it. May be a moot point here as we are not trying to get optimal growth of the BTA in such a small tank. It will outgrow the aquarium sooner rather than later as it is> I also have two sources of water movement - the Skilter that is used solely for carbon filtration and an Aquarium System's hang-on-the-tank protein skimmer that we run continually for movement and turn air flow on for skimming once a week, 24 hours at a time.   <do run the skimmer full time please (for water quality and so as not to cause stressful fluctuations from the on/off aeration that affects dissolved oxygen levels. Also, observe if you are getting accumulated detritus in areas that indicates a need for better water flow> I don't use any supplements on this small tank, we've found a weekly 20% water change is all that is needed for maintaining good water quality.   <agreed... and feeding several times weekly in small amounts> I could put the frags in my main 72 gallon tank, but I'm paranoid about putting anything into that tank that could move around and sting my corals, <agreed> and our quarantine doesn't have strong enough lighting, so I'll try my best with them in the nano.  Thanks again for you help. Cindy <kindly, Anthony>  

Rose Anemone 3/28/04 I currently have a 150 gallon set up wet dry, CPR backpack skimmer, UV light, two power heads  on opposite ends of the tank one high one low, heater in the wet dry box and one in tank. The tank also contains lots of live rock mixed with lace rock. I have 1 percula clown,1 clarkii clown, 1 powder brown tang, 1 lawnmower blenny, 2 scooter blenny's, 4 damsels, and a cleaning crew. But I recently received a rose anemone {1 week} it attached quickly to a rock in very lit place middle of the tank. The Clarkii clown took to it immediately. Feeding it and sleeping in it, however he would be rather aggressive in its play. Two days ago I found the rose on the floor of the tank shriveled up like a disk and very hard. I put it back in the same spot it was. It opened and ate for me but then returned to the bottom. This time it had formed a donut shape with a hole in the middle. I returned it again and it began to look good. The next day it was climbing on the glass and through out the day started slimming its way down the glass to the bottom. I returned it and it was fine. Today I found it with half full tentacles and a ghostly puffing of the mouth. When I fed it there was what looked to be a small tentacle next to it that was expanding and deflating. Could you tell me what might be happening? <not necessarily (or even likely) a response to light... perhaps irritation by the clownfish not giving it a chance to settle in... and even more likely not favoring the water flow (generally not enough). Still do consider if your lights are bright enough: 5 watts per gallon and focus on daylight color (6500-8,000 K). There is also an extraordinary amount of information in our wetwebmedia.com archives if you will kindly take the time to read/browse yourself. Enjoy the journey! Anthony> Testing the water everything is good, temp is 80 and I have lights on 10 hours. The lights are ice berg ballast (2) and 2 artic white VHO (2) artic blue. 

Cocoons and anemone pest? I have been searching your site for a good answer and have asked around, now I need the pros advice. On my live rock, I have what appear to be many small, white "cocoons", some have opened...now my long tentacled anemone is having what appear to be wounds, like if a triggerfish was biting. I don't have any idea what the cocoons might be...if the culprit happens to be bristleworms, then they have to go before they make my anemone look like a leopard. Thanks for any info! Ian <The "cocoons" may well be some type of tubiculous (tube-dwelling) polychaete worm, but I very much doubt that they are directly or indirectly involved in your anemone's health issue. Time to "go back" to basics, have you read through the many anemone articles, FAQs archives on WetWebMedia... test your water, gain an understanding of what is involved in their husbandry. Bob Fenner>

