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FAQs on Bulb, Bubble Tip/Rose Anemone Use in Marine Aquariums 5

Related Articles: Bubble Tip, Rose Anemones, Entacmaea quadricolor, Use in Marine Systems by Bob Fenner, Bubble Tip Anemones by Jim Black,  Recent Experiences with BTA's by Marc Quattromani, Anemones, Cnidarians, Colored/Dyed Anemones

Related FAQs: E. quad. FAQ 1, E. quad FAQ 2, E. quad. FAQ 3, E. quad FAQ 4BTAs 6, BTAs 7, BTAs 8, & BTA ID, BTA Compatibility, BTA Selection, BTA Behavior, BTA Systems, BTA Feeding, BTA Disease, BTA Reproduction/Propagation, Anemones, Anemones 2Caribbean Anemones, Condylactis, Aiptasia Anemones, Anemones and Clownfishes, Anemone Reproduction, Anemone Lighting, Anemone Identification, Anemone Selection, Anemone Behavior, Anemone Health, Anemone Placement, Anemone Feeding Heteractis malu

New Print and eBook on Amazon:  

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

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Interesting BTA question  9/29/08 So I have had a little Green BTA for about a year now. He started out about 3" in diameter. Under poor lighting he quickly lost his beautiful green coloring and turned zooxanthellae brown. <Better than white> It stayed that way for about 8months before placing it in a much larger home with more lighting. Certainly not enough lighting for him to get his green back (96 watts of t5 in a 60gal). <Mmm, what re purposeful feeding?> over the course of three months in the 60g he did well. I feed him two times a week of mysis <I'd diversify> and had a Maroon that hosted him. <Mmm, a Premnas may be "too much" host> His tentacles seemed long (not bulbing) and wavy. I went on vacation for three weeks and under in-adequate care, bleached. He turned all white except for the base and over time shrunk from 3" to about 1". <Bad> I soon started to place other types of corals in the tank, I knew I had to upgrade the lighting. So I choice <chose> to replace the T5 with a SunPod 150w HQI. He started to bubble up instantly, still remaining white. I feed him more frequently (rough 4 times a week) and tried to place him higher in the tank for more light. So after consideration I placed 48watts of the T5 (two Giesemann bulbs) back on the tank and now I am running 150 watts HQI and 48 watts T5. Two days after doing this the BTA split into two. Now I am lucky to have two little tiny white BTA's. Is the addition of more lighting a reason for this? <Likely a factor, yes> Will the zooxanthellae grow quicker now that the size in much smaller and the are two separate organisms? <Mmm, likely so> After loosing <losing> its coloration to poor lighting a year ago, will these little guys get it back? <Perhaps> How can I accelerate the growth? <Better feeding, supplements nutritionally...> What can I do to help these creatures? <... Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm and the linked files above> My water is changed religiously and the quality of the water is to spec. I am running an SG of 1.026. Thanks guys and as always your work does not go unappreciated. This site is a wealth of knowledge. Thanks Spencer Hall <Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re: Interesting BTA question  9/29/08
Thank you Mr. Fenner, its and honor to have a questions answered by you. I will keep reading and researching. Would you recommend soaking something like mysis in supplements then feeding the two? Thanks Spencer Hall <A good idea... but would use other sources of meaty, saltwater-based foods as well... BobF>

In need of advice for anemone care, Entacmaea, insufficient data     8/8/08 I have a anemone which I have had for about 5 months (Bubble tip), recently it has been smaller in size and very slow response to feeding or even its clown host( it has taken a constant shape of a flower by folding it self). At one point my nitrates were up but I did a water change and his condition has not changed. Any idea's on what could be wrong? <Perhaps too much attention, physical interaction from the Clown...> My lighting is a 150W metal halide in a 36 bow front and I have a wave maker with two 1200 series maxi jets for water movement. I feed it 2-3 times a week with mysis shrimp and it has a maroon clown as a host. Thanks, Mike De Giovanni <Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm and the linked files above... for background, some ideas of the sorts of issues you may be observing. Bob Fenner>

Small Anemone... BTAs, reading/using WWM    7/26/08 Hi, I have a 55 gallon hex reef tank that has been up for about 5-6 months now. It has a sand bed of about 3-4 inches all around and 60 lbs live rock. There is a built-in sump/refug in the back with a Rio 800 powerhead flowing back into the tank, a protein skimmer 2-65 watt actinic lights and 1-175 watt 14,000K MH. There is also a Koralia 2 (600gph) pump in the tank. I currently have 3 chromis', 2 snails, 2 hermit crabs, a conch, and a red-spotted blenny. Yesterday I bought a very small BTA (1-2 inches in diameter) at my LFS. They had said earlier in the week that one of their local breeders/dealers had an anemone and a percula clown pair. They didn't know how big it was until he arrived yesterday, <... these animals "shrink" and expand a great deal... depending on "conditions"...> and they told me it was the smallest anemone they had ever seen. I drip acclimated him to the tank, adding water every 5-10 min.s for about an hour and a half. I tried to handle him as delicately as possible because he is so tiny and soft. I placed him on a rock where he gets plenty of light from the metal halides (about halfway down in the tank). <... will seek its own...> When I got up this morning, he moved about 2-3 inches away, hiding behind the rock but still opened up and spread out to the light. I'm guessing he's still stressed though, as he seems to have a bleached color. <...> I see him inflating and deflating every so often (which I read was normal), and I see him move one of his bubble tips once in a while. Also, he moved closer to the heater, but the temp of the tank has been around 82 degrees Fahrenheight. <... have you even read on WWM re Entacmaea?> On to the actual questions: Are anemones usual to start out that size? <... are squeezed down to move... take a while to adjust to captive care...> How long can I expect it to take for him to get to about 5 inches in diameter? <... depends... perhaps forever... if bleached, likely it will perish...> Do BTAs fare that well with good conditions/lighting when they are that size? Or do many die? The LFS gave him to me for free because they don't have a tank with good lighting that he could be in. Should I try to find some other LFS that could take care of him better than my tank could? Also, I plan on getting a pair of small percula clowns (~2 inches), will they try to host him, even when he's that small? I like him, and would definitely like to keep him, but I'm not sure if the clowns would kill him, or if it would mean that I couldn't get another BTA in the near future (for the clowns to host). I've never read on your site or others about problems with small anemones or possibly that they even exist except for pedal laceration. Is that likely where he came from? Also, the Koralia 2 was near him, could it have been too much flow, causing him to move a little bit away? Thanks very much. Sorry I don't have any pics to show at the moment. -Aaron <Have just skipped down. Please, read: http://wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Possible E. quadricolor, BTA with Multiple Mouths - 5/31/08 Hi, <Hello Katherine, Brenda here!> Thank you so much for all of the information shared on your site. <You're welcome!> It has helped tremendously especially with the lack of published books available on similar topics. <It is good to hear that you find it helpful. > My question pertains to my Bubble Tip Anemone. I have read through the questions online and have not found one specifically asking about multiple mouths. My BTA has developed 3-4 mouths (sets of little white closed pairs of rounded lips or so it appears.) They are typically visible the day after the anemone is fed when it is expelling its wastes. <Interesting! > While I was trying to photograph them today, I noticed a small raised ridge going vertically down the center. I have been reading the Q&As about BTA reproduction, but they do not address multiple mouths being present (I am assuming that they are lips, that is what they look like.) Is this normal? <Multiple mouths is rare, but I have seen it. However, I'm not convinced that this is what is going on. > Should I be concerned? <Multiple mouths will not affect the health of the anemone. Can you send me a picture so that I can be sure that this is what is going on? > If the anemone is splitting, will it split into the same number of divisions as there are mouths? <It is possible, but impossible to say for sure. Anemones typically form their mouth after a split, not before. > Is there anything I can do to make the transition/split easier or less traumatic for the anemone? <No, and we can't be sure it is in the process of splitting just yet. > Thank you in advance for sharing your knowledge. Have a blessed day, Katherine <You're welcome! Brenda >

