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FAQs on Anemone Identification 13

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Related FAQs: Anemone ID 1, Anemone ID 2, Anemone ID 3, Anemone ID 4, Anemone ID 5, Anemone ID 6, Anemone ID 7, Anemone ID 8, Anemone ID 9, Anemone ID 10, Anemone ID 11, Anemone ID 12, Anemone ID 14, Anemone ID 15, Anemone ID 16 Anemone ID 17, Anemone ID 18, Anemone ID 19, Anemone ID 20, Anemone ID 21, Anemone ID 22, Anemone ID 23, Anemone ID 24, Anemone ID 25, Anemone ID 26, Anemone ID 27, Anemone ID 28, Anemone ID 29, Anemone ID 30, Anemone ID 31, Anemone ID 32, Anemone ID 33, Anemone ID 34, Anemone ID 35, Anemone ID 36, Anemone ID 37, Anemone ID 38, Anemone ID 39, Anemone ID 40, Anemone ID 41, Anemone ID 42, Anemone ID 43, Anemone ID 44, Anemone ID 45, & Cnidarian Identification, Anemones 1, Anemones 2, Anemones 3, Anemones 4, Anemones 5, Invertebrate Identification, Aiptasia Identification, Aiptasia ID 2, LTA Identification, Bubble Tip Anemones, Caribbean Anemones, Condylactis, Aiptasia Anemones, Other Pest Anemones, Anemones and Clownfishes, Anemone Reproduction, Anemone Lighting, Anemone Feeding, Anemone Systems, Anemone Compatibility, Anemone Selection, Anemone Health, Anemone Behavior, Anemone Placement

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

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Unidentified Hitchhiker Anemone -- 03/29/07 Hello and thanks in advance for your help. <<Greetings...and let's hope you find it of some benefit>> I love your site and read from it almost daily for the past two years.  Your advice has always been very helpful and informative. <<Is good to know>> I have just today noticed a small colony of uninvited guests in one of my aquariums. <<Uh-oh>> There are about three anemones that were hiding unseen on my LR until I rearranged while doing some tank maintenance. <<I think I know where this is heading...>> The rock is, I believe, from Fiji, is about 2 yrs old in my possession, and is in my 125 gallon shark tank. <<Mmm...not what you wrote in about and am sure not what you want to hear but...a 125 is 'too small' to be a shark tank>> There is only low lighting in the tank since the shark prefers it dim.  My nitrates are a little high, although otherwise the water quality is good.  I have not intentionally fed this hitchhiker, although I realize he has apparently survived from eating shark scraps, potentially making up for any lack of appropriate lighting. <<If it is what I think it is, it doesn't 'need' any lighting at all>> But the conditions are not such that I would intentionally add a desirable anemone, so I am thinking that this colony is probably going to be a nuisance. <<Agreed>> When I saw the first anemone, I had just moved the rock he was on.  Where he was located was very near the sand bed, if not actually touching it (certainly not seeking out the little light available from his position). <<As stated...doesn't need light>> The entire foot and oral disc are embedded in a small hole in the rock and are not visible.  The tentacles are VERY thin (about the diameter of a thick human hair).  They were extended about 1-2 inches out of his hole and were barely visible due to their thin size.   Upon inspection through the glass with a magnifying scope (the light-up type doctors use to check eyes), I could see that the tentacles were white with red-brown bands that looked like tiny red beads to the naked eye.  The tentacles were smooth and relatively straight (not like a curlicue and not actually beaded, though they appeared beaded to the naked eye).  They did not quickly retreat when disturbed (I have heard and seen that Aiptasia do retract quickly upon disturbance, even lightly moving their home). <<Is not always so...and often a 'learned' response from predation/aquarists sticking them with needles...in my experience>> In fact, the first sighting was immediately after a rather vigorous shaking to rid the rock of detritus.  The anemone stayed out for well over 30 minutes after several attempts to disturb it, trying to get a reaction.  It came out under lighting, did not retract or react in any noticeable way to the lights being turned off, or back on, or to visual inspection in darkness or with flashlight. <<Yes, if  these are Aiptasia, they can contain symbiotic photosynthetic algae, but they don't 'need' the symbionts to survive.  I have seen (have on hand right now even) many cases where this pest anemone survives in a total lack of light, turning white to clear, and surviving/growing/reproducing on what it can grab from the water.  In fact, this animal is also a supreme absorption feeder and will even survive very well in the absence of particulate matter upon which to feed>> My first thought was to take it out of the tank, since I have no desire to have an anemone hanging around my shark's cave-home.  I only waited to remove him because my shark has never had any noted irritation, no injuries, no sores, no scratching, no sickness and no anything-else except good health, so he has apparently not been bothered by this potential pest as of yet. <<Hmmm...these anemones do have a very powerful sting...could become problematic maybe if allowed to proliferate throughout the tank>> After a lengthy inspection, my focus loosened a bit and I noticed at least two others in close proximity to the originally discovered anemone. <<Can become 'dozens' in no time if conditions are optimum>> One of these was identical in description; the other was nearly identical, with the only noted difference being the base color on his tentacles was a slightly lighter red-brown than the "beads" instead of the milky white color of the other two.   <<Perhaps a 'different species' of Aiptasia>> I have already searched and researched two different invert books, plus your site here.  I have found no similar pictures or descriptions.  I have already been familiar with Aiptasia and this looks nothing like any of those I have seen before.  These tentacles are longer and thinner with no apparent taper towards the tips.  I have searched your site for beadlets, Majano, and Aiptasia, plus others.  I have looked at all 13 pages of anemone IDs, plus cnidaria IDs and everything else I could find, so I hope I didn't miss my answer somewhere else. <<Hmm...maybe you have a species of Aiptasia for which we have no photograph>>   I tried to get a picture but the tentacles were too thin for the resolution of my camera, so it was a totally useless picture.  Sorry about the lengthy message, but without a proper pic, I was hoping that I would give enough info to make a good ID. <<No worries about the length of the query...and too bad about the pic...'thousand words,' as they say.  If not Aiptasia, maybe this is a species of hydroid>> Thanks again in advance for your help, Rob Watson <<Sorry it isn't better.  Eric Russell>>