Bleached Rose <Hello, Ryan with you> Hi, I just bought a bleached out Rose that I am attempting to bring back to health. Anyway, I have some questions--if you don't mind: <No problem> 1. What can I do to help it recover? Any reef supplements? Right now I am just hand feeding it. <Lots of water changes, high water quality.  I would feed Cyclops-eeze, clams, shrimp, formula 1.> 2. I saw one a FAW re: propagation that you have a slide show that demonstrates how to properly propagate BTA's, is there any chance I can have it emailed to me? <I don't have the access to that file...sorry.> 3. I placed my Rose BTA in the tank, and immediately my Maroon Goldbar Clown took to him. Would it be imperative that I remove the clownfish, or is it OK as long as the anemone is "opening-up". <This can be overly stressful to the animal, and is not recommended.  I would actually remove the anemone to a quarantine, as it sounds like it may or may not make it.  Not worth the chance of melting down in your system in my opinion.> 4. The "open-mouth" look of an unhealthy anemone; is that the result of it being "hungry"? <It's probably expelling it's symbiotic algae, thus resulting in the "bleached" look.  If it's eating the food you give it, that's a good sign.  Good luck, Ryan> Thanks very much! I really love the site, there are tons and tons of useful information in the FAQ. I've found a new favorite reef site :) <Enjoy, learn lots!> Travis

Rose BT anemone splitting I think! Need help Hi all, <howdy> I got a rose which was in my tank abt 2 weeks. Recently there's a hole from its mouth to the base. I think it is splitting! <quite possible/common> I've got 2 friendly maroon clowns in the tank that's trying to nestle into the anemone! Should I remove those 2 maroons and let the BTA split naturally or will they help the splitting process ? <they are irritating to the process in aquaria... and were frankly put in too soon with the anemone only 2 weeks established. Somewhat to very stressful> The smaller maroon seems to be drilling into the BTA! <yes... a problem> I need help. Any suggestion will be greatly appreciated! Cheers, Ben - Singapore <Ben... please do take the time to read through the bounty of information we have on this topic in our archives. There is an article on them splitting and many more FAQs. Do a keyword search in the google search tool at the bottom of the wetwebmedia.com home page. Also, search similarly on the big message boards. I have at least 3 large threads over there myself on this topic. Best of luck! Anthony>

Anemone In Peril? Hi! <Hi there! Scott F. here today> I have included a picture which came out at least clear enough for you guys to see our problem. We've had out BTA for about 5 weeks now and just a few days ago we've noticed that half of it's tentacles are gone! On one side, it has normal green bulb tipped tentacles and the other side for some reason just started shriveling up and now are gone! We can't seem to find anyone who has had this problem. The entire 5 weeks we've had the BTA, we also had a Maroon Clownfish that has "occupied" it for lack of a better word. Here are all the things we have in the tank: (first of all it's a 55 gallon tank with a pro wet/dry filer) 3 Bumble Bee snails, 2 tiny blue algae hermit crabs, 1 cleaner shrimp, 1 Peppermint Shrimp, 1 grazer snail, one Kenyan Tree, one Frogspawn, one mushroom, one Yellow Tang, one Powder Blue Tang, one Diamond Watchman, one 4 Striped Damsel, one Yellow/Purple Chromis, 1 Maroon Clown Fish, 1 Coral Beauty and 1 starfish. <Wow! That's quite a load in a 55 gallon! Do consider larger quarters for all in the very near future!> Our lights are one 65 watt daylight bulb and one 65 watt blue light bulb that stand approx. 3 inches from the top of the tank. The BTA has stayed in the same place for the past 3 weeks. Any idea what would cause the BTA to just lose tentacles? Vince Urban <Well, Vince, I wonder if the anemone "lost" the tentacles, or if they are merely retracted? Regardless, I'd start by running some tests for basic water quality parameters, such as ammonia, nitrite, pH, alkalinity, etc. Detectible ammonia or nitrite can, of course, be problematic, as can high levels of nitrate. The other possibility is lighting. I don't think that your lighting is intense enough for long-term success with the anemone. Much brighter light is required for success (Such as metal halide). The other thought is that you need to observe carefully to see of someone is harassing the anemone. Finally, the other thought is that you may need to provide more food the animal, as they do like to eat. Do check out all of these possibilities, and take appropriate action. Regards, Scott F.>