New Anemone Requirements  2/13/08 Hi Guys, <Greetings!> I have just found out that my partner has bought me a sea anemone for my 35 gallon marine tank. <Lucky! I get chocolate but would much prefer an anemone!> Although I am delighted (and hope if will be of benefit for my 2 common clown's) I do have a few reservations as its my first one! <I think that's the right attitude too - reservations bring about informed decisions usually!> I have checked my water parameters which seem fine and I have about 10kg of live rock in the tank. I firstly wanted to check that my lighting was ok (4 x 24 inch T5 marine lights) and that my water movement was sufficient? I have 3 nano power heads (rated at 900l/hour) which run off a wave maker and also have a skimmer and an external canister which additional movement. <All this really does depend on the anemone species, and unfortunately you don't list it> Finally I can I ask about compatibility? Will my anemone be ok with the other critters in the tank? I have a cleaner wrasse (not recommended I understand but he seems to be ok), a fire fish and an algae blenny. I also have a clean up crew (shrimps, hermit crabs and turbo snails) and really hope that they will be ok with the new introduction? <Cant see any major problems on that list, most things do have a natural wariness about anemones, but again, it would be dependant on the species; there may be trouble...> Thanks for any help you can give; this is a really good website! Cheers, David <Thanks for the feedback, David - we appreciate it. To give a more informed reply, I really need to know what species you have. If you don't know, you can send in a picture (note the restrictions on this though), or better still, search through our Anemone pages. I dare say this will help you with your other questions too. Start here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/anemones.htm and then use the related FAQs to guide you. Do come back to me with the required information for a more substantive reply, should, after searching, you still need. Thanks, Mike I>

Re: New Anemone Requirements  2-14-08 Hi Mike, Appreciate the response. <Hi, and no problem. One request though when replying back to us. Please reply using our initial response back to you. That way we can keep a track of the advice we've given to date> I have had a look on the link provided and my anemone would appear to be a bubble tip (look spectacular under marine blue lights!). <One of my favourite anemones!> The lights I have are 24 watts each so the total is 96watts in all so given the advice on the site of 4-5 watts per gallon; it looks like I could be somewhat short in terms of lighting? <Probably, Entacmaea quadricolor (the scientific name for a bubble Tipped Anemone) are known not to be too light demanding, but a little more wouldn't hurt. They do fine with metal halide lamps, so don't worry about going overboard. Aim for the suggested recommendation or better.> I plopped the anemone in the tank last night and was advised to let it roam around on its own accord. It has not 'anchored' as yet and I wondered how long it would take and presumably the best thing is to leave it be? <Unless it is in danger (please make sure that any intakes are protected), then you should leave it be indefinitely - touching/moving an anemone stresses the animals. It is quite normal for an anemone to take a little time to stake out a home, but after a week or so, if the correct conditions are there, I'd expect it to settle down.> Would a large amount of current affect its ability to anchor?. <If healthy, it shouldn't, no> On another note my small perc clown has taken to it but the bigger perc just looks puzzled. Highly entertaining all the same! Thanks again, Dave <Dave, again thanks for coming back to us. Do read more of the archived FAQs and indices on WWM regarding your type of anemone - the information you'll glean will be invaluable. On the wandering front, it's not unusual for a newly introduced anemone to go walk about to find the most suitable spot in terms of light, current, environmental protection etc. Once it finds these it should settle. So if after a week or so it doesn't, it's having trouble finding a spot to it's liking and you should re-examine if you're providing the right environment for the animal. Start here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm  and here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/btasysfaqs.htm  and then use the linked FAQs. Good luck, Mike I>

Bubble-Tip Anemone Help... reading/using WWM   2/14/08 Hi There! I have 29 Gal marine tank that has been running for about 7 or 8 months now. I have a problem with my anemone! <This system is too small...> I just purchased it a couple of days ago and everything was going fine until yesterday I was using a turkey baster to feed it and accidentally shot some air into it's mouth. <?> It held onto a rock for a while but eventually had to let go and began floating at the top of the tank. <Mmm, not simply from/by this...> Should it not be able to get this air out on it's own? <Yes...> In a panic I tried to push the air out or at least tip the anemone around so that it would flow out of it's mouth but it had it's mouth closed fairly tight. So following the advice of some nice people at aquaria central I used an old net and tied it down to a rock <Good> to hope that it would be able to get the air out on it's own and return to normal. I left it like that overnight and this morning not much had changed. plus every time I try to reattach the netting or move it my clownfish full on attacks my hand! So I am worried that I have stressed it out far too much and don't know what to do from here. I'm currently at school and have no idea how it has been since 10 this morning (it's about 4 now). I am just wondering what I can do to de-stress it and/or hopefully keep it alive! Thank you so much for the reply... <Read: http://wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm  and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

E. quad hiding... reading   01/22/2008 Hey guys,. had an e. quad BTA for a few days now, he found a nice spot under some light and was there for around 48 hours, I fed it some green prawn yesterday which he ate normally, I woke up this morning to find him at the back of the piece of rock away from the light, and since then he has moved further down touching the substrate. Any possible reason for this? Thanks, Oscar <.... read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm  and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>
Re: e. quad hiding 1/23/08
I have read that entire page many times, and if you're referring to: " And a note re post feeding behavior. It is not unusual for a just-fed, digesting BTA to "hunker down", shrink in size, pull it's tentacular disk inward and stay this way sometimes for a few days... Do be on the lookout for egested waste packets... and remove these with a net or siphon." It wasn't hunkered down, it was fully open, on a 45 degree angle half on the substrate half on the live rock and not in the middle of a journey because he stayed there all day. He is on a bommie to keep him off the main ledges, I didn't think they liked moving on substrate? <Really only when "unhappy"> Bob, I wouldn't email you without reading everything else first. Sorry, Oscar (still worried). <Are there other Cnidarians present? BobF>