Re: Unidentified Hitchhiker Anemone -- 03/30/07 Thanks for the response, Eric. <<Quite welcome Rob>> You have helped to confirm what I had feared.  I agree about the tank being too small for a shark tank and have a shark "pond" in the planning. <<Ah!...excellent>> For now, though, I think he has enough room until I get the pond built for him. <<Ok>> I have a QT tank in which I currently have some peppermint shrimp and a copperband butterfly.  I will move my shark cave into the tank with them (no meds in the QT) and build a new shark cave out of some live rock from my other tank.  Using the QT will keep them from spreading while we see if the shrimp and copperband do their duties!  =) <<A good strategy>> Thanks again for the help and keep up the great work. <<Welcome...and am trying>> Sincerely, Rob Watson <<Regards, Eric Russell>>

A Curious Find, Tube Anemone  - 03/12/07 Greetings! <Salutations!  Mich with you today.>      I recently purchased a small piece of live rock that had a tube anemone skeleton on it.  After I put the rock in my tank and examined it, I saw a small fan that was electric blue when I looked at it from the bottom up and from the top down it was electric green.  As I continued to watch, some of its tentacles changed to red and purple and yellow.  It was so cool because it looked as if it was producing its own light and could glow in the dark. <Neat!>      My guess is that it's a small tube anemone, but I'd like to know its name and how to care for it.   <Could be an Arachnanthus, Cerianthus or Pachycerianthus spp.  More info here:  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/tubeanem.htm  > Will it grow large enough for me to not have to search for it whenever I want to see its "lights"? <Possibly, but do be careful if it does.  They can pack a powerful sting and are quite capable of killing other livestock.  Hope that helps,  Mich>

Abalone, Haliotis, BTA, Entacmaea quadricolor Compatibility -- 3/7/07 Hi, <Hi Brian, Brenda here tonight> Love the website & thanks for the help!! <Thank you Brian and you're welcome!> I received an abalone today from liveaquaria.com.  After acclimating and placing it in my tank, I noticed two small anemones on the abalone's shell. <No doubt a pest anemone of some sort.> I also have in the tank a rose colored bulb tip anemone.  Will there be any compatibility problems? <You will not have any compatibility problems with the BTA and Abalone.  However, do get rid of the pest anemones that arrived with your order before they take over your tank.  More information here:   http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ca/cav1i3/aiptasia_impressions/aiptaisia_impressions.htm> Thanks, Brian <You're welcome!   Brenda>