Anemone Shock Hi, <Hello! Ryan with you> i have recently acquired a new carpet anemone despite the fact that i already have a Bubbletip. i noticed that my Bubbletip has lost its ability to feed.. it is still able to hold food in its tentacles but unable to ingest it. could it be the chemical warfare going on? <Almost certainly a stress response.  You can try increasing skimming and water changes to counteract> if i remove the carpet, how am i supposed to "revive" the Bubbletip? <Water change, fresh foods, perhaps some Cyclop-eeze?  Be sure to conduct a water test so that you know where the stresses are coming from.> regards, Alvin  <<Allelopathy. B>>

Anemone In Distress? Hi <Hi there! Scott F. here today> Have recently purchased a Condylactis anemone. Brought it home, and it was doing well for about a week.  Now his tentacles seem to shrivel up.  Why does it do this?  It seems to do this to all areas of itself so I am not sure if something is wrong or not. I took a sample of my water to a fish store and everything checked out.  Please help.  Thanks <Well, there are many factors that affect anemone health. Water chemistry parameters are just part of the equation. Look into nutrition, etc. as well. Lighting is another very important factor, perhaps the single most important factor. Light intensity, specifically. Re-asses your environmental parameters, and adjust as needed. We have lots of good information here on the WWM site! Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Bleaching Anemone hi again <Morning, Ryan with you> i have added an anemone to my tank this time, and it has been about a month. i have also started to add corals about 2 weeks ago. I have started adding supplements such as strontium, iodine, and calcium for the corals. but the anemone has started to fade in colour, it was a reddy browny colour , but is now a light pinky colour. the lights are only 6 months old, and it is getting live brine shrimp and grated prawn for the gobies. what can i do about the colour for the anemone. <You anemone is fading in color because the algae that lives in it's tissues are dying.  This happens because of insufficienct light and/or lack of proper nutrients.  I'd suggest you read up on these animals before attempting to care for one: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/anemonelightngfaqs.htm.  Good luck, Ryan> thanks
Bleaching Anemone Cont'd
hello again. <Hi, Ryan back with you> i didn't fully understand the info on the bleaching anemones. I am not sure if the light is ok. <It's not enough> people at the aquarium say its the food. they also say the lights on too long. I have got 2 white aquarium lights and one actinic blue light over the tank, and the lights are on for 9 hours a day. they are at a depth of about 10 inches. <I'm truly sorry that you're in this cycle.  The LFS you're supporting is not doing a good job educating their customers about the highly sensitive lives in your hands.  This setup will kill the anemone slowly over time, and I sense from your emails that you want to do the best thing.  The best thing is to call a reputable saltwater shop, and let them know that you have an anemone that you don't have the capacity to care for.  Anemones require either metal halide or another high wattage marine lighting system.  To keep this animal alive, you're looking at hundreds of dollars in equipment alone.>  they get fed live brine shrimp and grated prawn. i add iodine, strontium, calcium, and all the levels are ok, as well as ammonia and that sort of stuff. <I understand, but please stick to animals that don't rely on photosynthesis for life.> Can you please make some suggestion, should i have 2 blue lights and one white. Should the lights be on for longer or shorter. And how about food? <Food should include chopped clams, shrimp, Cyclops-eeze, marine snow. Lights should be on a 12 hour on/off rotation.  Good luck, please get this animal to someone with a tank ready for this type of animal.  Thanks, Ryan>