Bubble Tip Anemone/Compatibility 11/9/07 Hey WWM crew - you guys have been TERRIFICALLY helpful in getting my new reef tank up and running, much as it should be within the first 3 months, and I can't thank you enough for the quick and thorough responses (not to mention the wide range database of previous responses)! <You're welcome, glad to help.> To give just a brief background, I have a 72 gallon bow with 10k florescent lighting, sump, protein skimmer (Oceanic I believe) and pretty much all the necessary trimmings. Approximately 85 pounds of Fiji live rock, 6 hermits, 8 Turbos, an Ocellaris clown, a PJ cardinal and, the source of my questions today, a Bubble Tip Anemone (just added). So last night I added the anemone with the full blessing of my LFS. I tested my water, all looks good (had the store double check...I'm lucky to have an EXCELLENT fish shop nearby with a very friendly owner with whom I'm on a first name basis now)...and asked for advice as to what the next good thing to add would be. The guy suggested this anemone. So I took it home, acclimated it, placed it on the rock etc, and the tentacles which had withdrawn, all came back out and he seemed pretty happy. Went to sleep, woke up this morning and lo and behold, as I knew he would, the anemone moved himself. Now I'm cool with the anemone moving, but I guess I have 3 specific questions: 1. If he walks over any corals I have in there (currently just a Zoanthid or something like that...little tubes with red/green blooms on the end) will he kill them/damage them? I know his sting is relatively minor, <Is not relatively minor to corals/inverts.> but I want to make sure I'm not going to add anything after him that he's going to kill... <No anemones are safe with corals and is not recommended mixing the two for the very reason you have just observed....they move, and will sting anything in their path.> 2. Is my oceallis <Ocellaris> clown likely to take up residence? He hasn't shown any interest in even checking it out at this point, and I've read a lot of sites that seem to indicate that the oceallis <Please do a spelling check before sending and cap all pronouns. Saves us much time if we do not have to do this for you.> does not often take an anemone for a home...would I be better off swapping for another species? <On the contrary, wild caught Ocellaris Clownfish much prefer living in an anemone. Your clownfish may have been tank bred and these fish will unlikely habituate an anemone.> If so, which one? (My son loves the 'Nemo' look of the oceallis...is there another that looks similar but is more prone to the anemone/clown relationship?) <The True Percula is similar but a little more difficult to keep. At your low experience level, I'm surprised your dealer recommended an anemone, especially with corals present, and the fact that anemones are not long lived.> 3. Finally, the spot that the anemone moved himself to was tucked down behind a huge chunk of live rock. Is he likely to take this as his permanent hangout, or is he likely to continue moving about willie nillie and be in a different place each day? My primary concern on this is that if he's going to stay where he put himself, it's going to make feeding very difficult... <Your BTA will move until it finds a place suitable to it's liking, those factors are usually water movement and light intensity. As anemones are photosynthetic, it is very important to provide lighting intense enough to promote photosynthesis, as they do produce most of their own food. Thanks for all of your help, in advance...and I apologize that my one question turned into about 10 little quesitons <questions>! <I suggest you read here and linked files above. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/anemones.htm> Also, here are a couple pics I snapped of the Bubble Tip last night, shortly after acclimation...one with the day lamps, the other (obviously) the night lamps.
<James (Salty Dog)>

BTA help, reading   10/20/07 Dear Bob, <Jason> I had a BTA in my 55 gallon tank that had bleached when I moved it to my new 180 gallon tank about 7-8 months ago. I went to my LFS and they told me to add a second one that would likely release zooxanthellae into the water and probably be picked up by the bleached anemone. <A possibility... though such zooxanthellae can be "brought in" from other organisms...> The new anemone MAYBE lasted a week before disintegrating. The bleached BTA isn't getting any smaller or bigger and the tips still have a green hue to them. Though the area around the mouth has lined ribs but have been empty in between each one. It still closed and opens and its foot is firmly attached to my LR. Is there anyway to save it? I have started keeping my MHO on it for 8 hrs a day to see if it helps but also is there anything I can add to the water. <Possibly... you don't state what the current make-up is...> I have tried to feed it but it doesn't accept any shrimp or krill pieces I try to feed it. <Need to be smaller bits...> Only reason I haven't removed it is because it doesn't seem to be deteriorating any and I hate to remove and throw out a live creature. Thanks for your help. Jason Tank specs: 180 gallon with 3- 250 Watt MHO and actinic bulbs and moon lights 20 gallon mud sump 30 gallon trickle filter 0 nitrates and nitrites 1.023 salinity I do have a slightly elevated phosphate level which is adding to a hair algae problem and I am currently using PhosBan on it. Modified SeaClone protein skimmer 40 watt UV sterilizer 8.4 PH <Mmm, please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm  and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Dying BTA??? Reading?  10/17/07 Good Evening to you.... <And you> I'm about to have a major meltdown.... well... my tank is I think.... I have a 45 gallon tank with CoraLife compact lunar lights...One 96 watt true actinic 03 blue compact fluorescent and one 96 watt 10,000K daylight compact fluorescent. <Mmm... not enough light for a large Pacific Anemone... I would read... and switch out the actinic for more white here> Today I went to my LFS and bought a BTA....It has drastically shrunk in size and detached itself from the rock that it came on. <Bad...> Now it's lying on the bottom of my tank and the tips all look "Limp"...for lack of a better word...all my parameters are normal....my fish are a Maroon and Gold Clown, and 3 small damsels. <Likely trouble for this Entacmaea in its condition...> When I introduced the BTA to the tank, the clown went to it immediately and began to make Nice with it......it's still trying to host with it....I'm not sure if the BTA is dying or dead...HELP ..... Claudia <Help yourself. Start here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm  and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Entacmaea reading  - 10/04/07 To whom it may concern, I have a question about a Bubble Tip Anemone. I have had it for about 6 months and all has seemed well. Although this has happened only once, it ate one of its tentacles. I watched it stick the tentacle in it's mouth, and then spit it back out, with a considerably shorter tentacle. What might be the cause. <Seemingly a mistake. An error?> My water parameters, (I do not want to go the whole list), are consistent with what you recommend for reef quality. I feed him a bit of shrimp, silversides, or chopped crab twice a week. I have a 30 gallon tank <Too small to be suitably stable> with only the anemone and a clown fish. I have about 40 lbs of live rock and a Sea-Clone protein skimmer that works very well. What could have caused it to do this? <To do... the tentacle consumption...> Other than this peculiar action, it has done well, has grown, and has shown no signs of ill health. Thank you very much Jake Boswell <You have read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm  and the linked files above? Bob Fenner>

How do I handle an Anemone? - 6/24/07 Hi <Hello, Brenda here> I just started a SW tank up and was thinking about purchasing a BTA. Is it ok if you touch it when you put it in the tank? Will it sting me? What other way could I put it in? <Your tank should be six months old minimum before adding an anemone. Anemones need established environments. Anemones can sting you. I have been stung a few times. It is best to wear gloves when handling an anemone. Brenda>