Anemone ID 3/7/07 So sorry.  Hope this is better :) <Much better, Jeni> <Your anemone appears to be a Macrodactyla, common names are Long Tentacle and Corkscrew Anemone.  A healthy one will usually have an orange column, but, not always orange.  They are usually found on sandy or muddy bottoms with their column buried in the sand.  My first move would be to surround the anemone with coral sand rather than crushed coral you have.  It is important to research animals you buy before buying to ensure you have the capability/needs of the animal in question.  Most anemones under captive conditions rarely live longer than a year.  I will direct you to a few links you should read to ensure you are providing what this animal needs to survive under aquarium conditions. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/anemones.htm http://www.wetwebmedia.com/anempt2.htm Do read linked files also.  James (Salty Dog)>

Anemone ID 2/27/07 Hello WWM crew, <Hello Frank> Your site has been invaluable to me over the past year, while I planned and implemented my first reef aquarium. Thanks! <You're welcome.> I recently came across this critter attached to the back of some live rock, in a spot where very little light reaches, and I haven't been able to figure out what it is. Some folks have offered that it might be Aiptasia, but if so, it sure doesn't look like any I've seen yet. Can you point me in the right direction? <Mmm, by looking at the pic, my guess would be a Rock Anemone, Bob?> <<I am NOT a rock anemone. RMF>> Thanks!
<You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)>

Anemone, ID, sel.  2/27/07 Dear James <Akila>   Thanks again for your valuable info. <You're welcome.> Attached here is a picture of an anemone that is there in the LFS. I am not that experienced with anemone. If possible please let me know what is anemone is and whether it's a good first anemone addition to my 80G tank. I have 2 Clarkii Clowns, 1 Lunar Wrasse and 2 Blue Damsels. <In my opinion,  a good first anemone would be a Bubble Tip.   The anemone in your photo appears to be a Heteractis specie (Sebae Anemone), a much more difficult to keep anemone than the Bubble Tip.  Heteractis anemones require much more light than Bubble Tips.  Do read here and related links above for the information you seek.  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/heteraccrispa.htm> Hope you hear from you soon. Best regards,
<James (Salty Dog)

Anemone or tube worm? ID Tube Anemone!   2/14/07 Thank you for helping identify this beautiful creature for me.   <You're welcome, it is a Tube Anemone (Cerianthus spp.).  Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/tubeanem.htm  > My local experts on separate occasions gave me anemone and tubeworm.  Not by any purposeful doing has it survived my excruciatingly slow learning curve on this salt water habitat we have in our veterinary office. <Much to learn.> Just as I have developed the perception that pet stores should only sell pet 'stuff' not live critters, I now feel the same about the naive walking in and buying sea (or fresh water) creatures. <A wise perception.> I should go iron my hands for all the living things I was 'advised' to purchase with no regard for where our tank was at, what they ate, water quality etc. <Excellent that you have gained this wisdom, though I would hold off on ironing your hands.  You use them to care for so many others.  That being said, the aquarist cannot rely on the pet store for all guidance.  The aquarist needs to be responsible and conscientious.  This means caring about and knowing the needs of those creatures in your care.> And shame on me for knowing about "dilution is the solution to    pollution" when in a dogs abdomen, but my fish and various other    invertebrates swimming in a cesspool was OK (I was informed that the water never got changed in the long-lived tank at the original store we purchased our set up from so there was no need to consider doing this with my tank.) <Oy vey!  But you are aware of you past ignorance, which has hopefully spurred you into action, so, good for you and your tank!> I am slowly putting things together and I am rereading a variety of books I originally purchased including Reef Invertebrates and some lights are going on. <I would recommend you begin with a book titled The Conscientious Marine Aquarist by Robert M. Fenner (one of the authors of Reef Invertebrates).  It is the best place to start and will help you put the pieces together.> Hopefully quick enough to keep alive what has survived so far, and to assist those I will carefully select in future. <Positive for all involved.> I did not see a fee anywhere for your services, perhaps I missed    this, or you have a worthy organization to donate to?? <No fees are charged.  WetWebMedia is an all volunteer organization.  Donations are greatly appreciated and are used to help educate our crew, that we might in turn educate and inspire others.  There is a link on the bottom of the tube anemone page if you care to make a donation.> Some of the information on your site should be mandatory pre-purchase reads. <Yes I would agree.  It is my opinion that the book I recommended should be read by everyone who has a saltwater tank, it would save many lives.> Dr Jo Olver
<Thank you for your letter.  -Mich>
Re: Anemone or Tube Worm? ID Tube Anemone!   2/14/07 <A snowy hello to you Dr. Jo, Mich with you again.> Oh Gosh - Thanks.   <Welcome!> How did I miss that?  Rhetorically speaking. <Easy to do when you don't really know what your looking for, trust me, been there, done that.> Web sites such as this prove the value of the internet. <Yes. I can't even imagine how challenging this hobby was in the days before the internet!> I cannot imagine whatever I could do to help except for periodic donations, <Always appreciated.  Furthers our education and hopeful many others as well.> but if I ever could you may put my name on your list of janitor potentials! <Hehehe!  We're good with janitors.  Do you know how to place rotating banner ads on the top of our site? Now that would be most helpful!> Thanks again very much. <You are most welcome!> Dr Jo from snowy upstate NY. <Being buried right there with ya in the Poconos!  -Mich>