Arrow Crab compatibility & anemone health 3/2/04 Greetings!  Once again I come to you seeking your seemingly infinite wisdom!<Semi-consciousness is more like it!> I feel like I am drowning in the sea of conflicting information and I am hoping you can help sort things out.  I have an arrow crab (Stenorhynchus seticornis) in my tank and I am wondering if it should remain there.  I have had no problems with it so far and the corner that he hangs out in (below a powerhead) is one of the cleanest in the tank.  He seems happy to snatch up some of the scraps drawn there that the fish miss and cleaning the algae that grows.  I  have read in some sources and told by the LFS that he should not harm any of the other tankmates as long as he has enough food--not a problem.  However, I have read from other sources that he will eat smaller fish and crabs if the opportunity arises.  ??????  How small is small? <The question is really how small and how slow.  All crabs are opportunistic omnivores at best, some are vicious predators.  Arrow crabs will prey on worms and other small animals, but are very likely to catch any but the smallest, slowest fish (very small gobies for example) or those that are sick.> Tank background:  55gal with 50#LR and about 15#Tufa base, live sand, overflow with skimmer at approx 150gph, 550gph powerhead, 170gph powerhead, whisper 3 filter, 220W PC lights (2-10,000K, 2-actinic).  I am building it up to be a primary fish tank with some coral accenting the fish (semi-reef you might call it).  Ammonia, nitrites, nitrates all zero, pH 8.3, SG 1.023 (slowly raising it to 1.024), dKH 10.  Using RO/DI water with 10% changes weekly. <All sounds good.> Current inhabitants:  3 perculas, yellowtail damsel, yellow tang, coral beauty, Firefish goby and a small neon goby (about 1").  The tank is also complete with the cleanup crew of snails, hermits, serpent star, orange star (more decoration than cleanup) and a peppermint shrimp.  I also now have some anthelia polyps growing like mad (started with 3, now have almost 20 small polyps around them in last 10 days), and have added a green star polyp coral that seems to be doing fine.  I also have a sebae anemone that, unfortunately, arrived pure white (more on that in a sec).   <A 55gal will quickly become tight quarters for a yellow tang, and keep an eye on that star for any carnivorous activity.  You may want to feed a peanut size piece of meaty food to the star every couple of days to keep it sated.> So, will any of my inhabitants find their way to my arrow crabs plate?  The neon goby hangs out near the top of the tank on the other side (hangs out on the magnetic cleaner) and the damsel also is on the opposite side as well.  Crabs and snails go where they please.  Never seen the arrow on the other side of the tank. <The neon goby could be at risk if it wanders too close.  Snails may be at risk from both the arrow crab and hermits.  It is my policy to exclude ALL crabs from my reef tanks for their potentially destructive behavior and minimal benefit.> Now for the anemone.  Unfortunately, I learned about a day too late that they do not come in white.  It is still alive and I am attempting to nurse it back to health.  I ordered it from an online company that claims it is "the largest and most responsible supplier of aquatic life in the country" and who state that their "aquatic team takes extraordinary measures to ensure that all aquatic life receives the best possible care until they arrive safely to your home".  Well, it arrived pure white with the only color being some yellow splotches on the bottom of its base.  It has eaten a few small pieces of Formula one and has moved to a different spot and has been there for 2 days now.  It withdraws quickly when touched.  It also has been ejecting black stuff from its mouth that look like coffee grounds (poop?).   It has been 5 days now since I got it and no real change in condition.  Is there any hope for it?   Unfortunately being a medical student most of my time is spent reading about things like myasthenia gravis and periventricular leucomalacia rather than anemone health. <There are several anemones sold as "sebae anemones".  Some are more hardy than others.  My advice is to continue what you are doing.  Feed occasionally and allow it to roam until it finds a spot it likes.  It is very unlikely to recover, but it may.  The material it expelled is excrement.  Your best investment as someone on a budget (time and financial) is a couple of good books.  Bob Fenner's "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist", Anthony Calfo and Bob Fenner's "Natural Marine Aquarium" series (only vol 1 currently available.) and Delbeek and Sprung's "The Reef Aquarium" Vol 1&2 and Scott Michael's "Reef Fishes" pocket guide are all outstanding and will cost a fraction of what they will save you in livestock losses.> Anyway, my lesson has been learned....start my research at WWM! <This is an excellent place to start!  Please do make the most of the resource.>  Thanks again for all the help.  Hope to hear from you soon! -Ray <Glad to help!  Adam>