Problems with my anemone... no useful info... re BTA   5/8/07 Hey. I've looked all over the internet, <Uh, no... not on WWM you haven't...> and I can't find an answer to my question. I'm hoping you can help. <Will try> I have a bubble-tip anemone. I've had it for 5 to 6 months. It seemed to do really well for most of the time. Within the past few weeks, though, it has had fewer and fewer tentacles. They're just disappearing. Now it looks like a disc with only a few stubs for tentacles. It has bright white lines leading from it's mouth (I was told their stress lines, but I don't know). I can't figure out what the problem is. I have a 50 gallon tank, salinity is 1.025, nitrates, nitrites, ammonia are all 0, phosphates aren't quite at 0, but pretty close. Temp is about 77 degrees. I feed it squid once or twice a week (it stopped eating it and probably hasn't had any for a few weeks). <... not a useful diet...> I have two 96 watt 10,000K power compacts. I've been told that isn't ideal lighting, but adequate. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance. Tyler Johnson <This is it info. wise? Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Bleached BTA, Entacmaea quadricolor eats bicolor angel - 4/15/07 Please help me identify this anemone. <Sure will> I brought it from my local pet store and recently it killed my bicolor angel. His head was sucked in his mouth. <A bicolor angel should not be kept with an anemone.  It is known to nip at them.> Did the anemone sting or just suffocate my angel cause he was hungry or for any other reason. I have been feeding the anemone since I brought it home on a regular basis. <Your anemone was likely defending itself.  What have you been feeding your anemone?  It is hungry.  The short tentacles are a sign that it is not getting enough to eat.> It has a brown base with white chubby tentacles and at times they appear to be thin and pointy like. <Your anemone is a bubble tip anemone, Entacmaea quadricolor.  It is known to have "chubby" tentacles at times.  Your anemone is also bleached.  This means it has expelled its zooxanthellae.  Zooxanthellae is an algae the lives inside them.  I suggest feeding meat foods, like silversides, soaked in Selcon daily.  I also suggest portions no bigger than the anemones mouth.> I have attached a couple of photos I took this morning. If it's not too much to ask could you send me a link or some information on his requirement and what if any special precautions I should take. <I recommend researching before you purchase.  Anemones are delicate and difficult to keep creatures with special requirements.  There is a lot of information regarding such on WWM.  Also www.karensroseanemones.net is also a great site.> Thanks in advance for all your help. Cheers, Kristy <You're welcome!  Brenda>
Re:  Bleached BTA, Entacmaea quadricolor eats bicolor angel - 4/16/07 Thank you again for all your help. <You're Welcome!> I have been feeding frozen brine shrimp as the person I purchased from suggested and for now on I will be feeding it daily. <Brine shrimp has little or no nutritional value.  Try some silversides.  Once your anemone is healthy again, you can cut back on feedings to 2 - 3 times a week.> Will my clowns go in this as they haven't yet? <There is no guarantee with clownfish.  It may take some time, and it may never happen.> Is this because he is hungry? <No.> I have a pair of Ocellaris. Also in my 5ft tank I have a large Regal blue tang, a very beautiful Large Powder Blue Tang (Surgeon Fish), Coral beauty and a Heralds Angel <C. heraldi?> along with some live rock and a Catalaphyllia. I also purchased a medium sized butterfly fish and was told it won't eat the Catalaphyllia as he will sting the fish.  The fish pecked at the coral. I have now moved the butterfly to a different tank.  Will the coral come back to its normal self again and why didn't it sting the butterfly? <Butterfly fish are known to eat anemones, which also sting.  It is likely immune to the sting.  It should never be kept with corals or anemones.  It may come back.  It really depends on the amount of damage and if it is in a healthy environment.  You have to be careful with Angel fish and Butterfly fish with corals and anemones.  As far as your anemone's health, it sounds like there is a lot going on here.  Feedings need to be changed, and increase.  It needs to be separated from the Angel fish, Butterfly fish and Catalaphyllia.  It sounds like you are getting some bad advice.  I suggest making a list of all your livestock and researching their care and compatibility.>   Thank you.
<You're welcome!  Brenda>


Ready For A BTA And pH Questions 1/10/07 Good afternoon Crew, <Good evening Brandon> I have two quick questions for you guys and gals. I have a 55 gallon reef tank that has been up and running for about 3 months now. Water quality is better then I have thought it could be after this little time. NH4/NH3 = 0, NO2 = 0 and NO3 = 0. I had to test with two different test kits because I did not believe it. My Ca = 450ppm and 12 dKH. My PH is about 8.3 with my new Hanna Test pen that I got for X-mas. I have been running around testing everything that is liquid to play with it and found something odd. My RO/DI unit is putting out water at a PH of 9.0 Is that normal? <Seems high to me.  Did you calibrate your tester with a pH 8.0 solution?.  For measuring freshwater, it is advisable to calibrate with a 7.0 pH solution.  The tip should also be cleaned after every test.> I would figure it would be closer to 7 if anything. I am battling a bit of a hair algae problem but I just introduced the first major clean up crew this past week and they seem to be putting a dent in it (5 Emerald crabs, 25 Astrea snails, 10 Cerith snails, 20 Scarlet hermits and 20 Blue leg hermits. I suspect that my test levels are so low because any NO3 in my tank is being eaten by the hair and not being tested. My lighting is 4 x 65W PC lights with 2 12,000K and 2 Blue. I put a 2 X 35W PC on from time to time with 10,000K lights but it does not fit too well under the canopy and makes the back of the tank look yellow. With the normal 65W lights and pretty good flow (closed system from the sump running a Mag 9 with an output of 3 1/2" flare bars) and a BTA place at least 1/2 way up the tank, Do you think this is proper for a BTA? <A good start, but the BTA is going to move to an area of his liking.> No corals are in the tank and will not be for quite sometime if ever. I am kind of afraid of corals! :) <Shouldn't mix corals with anemones to begin with.> I just want to make sure I can provide a good home for a BTA before I get him but I would like to get him soon before my wife drives me crazy with her whining about a place for her clowns to try to make home. <Those pesky wives.  Depending on what species clowns you have, they may not go into the BTA.  On another note, if the clowns were tank bred, they may not go into any anemone as they were not raised with one, or do not know what they are. Your lighting should be sufficient for keeping a BTA.  Read here and linked files above for more info.  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm> Thanks as always for the sound advice! <You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)> Brandon
Re:  A BTA Question And pH  1/12/07
James, <Brandon> Thanks for the quick reply. <You're welcome.> To clarify, I calibrated the pen utilizing a two step calibration with 4.01 and 7.01 buffer solution. <For sea water, I would calibrate with a 7.01 and 10.01 solution.> I clean the Pen (Running it through fresh water) after each use and store it wet as per the instructions. <I would clean in distilled water.> I am not sure if it is just my imagination or if I remember reading through the FAQ a while back about false PH levels with RO/DI water that has not been at least buffered (baking soda added). Am I imagining things or did I read that somewhere? <Mmmm, pH meters/test kits read the hydrogen ion level in the water.  I don't see how not having a buffer could affect this.  If you use a dechloraminator in your make-up water, this can/will alter your pH reading.  I would suggest you present your questions to the manufacturer of the test pen.> My tank detects normal readings (8.2-8.4). One last question. I keep my Specific gravity at 1.023 +/- .001. Should I raise this now that I have added inverts and if I add the BTA? <No, not necessary.> As for the clowns taking to the BTA. I have warned my wife that her "Nemo Dream" might not come true with her false Percs and the BTA. She is willing to risk it and then replied, "If they do not take, aren't there shrimp and crabs you can buy that will live in it?" I just sigh! When I let her know that the BTA will move where it wants rather then where she wants (He will not jump for her like I do! :)  )  She is ok with it.. Plus if the clowns do not take to it, I might move into the BTA to escape my wife! LOL <Yes, there are some crabs/shrimp that live in anemones, but again, they have their preferences also.> Thanks again for all the fun/good/hard/life devoting work ya'll do, <You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)> Brandon