Beware of the Hitcher....anemone version   2/11/07 I set up my saltwater tank about 2 1/2 weeks ago. While i was putting my crabs and snails in the tank in I noticed something growing on the back of my live rock. I know it is an anemone but don't know what kind. <Appears to be a majano of some sort.> I don't think it is a pest anemone but I not sure. <Not as bas as "some" others but I would rather "go-along" without it.> Can you tell from the picture what kind this is? <Pictures alone of such inverts. rarely lead to a 100% i.d. but we can/will get close...see above.> Also, I plan on having at least one clown fish, but I also am going to have other kinds of fish that are not immune to it. <Fish are not in danger.....should it multiply....sessile inverts are another story.> I have a 26 gallon tank with a 130 watt power compact. If it is not a pest anemone should I keep it or go ahead and get rid of it? It is about the size of a quarter right now. How fast will it possibly grow and how big? <Search WWM re: majano anemone.> Let me know if you need anymore information. I appreciate any help you can give me. <Anytime.>
<Adam J.>

Hermit Crab Question, Polyp ID... sans photo   1/31/07 <Hello Rhonda-Leigh, Mich with you today.> We recently acquired a LARGE hermit crab that has apparently placed himself in a shell that was inhabited (externally) by some type of (well, that is sort of my question). On the outside of this spiraling shell is 3 polyp looking things approx. 1"-1.5" in diameter. They are pinkish/red and are living organisms of some kind. <OK.> When not bothered they fan out of these polyp looking outer parts and look like BIG coral polyps.  But when bothered or touched by the crabs claws, they retract and sort of resemble well colored barnacles. (that is what my boyfriend thought they were until I researched and didn't see anything like that in a barnacle species) Any help that you may provide would be helpful. If it would be better, I can take a picture of them and send it to you via email. Let me know. <Yes, you know the old adage, a picture is worth a thousand words... "polyp looking thing" isn't terribly helpful here... unless it's merely a polyp, you might want to do an image search for Palythoa grandis and see if that could be your critter.> Thank you in advance, <You're welcome!  -Mich> Rhonda-Leigh