Anemone Euthanasia? 2/27/04 Greetings. <howdy> Sad to report that my Sebae anemone is no more.  This morning I found him lying on his side and his base had split open and his guts were spilling out onto my sand bed.  I know that this cannot be good for the rest of my minireef inhabitants so I promptly removed him.  Since my QT tank is currently occupied by a healthy polyp coral--and I did not want to hurt it--I was forced to discard the anemone.  Was this correct to do or did I just kill a creature that still had a chance?   <hmm...hard to say, but I must admit that it certainly did have a chance. Anemones have so little dense tissue that if/when they die they wipe out very quickly (hours). Yet they are also highly regenerative (we propagate many anemones by cutting them in half with a razor blade. As such, if your anemone was not a rotting pile of goo... it was still alive> I have had him for a few weeks and he arrived bleached but was eating Formula one every-other day.  After QT of 2 weeks, I moved him to my main tank where there was better lighting in hopes to restore him to full health.  All my tank parameters are still optimal.   <understood... but this specimen was doomed to have challenges regardless for being kept unnaturally (for anemones) in a tank with corals. Please do consider that most anemones need a biotope or species tank to survive optimally> Either way, I have learned my lesson that white anemones, while pretty, are not good. <all good my friend> Thanks again for all your help.  You guys (and gals) rock! -Ray Springfield, IL <best of luck to you. Anthony>

Struggling Anemone I have a green BTA that is not looking very healthy. About a month ago it released a very little version of itself onto my substrate. <Very cool!> Well, since then, it has relocated itself to the other side of my tank. Well, now it is looking very sickly. The tentacles on it are pretty much clear with only a hint of green to them. It does not open up very much at all anymore. The anemone is the host to a Maroon Clownfish and the fish can not get the anemone to open. I have been trying to add Coral Vital, MarineSnow plankton and hand feeding it some Formula 1 frozen food. I also add the weekly dosage of the various elements that are needed. My system is a 55G tank using 4 x 55W Power Compact lights(2 10K and 2 Actinic). I have testing my water and everything is fine from what I see. My Ph is 8.4, specific gravity 1.024, water temp 78-80, Ammonia 0, Nitrate 0 and Nitrite 0. I can not figure out how to bring this anemone back around. Please help as it was a beautiful 4" Green BTA. Thank you. <Well, it's hard to say exactly what is wrong with the animal. The water conditions that you list seem fine. Keep up what you are doing. I suppose that in the absence of other symptoms or poor water quality indicators, all that you can do is continue to supply good water conditions. You might want to throw in an extra water change- sometimes, a water change can really perk up otherwise struggling animals. Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Anemone health, environment Hi I had a question about two anemones I have. I own a 75 gallon tank, saltwater, all that's in it are some live rock, one maroon clown fish, and two anemones. I have had the anemones for about 4 months and they look a lot smaller than when I bought them. One of them was eating shrimp just fine but the other one I have never been able to feed shrimp all that well, it seems to be too much for it to hold on to no matter how small I make it. Now the one who was eating well isn't, they both look unhealthy, and also one of them has moved at least 4 times while the other has been in the same rock since I bought him.                               <I'm not really sure what your question is; However, I'll try to comment on the overall situation. You mentioned that your anemones have gotten smaller over time. This makes me think that they're not getting enough nutrients and therefore are losing body mass. You also mentioned that one of your anemones has moved over four times around your aquarium within the past 4 months. Most likely the anemone would have found a suitable location by now which leads me to think that something in your aquarium, such as lighting, current, or water chemistry, is causing the anemone to move. It would help to know the species of the anemones in your aquarium - I can't really say too much without knowing the species of your anemone. I would appreciate knowing your lighting and filtration of your aquarium, as well as all of your current. I can't really give you an exact answer without knowing those descriptions. Take Care, Graham.>