Bubble Tip Anemones... reading  12/12/06 Hi There,      I always find your sight really informative. Thank you! I would like to ask you a question about my bubble tip anemones. I have had him for ten days now. My Tank! - 150 Gallon - Ecosystem Mud Filter - Aqua Medic Protein Skimmer - Ozone Generator w/ monitor - 2 150w MH Lights left on for 8 or more hours a day - 1 60w moon light which I am going to change to a 40w. It look a bit bright to me. - Salinity 1.020 - Ph 8.2 - Calcium 450 - Phosphates - 2.0 but working on lowering it - ammonia, nitrates, nitrites are all 0. I have been feeding my anemone Micro-vert and Zooplayton. <Mmm... don't really eat these organisms...> He seemed to have gotten bigger since I last got. He only moved once and plopped himself on a nice piece of rock and seems to be happy there. The reason I am writing you is because I would like to try and find out why he was behaving the way he was this morning. Someone told me that as long as his tentacles are not falling off then he's fine and he doing what anemones do. <?> Last night I target feed him some Micro-vert. He folded up immediately and started eating and opened up again shortly there after. Well this morning my lights went on at 8 or 9 o'clock as usual. Instead of seeing him all puffy and nice, he was just the opposite. He looked and was changed 2 different ways. The first way looked like someone took a board and flattened all of his tentacles. There were all fallen and flat. <Not good> As I watched him further he then took the bottom part of his body and completely enclosed himself in.  Then he would open up again and look all flat. he keep doing those 2 things. He has since then opened up and has gotten back to normal. I am just wondering what was he doing? <What you state> Further more, I have a percula clown fish that wont go into the anemone. What can I do? <Umm, read> It has been 10 days now and he has not gone it? Why? What can I do to get him to go into the anemone? Look forward to hearing from you soon,     David <I look forward to your helping yourself, reading on WWM re Clown & Anemone Beh., BTA Sys., Dis... Maybe start here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/index.htm Bob Fenner>
Re: Bubble Tip Anemones... still not reading... Oh... maybe so!  - 12/12/06
<Hey David, JustinN with you today.> Thank you for assuming that I haven't read or did research before I contacted you. I have and have read many many  articles on BTA's splitting, roaming not eating etc, but none that stated what I had asked. <... if you had read on WWM where you were referred to... you would find such answers. RMF> I would not have contacted you otherwise.  In addition I have also read contradicting information about Percula's and BTA's. Some articles I read said that they are, some say no and some say it's a hit or miss. I have seem many articles on your site. I am sorry to have bothered you, for you really did not answer a thing for me, but sorry to have bothered you. <David, simply put, you were referred to where you were pointed because these questions have been asked, and answered quite literally dozens of times here. Just because its not in a main article, does not mean the information is not here. Use the Google search tool, and use the cached versions, to read through question and answer FAQ's. This is where the largest lump of information available through our site is found. Bob referred you to these places because these answers are readily available for you. As stated, you're feeding it improper foods, and it is likely responding in kind by displaying the deflation you see. As far as a clownfish hosting, it is very much a hit and miss thing. If it does happen, which it may never, it will take longer than 10 days of the BTA being in your tank in most cases.> FYI - My BTA is doing GREAT!!! Getting bigger by the week. <Good to hear. -JustinN>
Re: Bubble Tip Anemones
thanks Justin. I will keep searching. I will try the google feature. <No problems, David. Good luck to you! -JustinN>

Re:  Compatibility...Fin Nipping Re: Firefish & Anemone  6/12/06 Dear Mr. Bob Fenner / James (Salty Dog) <Rachel> Thanks for your reply. I really appreciate it. <You're welcome.> Ok the problem is this. I can never catch the 2 firefish I bought with all the live rock work I have in my tank but I do see them hiding in it. <This is the problem when no research is done on the livestock you wish to purchase.> Therefore I only can remove the big fish from my tank. From the Clarkii Clown, Hippo Tang, Banner fish and the Klunzinger's Wrasse what are the species I should remove to make a comfortable environment for the firefish. <I would start with the clown and the wrasse and see if that doesn't improve things.> Also I have an 80G tank so if I want to place a Bulb Anemone (Entacmaea quadricolor) in the tank what is the recommended watt per gallon. <I presume you mean lighting.  Would like to know the depth of the tank first.  I'm thinking it is a rather deep tank.> Also when you quarantine an Anemone do you need a sand bed or liverock and a clown fish because the LFS wants me to buy all of them together. <I can see buying the liverock if the anemone is anchored on it, but not sand and the clownfish.  Does the guy go by Capone or Bugsy?  Nothing is really needed in the QT for an anemone beside the rock he is anchored on and proper lighting with good water movement.  Do change 10% of the water on weekly basis.> Thanks, best regards, <You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)> Rachel
Re:  Compatibility...Fin Nipping Re: Firefish & Anemone
 6/12/06 Dear James (Salty Dog) <Rachel> I did research on the firefish before buying it but the reason was my LFS guys motivated/provoked me so much and they swore that the firefish would be fine with my fish in the tank. I know now that I shouldn't have trusted them for anything. <Believe me, firefish do not generally do well with aggressive eating fish.  They won't get enough food and are easily intimidated and will constantly retreat into the rockwork. In nature, a little different story as they form groups with each having his own "bolt hole" so to speak, to retreat to when threatened.  They hover above their shelter, feeding on passing planktonic food. You cannot duplicate this in a closed system without crashing the tank.> Thanks for the advice. My tank is about 24 inches deep, 43 inches long and 18 inches wide. So what do you recommend for the lighting? Do you think the bulb anemone is a good anemone to start off with or is carpet anemone (electric green) better? <The Bulb Anemone is one of the easier ones to keep, but no anemone is easy to keep for any length of time.  Forget the Carpet Anemones, your tank isn't large enough and intense lighting is required.  The Bulb Anemone will require about five watts of light per gallon.> So if the anemone is not anchored on to a live rock can I just put it in a tank alone without a sand bed or live rock and keep it just on the glass floor of the tank for two weeks with good water movement and lighting. <Problem here is that it will be difficult to remove the anemone from the glass, especially if you have little experience with them.  If the anemone is going into its own tank, quarantining will not be necessary, just do not add any fish for three weeks, and only fish that are anemone safe.> I think my LFS is ripping me off. <Buyer beware.> Thanks, best regards, <You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)> Rachel

Newbie! and the BTAnemone    4/14/06 I'm a novice-novice to this reef-tank phenomenon, but having great fun researching the whole experience.<yes indeed...very interesting STUFF>  I also have a great resource in my local aquarium store, where the staff has been extremely helpful in keeping me from hurting myself or other "critters".<excellent>  [I gave this to myself as a cancer-recovery present;  maybe not the best no-stress activity, but I'm just fascinated watching the activity.] I have a 12-gallon nano-cube (just the right size for beginner in a small condo) with standard set-up for lighting and filters;  light on a 10-hour timer. After what I called "growing water" for 2 weeks (including a live-sand bed and 2 live rocks) my water tested good for ammonia, nitrites and nitrates. Salinity was a bit high so I exchanged ~2 gallons for RO water the next week. [Week 3 & 4 water tests were very good.]<good> They first trusted me with 5 blue-legged hermit crabs and a brittle-star, which I have enjoyed immensely.  After another week I now have a bubble-tip anemone (no bubbles yet) that is rosy-pink with a greenish glow to the tentacles.  It's beautiful.  He wandered the entire tank last night [I got up to check on him periodically] which the staff said he would do until he found his spot.  I was very surprised at the distance he covered in a single day. He's now buried himself low, almost under an arm of the Fiji live-rock.  His tentacles were thick and puffed earlier this evening, but tonight I noticed most are now "shrunken" in size; color is still good.  The ones that aren't shrunken are those out in a more active current area of the tank. I haven't yet fed him;  the staff thought it could be a week or two before he'd eat due to transfer and the new tank.  I have frozen krill-shrimp at the ready. Is this a typical BTA response behaviour to new surrounding or might there be something wrong with him?  I suspect he'll continue to move (at least out from under the rock) later once he's acclimated, providing I don't lose him. Appreciate your help.<in my experience this is pretty normal....i would try feeding him within the next couple of days and keep a close eye on him. i would soak the krill/shrimp in iodine (or add a few drops) and then try to feed him> btw -- your site is an amazing resource, albeit overwhelming.  I spent two+ hours reading through all the BTA info I could find in your vast trove of information.  I'm in data-overload again. <thank you :), IanB> best regards Linda