Re: new tank live rock hitchhiker... Tulip Anemones   1/23/07 Hi Crew!   <Hi Angela, Mich here!> We are in the process of setting up a new marine aquarium (our first!), and just added our live rock yesterday.  We have a beautiful hitch-hiker. . . My husband and I both believe it to be some sort of anemone, but don't know which type (after approx 2 hours of searching your archives. . . )  (see links to photos below)  It is approximately 5 mm or one quarter inch across.  It has greenish tentacle tips and base with a pink "mouth" surface/tentacles.  It seems to have a cylindrical base, and has been moving around the rock we placed it on (after realizing it was there on the substrate) looking for a comfy home.  Please forgive the "foggy" photos, the substrate is a little stirred up from placing the LR.   <Sounds/looks like a Tulip Anemone.  There is a photo and info on this Faq's page:   http://www.wetwebmedia.com/anemidfaq3.htm> Since this is a brand new tank, we expect quite a bit of water quality fluctuation.  Seeing as it's the only visibly living thing in our tank, we're growing quite fond of it.  Is there any possibility this creature will survive?   <Yes, they are pretty hardy, to the degree that it is possible for  them to become a pest if they are completely ignored.  That being said they are relatively easy to remove and share with fellow aquarists.  I personally think they are quite beautiful and a nice addition.> And if so, what can we do to ensure it's survival (feeding, etc.)? <They will readily accept most any small meaty food, from flake to fresh shrimp etc.> Thank you! <Welcome!  -Mich> Angela http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/angela_myers/tank/anemone2.jpg http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c316/angela_myers/tank/anemone1.jpg

Anemone ID 1/23/07 Greeting WWM Crew, <Hello Thomas> I love your site, it has been of great assistance to me for a long time. <Good to hear.> I recently purchased what my LFS told me was a white carpet anemone, but from researching it on your site, it have come to the conclusion that it is not.  I have been through all of the anemone ID pages and have not come to a conclusion, so my hope is you can be of some assistance in identifying it. <Appears to be a Heteractis crispa not doing too well.  Do read hear and linked files above on proper systems for keeping anemones.  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/anemones.htm> As you may notice on the picture I have not been successful in feeding it either. I have tried plankton squirted onto it through a baster, but no luck. What should I be feeding and how? <Above link and related files will tell all.> in advance, thank you very much for your assistance. <You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)>
Thomas Krog

Mmm, maybe not. RMF

ID Help - Unknown Anemone  - 1/22/07 Greetings Bob and crew, Hope this finds you having a wonderful day! <Hello, Laura! Thank you for this, and I hope the same for you and yours!> I need some help identifying this little hitchhiker that came with the live rock I recently purchased from Premium Aquatics. <Ok> Upon first glance I was afraid it might be Aiptasia. <Mmm, I agree here.> But after searching through all the pages here I can't find a photo or description that is an exact match for what I have here.  I am attaching 2 pics, with a view from each side.  It is hiding in a rock, has a clear base, and retracts into the rock when frightened. The tentacles are also clear and pointy.  If you look close (not visible in the photos), there are some very tiny tentacles in between the larger ones also. There are no colors, bands or spots on this at all. It is completely clear, perhaps a bit whitish, and is about 1/2 inch long, and about 1/2 inch diameter across the top.  Feel free to post/use the photos as you wish. <We post all> Do you think this is some type of anemone I have been lucky enough to adopt, or is it the dreaded Aiptasia?   <Too likely the latter.> If so, I want to take care of it right away so it won't sting any of the new additions I am planning to add.  Thanks so much for your help with this! Laura <Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, Laura, but better to know sooner than later. Good luck! -JustinN>

Anemone ID 4/14/07 Hi Crew- <Hello Becky> Question about this anemone.  What kind is it?  I wanted a LTA, but the base is orange.  I think it may be a Ritteri. <I believe what you have is what you wanted, a LTA or Corkscrew Anemone.> After I read up on their needs, and saw they are super difficult to keep, I wanted to ask your opinion on this matter. <There are no easy anemones to keep.> I had placed the anemone high on a rock, in my tank under a 175 MH.  The tank has two 175 MH.  I had to remove an aggressive fish, so I took the rock the anemone was on and placed it on the substrate.  The anemone crawled off and buried it's base.  That's where it is now. <Yes, they like to burrow into the sand which would be a much better substrate for them than the gravel you have.> Will the anemone move itself if it's not getting enough light, current, etc? <They will find the ideal spot.> Do you think it looks "happy" in the picture? <I do see a grin on it, but should look a little better (extended more) and probably will once it adapts.> Suggestions please. <Sure, read here and related links:    http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/anemones.htm> My tank is a 155 bow with live rock, fish, polys, a few LPS, and snails.  Thank you! <You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)>

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