Anemone potential problems? Thank you for your quick response.  Well I answered my own question with the missing perc.  He was inside one of the rocks the whole time and eventually came floating out. :(  We did purchase the buffer you recommended we've been using it for 4 days and the ph is now a 7.8 dropping to a 7.6 in the morning after the lights first come on.  Is it safe to keep adding the buffer or will that cause other problems in the tank?   <Yes, continue using it. You may want to add slightly more buffer to the aquarium and hopefully raise the pH slightly more than you are now. It's important not to overdose on any of the products, especially since pH swings can often be fatal so some of the more sensitive invertebrates. I recommend adding the buffer in the morning, when the pH is lowest. I would also keep a close eye on the pH when dosing the product. It's extremely important to test for everything you dose.> Now for the anemones, since I last e-mailed you, the Condy hasn't fully inflated, it is partially inflated, but not like it should be, it's tentacles are rather dark, which I guess is normal when it's not fully opened up.  The BTA seems rather healthy, and moves around all the time.  I'm still unsure as to whether I should bring back the Condy. What would you recommend? <It would be interesting to point out that a healthy anemone is not one that moves around the aquarium. An anemone that constantly moves means that it's searching for an environment which fits its need properly. If it doesn't such an environment, it will continue moving until it eventually dies. If it does not eventually find a spot (The E. quadricolor usually prefers wedging its foot between the rocks and having only its oral disc exposed), I would recommend returning it. Anemones generally do not have a high survival rate in captivity and should be left for the more experienced aquarists.> Chances are if I lose both anemones, we will not purchase another, after all of the research I have done, I have earned a whole new respect for them and I would rather they stay in the wild where they are guaranteed to live.   I have heard that the Percs can host with something else, is this true?   <Yes. Clownfish will often host with many other invertebrates, not only anemones. I've actually seen some clownfish host in zoanthids, tridacnid clams, xenia, and empty shells! If you want something for your clowns to host in, I would recommend a Toadstool leather (Sarcophyton sp.) for your clownfish. These will make perfect hosts for the clownfish, and often will resemble an Anemone. Many other types of leathers including the Devils Hand (Lobophytum sp.), Spaghetti Leather (Sinularia flexilis) and Finger Leather (Sinularia sp.) will also work fine. Other good hosts include the Colt coral (Cladiella sp., or, Alcyonium sp.), Kenya Tree (Capnella sp.-should be added to a mature aquarium), Alveopora (Alveopora sp.), Torch Coral (Euphyllia glabrescens), Hammer Coral (Euphyllia ancora), Bubble Coral (Plerogyra sp.), Green Star Polyps (Pachyclavularia sp.), Xenia (Xenia sp.?), Frogspawn (Euphyllia sp.), etc. There were many I never mentioned, only due to the care level required for them, and the difficulty of keeping them successfully alive. Some of these include the Flowerpot (Goniopora sp.), Plate Coral (Heliofungia Actiniformis), and Elegance (Catalaphyllia sp.) to name a few.> One more thing, I would really like to get another clown, but don't know if it is a good idea.  We only have one fish in the tank now, if we do get another clown, what are the chances of them pairing up, and is there a certain fish I should look for perhaps a bigger or smaller fish?  The bigger of a pair is usually the female correct?   <Buy another clownfish only if you're willing to take a risk that they won't pair up. If you do decide to buy another clownfish, make sure you buy the biggest percula specimen available. Percula clownfish aren't extremely aggressive which is why I'm not too worried about adding another clown to the aquarium, although there is always going to be some risk involved.> Although I know they can change their sex. Oh what to do Oh what to do?  Thank you again for any advice you can give.  This is wonderful being able to ask somebody questions who actually knows what their talking about and not just trying to sell you something.  It's hard finding somebody you can trust.  You guys rock!! <Thank you very much for those great comments! I hope this helps and take care, Graham.> -Kim