Clown Fish... actually ignored BTA  11/20/05 Hi I have a tank which has one tank bred ocellaris and a BTA.  I have had them both in my tank for several months now and unfortunately the BTA is not doing so well.  Whenever I try to feed the BTA (with frozen brine shrimp) several things happen: <... don't live on frozen brine shrimp...> 1) The BTA just lets go of the food and it gets blown around the tank 2) The clown fish starts attacking my fingers as soon as I get anywhere near the anemone. 3) The clown fish will eat any food that goes anywhere near the anemone. I have tried doing all sorts of tricks to distract the clown fish, but he is a quick learner and is very skeptical of any attempts of me to go near the anemone.  I am afraid that if the anemone dies then it will very traumatic for him? <May be> What course of action would you recommend I take? Can I remove the anemone and leave the clown fish? Or would that be too stressful? Your help is appreciated. Regards Simon <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/bubbletipanemones.htm and on to BTA Systems, Feeding... Bob Fenner>

BTA conditions  10/2/05 Hey Crew, <Hey Bryan> Please tell me that I am on the right track.  I have been watching this bubble tip at the fish shop for more than 3 weeks.  After I determined that it was healthy and in excellent condition (for being in the ocean), I bought it.  While at the store it was attached very well to a piece of live rock (in a deep crack), in which I decided to buy the rock along with it; as to not upset the anemone from his happy home.<Good idea>  Unfortunately, I was unable to acclimate the anemone when introducing him to the main tank, because the rock rip a hole in the bag and the water was leaking.  On the good note, the fish shop's tanks and my tank are identical in temp and salinity.  It has been a while since introduction, and the picture shows his current condition.  I did attempt to feed it krill, and it works great.  I am determined to have this anemone thrive and hopefully split, so my question is simple; are my tank conditions right for this guy and what is better to feed it; ZooPlex, Krill, Mysis, or a combination of all?  I have read all the FAQ and articles, but nothing really lays it out.
<Anemones need only be feed once a week as they will produce much of their own food.  Anemones will snag anything that floats by in nature.  A small piece of fish can also be added to your food list which is fine.> 55 gal 4x96w power compact 2 powerheads (1-maxijet 900 & 1-maxijet 1200) Aqua C remora Skimmer <Good skimmer> 330 bio-wheel (will have a sump soon) Salinity - 1.021 <I'd stay in the 1.l023-024 range> pH - 8.4 KH - 280 NH3/NH4 - 0 NO2 - 0 NO3 - 10 (time for water change) <Will need to do weekly 10% changes> Calc - 475 <375-400 is plenty> Substrate - crushed coral Lots of live rock, about >50lbs Oh, and the Clarkii is currently leaving the BTA alone right now (very nice of him) Thanks in advance for your help.  <Your conditions/equipment are fine for maintaining the anemone. Do change 10% of the water weekly for improved health of all the animals your keeping.  James (Salty Dog)> Bryan

Responding To Your Response About My Reef Tank's Future - 09/26/05 Hi, Eric R <<Hello Carol>> Thank you for your quick response and to the success with my tank.  "Good luck" probably would have been a more appropriate response (ha, ha). <<On the contrary...leaving it to "luck" will only bring disappointment <G>.>> Now, I know where I stand with my tank.  I had a feeling about what you were going to say.  Now, I know for sure. <<Please be assured I'm not trying to discourage you from the hobby, quite the opposite, I hope to be able to help you to succeed.>> However, I am surprised about what you said about my water flow and somewhat surprised about the BTA. <<Unless you're providing about 20x your tank volume in random turbulent flow you could "likely" do with more.  As for the BTA, these animals are best kept in species-specific systems by experienced aquarists.  I also feel your lighting is a bit "anemic" for these critters.  Best to stick with animals that are more suitable to your system.>> But, I don't have time to explain myself.  Yesterday I was on here all morning.  I can't afford to do that again today. <<ok>> I'll get back to when I have more time-maybe next weekend.  I do have some questions to ask, but I want to think about them more before I ask them. <<I look forward to hearing from you.>> Thanks for your time and pointing me in the right direction.  I am beginning to see that bigger is better-- as far as maintaining a marine tank that is.  And that I am fulfilling my own pipe dream about having a marine tank without the issues of cost and space that a larger tank requires. Carol <<Careful planning, judicious stocking, and strict maintenance/husbandry practices are key to success with any marine system...doubly so with small systems.  Regards, EricR>>

Rose BTA removal 08/23/05 Hello to all, <Hi Kevin> I recently had a Rose BTA split and I am looking to remove the second BTA and sell it to my LFS. Currently it is residing on the underside of a rock. I cant take the rock out b/c the original BTA is on the same rock. What would be the least damaging way to coax this BTA off this rock. I have read using a powerhead, or depriving it of light can induce movement. Also i have read that massaging the base can sometimes cause it to detach. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks for all the information. Nice work. Kevin <All three of these can work... but I would just wait at this point... let the animal/s rest, regain size... and sell one if you'd like in a few weeks, months... Bob Fenner>

Troubles with a BTA Purchased For a Clownfish (7/24/05) Hello, <Hi. Steve Allen with you this evening.> I was feeling bad for my clown fish, because at night he would lay on my trach brain, so I went out and bought an anemone. <This is not a good reason to buy an anemone. Clowns do not need anemones or any other "host" to thrive, and there is nothing wrong with it "hosting" on the brain as long as it does no damage.> I ended up buying a bubble tip, because I was concerned about it moving around the tank. <BTAs are a bit easier than other anemones, all of which are difficult to keep.> I put it in the tank and for the first couple of days it was staying put, but now it is starting to move, not much, but enough that it is scaring me a little. <They move when they can't find a spot that is to their liking.> Is there anything you can recommend to keep him put, I was told to feed it, and that would most likely keep it there, is that true? <Not always. All anemones need a lot of light, and will move around trying to find the right amount of light and the right current. They also need exceptional water quality. Read about their needs on WWM. Also, there were good anemone articles in Tropical Fish Hobbyist and Aquarium Fish Magazine within the past year or so--check at your local library.> Also, I was wondering you're opinion on buying corals off the internet. Do you recommend buying from a local store or do you prefer internet ordering?  I'm on the fence, I like to see the item in person, but I also like the selection online.  What do you think? <Personally, I have done both and been satisfied. If you have a good LFS that sells healthy corals and doesn't sell impossible ones like Goniopora, consider supporting them. Reputable online vendors are good sources too. If you go to the Local/Internet Stores section of our Chat Forum, you can gather opinions from people who have shopped varians retailers.> Thank you so much..... <You're welcome. I hope this helps.>

New Clownfish Introduction 7/13/05 Dear WWM, My current setup includes a 30g SW tank with 30lbs of LR, and excellent water parameters. I had one true percula introduced first and has been doing quite well. It has been alone for about three weeks. Recently I purchased another, slightly larger true percula. After quarantine for 2 weeks, I introduced the new clown to the tank. For the first day or two, they seemed to get along great, and then this morning I saw them battling. The smaller, already established one was completely bullying the larger one. <Typical in such a small system> Now the larger is staying at the top and refuses to leave the top. I rearranged the rocks a bit to "disturb" the territoriality, but it did not seem to help. Is there anything I can do, or just let them figure out the dominance? <Uh, no... remove one of them, pronto... else it will likely be dead> On another note...I have a bubble tip anemone, that was dark tan when purchased. After a run in with the impeller, it has seemed to have recovered. It looks healthy, and even split recently, however the color is pale. Is there any way to encourage the proliferation of zooxanthellae/ regain pigmentation? <... please read on WWM re... this system is too small, unstable, new for this animal> Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks and keep up the great work John <Am trying to. Bob Fenner>

BTA losing color rapidly, misunderstanding of basic anemone biology, husbandry Hi, love the site. I have a 55 gallon tank with under gravel filter and had a BTA and Condy anemone thriving.   <Mmm, no... only appearing to do so> After I introduced a medium size maroon clown the BTA started rapidly losing its color and the bubbles on the tips have flattened out.  The BTA still eats and moves occasionally but is now completely white.  Is there anything I can do to restore his color/health?  I've been feeding him daily now and it doesn't seem to help. Thank you, Robert Kirkbride <... please read on WWM re... RMF>

Green bubble anemone -II WWM FAQ Crew; Thank you for you help on my bubble anemone. It has now re-opened but is still sitting under my pump unit. I know you're not supposed to move it so I hope it will eventually move on its own. You said that my bubble anemone is not the normal host for my clowns (2 percula & skunk which get along fine and have done so quite a while now) but whenever I go my local shop the are always swimming in and out of one. <Stuart, it doesn't mean they will not adopt the anemone, it is just a preference listing. Stuart, in the future, please, no abbreviations as "4" for "for", and please capitalize where needed. These have to be edited before they can be placed in the FAQ's. Thank you. James (Salty Dog)> 

Bubble Tip Anemone - Lighting & Moving Hello, <Hi there> I have a bubble tip anemone in my 55 gallon tank with 260 watts of lighting. I want to transfer the anemone into a fish only tank. The only problem is I am worried about the lighting. The tank is 65 gallons. Do I need 250 watts of light to sustain it in that tank? Or could it survive with about 208 watts of lighting just feeding it more like three times a week or something? <This should work> Please get back to me. Also the anemone has a torn pedal foot but can still grip rock and is growing huge. Anyway please get back to me thanks! You guys are a great help! Saurav <Do move the anemone underwater... that is, don't lift it into the air, but scoop it up in a large-enough container and move it with water over it. Bob Fenner> 

BTA husbandry, sources of enlightenment Hi guys you have been so helpful in the past and I hate to be a pest. I purchased. A BTA a few weeks ago from my LFS. It was so big and pretty in the tank at the store. When I got it home it stayed that way for a few days and planted its foot on the rock and my 2 Percs took right to it. It stayed in the front of the tank for about 5 days but it pulled it self under the rock. Is this normal? <Not atypical> It's half the size that it was when I got it. The clown fish are still playing in it. I heard that if the anemone was sick they would leave it alone. Is that true? <Happens> I haven't fed it since I've had it because I've never seen its mouth open. <Won't necessarily... don't wait for this> I have some peeled & deveined shrimp brought from the grocery store. Is this what they will eat? Anything else you would recommend feeding? <Yes... read: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/anemonefdgfaqs.htm and the linked files on BTAs> What do you mean when you say to soak the food in tank water before feeding? <Search on WWM re> I was a little worried about buying another anemone but the guy at the store said that the BT were easier to care for than other anemones. <Amongst the hardiest, especially the captive produced> I have tried other with no success. I have a 29 gallon tank that's been up for over a year. <This is a dangerously small volume...> Levels are great, ammonia up a little so I did 15% water change. I have 2 maxi jet 600 power heads, Red Sea Prizm protein skimmer, millennium 3000 hang on filter, and I have an R/O/ DI for water. Lights are Current Fluorescent Compact Dual 50/50 on timer for 10 hours. Is this enough light? <Please read... http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/index.htm scroll down to the Actinarians...> Should I have both bulbs on at the same time? They are 65Watts a piece. I have a 55 gallon tank that's in the process of cycling. It has a Eheim Pro II canister filter, 2 1200 maxi jet power heads, 1 Zoomed 228 power head, Aqua C Remora skimmer with Mag drive as your site suggested. My light for this tank is pretty much the same as on the other just a different brand - Coralife compact fluorescent. Will this set up be ok for my anemone? I really want to keep this anemone alive. What do you recommend? Do I need more current? After a few days in the front the anemone moved over the rock and to the back of the tank still hiding under some rock. Is that normal? Please help. Any info would be so great.  Heather <Heather... stop! Read my friend... make up your own mind. Bob Fenner>

Urgent Bulb Anemone Question and others I have a 125 Tank with 576w pc lighting (4 dual daylight and 2 dual actinic). Water Params: 0 Nitrates 0 Nitrites pH 8.5 <A bit high> Temp 76 - 77 Daily Inhabitants: Yellow Tang 2 Ocellaris Clowns 6 Small Green Reef Chromis 1 Lawnmower Blenny 1 Rose BTA Multiple Zoanthids & Shrooms (Small) And a couple of Leathers (Toadstool & Finger) I read through and usually it is just "do not worry it's just roaming the tank looking for a home". <What? Your anemone? It should NOT roam about> but... Here is the situation. about a month ago I moved from a 55 gallon (added More CURED rock, the lawnmower blenny) to the 125 which had been running with a sand substrate, 50lbs Rock and the Chromis for about a month. We just put the bulb anemone in about 4-5 days ago and for the first few days he wandered as expected and I was just moving leathers when I would think he was situated in his spot. Yesterday he kind of quit roaming and is now just "all over the place" he is refusing to anchor his foot and I have found him upside down a couple of times. <Not good... gets stung by your other cnidarians... upsets them...> The tentacles appear inflated nicely but it worries me that he is not settling on his foot. I have cut some of the powerheads off because they were just blowing him around and around. Should I be worried? <Yes> How much longer should I give it before I try something else such as secluding him for flow with more rocks (i.e. creating a calmer setting in the aquarium or removal)? <I would "tie that kangaroo down sport"... place some sort of restraint over the animal in an area with rock where you want it to stay... or move it to other circumstances... another system> He appears healthy, but I believe if he were to decline that my reaction time could be too slow to prevent harm to other inhabitants. <You are wise here> If I keep the powerheads off like they are then I do not believe I will have enough flow to make him happy and even if he settles now, will he likely move and do all of this again when I turn the heads back on? I do not want to lose him or agitate him to death, so what do I do? <See the above... do NOT let this animal roam about. Bob Fenner>