Anemone Keeping Ethics... I have a small library of books on anemones which range in advice from "most anemones starve to death" to "feed large chunks of shrimp every other day". <Conflicting information? In our hobby? Nah! LOL. Glad to hear that you are researching, though. Take all advice-even mine, with a grain of salt and a dose of skepticism..> I'm confused and pretty disappointed to learn that if I were to follow all the advice I've read in books, I'd probably kill many anemones, something I'm unwilling to do. <Well, not necessarily. If the tank is configured to meet their requirements, and proper environmental conditions are achieved, success is indeed possible with these animals.> So I am on my third and final anemone, if this one dies, I will give up. Now, the question, what type of substrate should this anemone be sitting on? <Well, these types of anemones generally prefer a rather deep, soft substrate in which to settle into. Sand and gravel areas are generally the type of habitat you'll find 'em in naturally. If they don't find a spot with such a substrate, they could wander throughout the tank, frying any other sessile inverts that they run into.> My new sebae hasn't even attempted to root into the substrate. He's not looking good, having shrunk to half his size since yesterday. Deb Miller <Deb, it's pretty tough for me to assess what could be wrong with the anemone, because I don't have information on your setup, environmental parameters, etc. For sake of simplicity, let's assume that you have configured your system to suite te anemones needs (high water flow, sufficient lighting provided by full-spectrum metal halide bulbs, and good filtration capability). Let's also assume that your water parameters are up to par (undetectable nitrite, ammonia, etc.). The other consideration is the anemone itself. Did you choose what appeared to be an otherwise healthy specimen to begin with? Was it carefully acclimated, and allowed to adjust to your lighting, etc? Part of what could be going wrong is in the selection/acclimation process. Like all animals, anemones do suffer from the stress of collection, transport, acclimation (or lack thereof, in some instances!), and hunger! In the end, if all of these factors look good, you may simply need to wait it out a bit. If one or more of the required parameters have not been met, either adjust your system accordingly, or consider keeping a less demanding and more plentiful anemone  (such as the Caribbean Condylactis species) until you get the hang of their husbandry. As you are aware, anemones are a fairly precious, limited resource, and we need to be good stewards of their captive population. In the end, you need to do intense research on their requirements, create a system to optimize your chances for success, and develop the husbandry skills to sustain success. If you have not been able to accomplish any of these "requirements", there is no shame in your decision to pass on maintaining one in your aquarium. Good luck Regards, Scott F>

My anemone is losing color 2/12/04 Hello, I have a 75gl all-glass tank with 4 110VHO bulbs( 2blue/2white).  I have 50-60lbs of Fiji rock and a thick bed of live sand.  I am running a Bak pak protein skimmer and a wet/dry filter with two additional power heads for current.  Anyway, I purchased a purple tip sea bay anemone (large) for my maroon clown.  I have had it for around 1wk, and I am currently feeding it small shrimp.  The anemone has a grayish/purple tentacle with purple tips.   <a good and healthy sign/color> I have noticed today it is starting to loose some color in its tentacles.  Its bottom has sucked down between some rocks and has attached itself to a rock about 3-4inches from the top where it is spread out to half of its full size.  Should I move it to a flat rock?   <please do not move it. Let it adapt. It is a dangerous and sometimes fatal mistake to move new or stressed corals and anemones in a short period of time (like new arrivals).> Please help it is a beautiful anemone and I hope it is not dying. Thanks,   Jeremy <I'm wondering if the shrimp you are feeding aren't too large. Aquarists often try to feed foods that are too large for anemones (over 1/4" minced bits) and think the anemone is eating it... but what often happens is that they sting and consume it, then regurgitate it later after the lights go out... leading to slow starvation. Still... you haven't had your anemone long enough to starve it. The loss of color may be water quality of light shock. Did you heed good acclimation tips? Do consider reading/reviewing the article (and FAQs) we have in the archives at wetwebmedia.com on "Acclimating" new corals and anemones to new light. Best regards, Anthony>

- Making a Comeback - About a two weeks ago we had a terrible ice storm.  Temp in the tank dropped to 68--it is a 75 gallon saltwater 60 pounds of live rock.  We were able to get a generator hooked up and slowly brought the temp back up. Fish look great but the anemones are a different story.  I lost the long tentacle and looks like I will lose the bubble tip.  Tentacles are very small and it is not eating.  As of this morning it was still alive and attached but not eating well. Is there anything I can be doing to try and keep it alive? <Not sure there is anything you can do beyond trying to keep the environment as stable as possible. Cheers, J -- >

Anemone Escapade... Hi, I have a question for you... <Sure- Scott F. here today!> When I went out and came back, my Bubble Tip Anemone was stuck in the box filter intake pipe. I pulled it out and was worried about it then filled a spare tank up with saltwater and its living in there what should I do now ?????????      <Well, there is not much that you can do in terms of "treatment". per se. The best course of action is to provide the animals with very good water conditions, proper light, and no disturbances as it recovers. Anemones do have some remarkable recovery capabilities if they are not too far gone. Lastly-and certainly not least-be sure to take steps to secure your aquarium so that future adventures with the intake will not occur. Observe the animal carefully, and with time and a little luck, it should make a full recovery! Good luck! Regards, Scott F.>
Anemone Escapade- Injured Anemone (Pt. 2)
I have 2 maroon clowns that lived in the anemone what will happen to them will they be alright or do they need the anemone? <They should be fine..> Also, how long should I have the light on for it? <I'd continue a regular lighting schedule during the recovery process...Hang in there! Regards, Scott F>

Mystery marine creature... is it safe? I have seen a very small creature sticking out of one of my live rocks. sorry I have no picture at this time I will do my best to get one if it is needed.  This creature is like a very small feather looking thing that is what appears to be white in color with small black rings on it. I don't know if this is the actual creature or just what it uses to feed itself.   There are a few other creatures that I'm not for sure what they are. they are small round hollow looking tubes that look to be attached to one of my live rocks. three are yellow in color, one is a blue-ish color, and the other is white. they have a lot of little hair like things that stick out the front and form a circle like a feather duster but they are too small and attached to the rock to be feather dusters. <Many too many creatures like you described to guess. Nearly all are harmless and signs of good tank health.> Another question is how long does it take a long tentacle anemone to be comfortable in a new aquarium and is there anything I can do to speed the process. I purchased one a week ago and it seems to be very stressed. it gapes from time to time but not for long periods of time. it also swells the top of itself up and retracts it tentacles. is this normal or is there something I might need to change. by the way I have them in a 5 g aquarium for the time being the one I had broke and these are the ones that survived. for the time being I have a 50/50 bulb on them no more than 3 inches above the water behind a plastic shield (does the shield need removed or replaced with glass) a 2 stage BioWheel filter, 50 watt heater, and a 7 inch bubbler. I add a few supplements every other day. for instance iodine, calcium, strontium & molybdenum, and essential elements. Plus I have a 50 watt halogen that points toward the tank from about 2 feet from it. if there is anything you can do to help me it would be appreciated. <Your anemone does sound stressed. It is very unlikely that a 5g aquarium can be equipped to care for it. Biowheel filters are not really suitable for reef tanks as they tend to promote the accumulation of nitrate. The lighting you described is probably also not adequate for anemones (at least strong VHO required). Controlling salinity in such a small tank will be difficult as well. Please discontinue any supplements except for calcium and alkalinity (buffer). Iodine, Sr and Mb can all become toxic very quickly in such a small tank. I would recommend that you test Nitrate, Salinity and alkalinity and take steps to correct any of those that are out of range. For the well being of the anemone (and any other animals in the 5g), please replace your broken tank ASAP.> thanks Dustin sweet <Best Regards. Please do write back with any more questions. Adam>

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