Green bubble tipped anemone growth Howdy and seasons greetings to y'all, <Thanks, you too!>      First of all let me thank you for the site. I have learned so much from it. It's always the first place I look when I have a question.
<No problem, I'm glad to help out around here.  Loads of info, I read the archives frequently myself> On to my issues. I have a green bubble tipped anemone that was one of the early purchases once my tank was ready to add live stock. <Nice, anemones are awesome> It has been up since The first of July. I have a 75 gallon tank with about 100 #s of live rock and about 140 #s of live sand. I have a separate sump, with a Euroreef C-6 protein skimmer, which holds between 15 and 20 gallons.  The sump flows into a refugium with macro algae, live rock and live sand that is also between 15 and 20 gallons. I have a U.V sterilizer I run about once a month or so about a week at a time. (I mainly got it because of an ick outbreak I had). My lighting is 6 VHO 46.5" bulbs 3 actinic blue and 3 actinic white. They come on and go off in pairs throughout the day about 9 hours total anymore and the algae goes nuts.  
<Might want to control those organics better, then - light should not create algae>
 First 2 blue then a blue and white then the last 2 whites and they go off in the reverse order. (to kind of simulate the day) My water has always been good with the exception of my nitrates which I have been fighting recently it stays around 15 (it has been higher but not by much and not now that I am really watching it) I have added a bag of nitrate sponge rocks to try to help along with sizeable water changes 4 days in a row. I normally do about 10 gallons a week. <Hmm...do you have a DSB?  Skim well?  Might want to up the water change %, chemical absorbers for nitrate are just temporary fixes for a larger problem> Okay now for my question. My anemone does not seem to grow. There are days it seems big and days it is very compact. I understand it is easy to confuse its stretching for growth. Some days it looks great other days just okay. It never looks like the melting ice cream cone and its color has not been bleached. It's still caramel with the green tips. I feed it every other day either Mysis shrimp or plankton after feeding my fish and shrimp because they tend to steal its food if I try to feed it first. I think it's being fed enough from what I have read but I see no significant growth. (arrrgh!) How big should these get and how fast should they grow? When I purchased it I purchased the 2 black and white clowns that were hosting it at the time and once being introduced into the tank, want nothing to do with it. Is this normal? The anemone was in the same spot forever then when I noticed my nitrate issue it was moving around but has now settled down again. I know this may sound confusing but if you can decipher through it any help would be greatly appreciated! <Take out an actinic bulb for another daylight, firstly.  Secondly, how deep in the water is it?  Does it receive decent flow?  Make certain it gets fed a couple of times a week, as well.  If need be, shoo everything away until it's fully ingested the food.  This should get the little guy growing...I fed mine 3 times a week and it doubled in size in a few months.  Remember to feed very small (1\4") bits> Thanks…Butch <Good luck! M. Maddox>

Can I keep a BTA in this setup? I have a 40gal bdr tank (36x18x16) with PC 2x96 light fixture, reef ready CPR BakPak, appx 60 lbs live rock, 20-30lbs live sand.... and the following corals: zoanthids - about 14 sets but mostly small frags with 20 or less polyps colt coral finger leather coral - and 15 of her babies but they are soon to go to the pet store or friends, Turbinaria coral, pagoda cup coral, trumpet/candy cane coral (small frag of about 10 heads), yellow leather toad (about 3 1/2 inches across and growing), pincushion looking toad - about 5 inches across, small pink toad - 2 inches, 2 toad frags about an inch each, large glove polyp rock -growing out of control, small glove polyp rock, about 30+ mushrooms daisy polyps (small frag of about 20), brown button polyps - 4 clumps Large Hair algae rock (for my pods - they love it and it has not spread anywhere else in tank for over a year), large green star polyp rock - appx 12inches across, hammer coral frag (2 heads - small) <Wow! When all of those animals start growing, you are going to have quite a crowded tank!  I would start thinking right now about thinning out!> As you can imagine it is all growing nicely but soon will be on top of each other. <Yup, they will.  There is also the issue of chemical competition (allelopathy) which is likely to become a problem with so many soft corals.> I love the zoos and my toads.. if I run Purigen will they coexist together ALONG with a BTA.  My friends BTA just split again and she wants to give me one but I want to make sure it will be ok in my tank.  <You have hit the primary issue on the head.  No chemical media will sufficiently control all of the allelopathic chemicals produced by corals. That is not to say that you will definitely have problems, but they are likely.  I would not consider adding the anemone unless you significantly reduce the number of corals.  In most cases, I don't recommend that anemones and corals be kept together at all (though most people do so).> Are my lights strong enough?  my tank is about 14" deep after the sand bed and it would go near the top. <Yes, but barely, and only if they are within a few inches of the water.  Regular feeding will help compensate for the lower light.> Are there any corals it will clash with?  I have 1 tomato clown, one citron and a mandarin (that I order copepods for monthly and my tank is swarming with amphipods and Mysid however I think they are to fast for him).  anyway, any info regarding the BTA would be appreciated! I would love to take it but only if it will be ok in my tank.  <The anemone will sting most corals and may suffer from the interaction itself.  Slow moving fish like your citron goby and Mandarin are at significant risk of being eaten by the anemone.  All things considered, I would strongly recommend that you avoid the anemone.  If you really want the anemone, you will have to give up the listed fish and drastically reduce the number of corals.  Best Regards.  AdamC.>

Artificial Bubble Tip Anemone Propagation Hey guys, <Hello John> I've got a question for you regarding bubble tip anemone propagation. I read most or all of the FAQ's on your site about cutting the anemones to divide them. Cutting one completely in half sounds kind of harsh, and also seems risky. I was wondering if any one has tried making a small cut on the edge of the oral disk with any success. I read about making an incision down the side of the anemone, from the oral disk to where the pedal disk begins, but the description was rather vague to me. Should the cut be deep, or only superficial? <Deep> What do you think would happen if you made a small cut on the edge of the oral disk with some scissors or meat shears? <Better to use a razor blade or such... much cleaner cuts> To give some background info, I tried the feeding every three days for two weeks before a water change thing and it worked fine. I ended up with six anemones from one. I'm down to two now, one ended up in the sump after wandering in the aquarium for a while, and I gave the others away before a move. I want to try to get them to split again, but the heavy feeding contributes to hair algae, which I have had problems with in the past, but not since I moved. I cleaned it from the live rock with a toothbrush while I had it out of the tank, and none has popped up so far (3 months since the move). Anyways, I would appreciate more detailed info about artificially propagating them. Any help will be gladly received. Thanks, John Jordan <Not much more to say... there is substantial anecdotal input from folks on BB's (ReefCentral, Reefs.org...) re how often, at what size... Bob Fenner>

OH NO! PLEASE TELL ME MY ANEMONE DID NOT EAT THIS $150 FISH! I just purchased an absolutely beautiful geometric pygmy Hawkfish. As you know, it is a rare fish and commands big bucks. I watched it laying under the rockwork yesterday after acclimation, and after a while it slowly started to move underneath all of the rocks. The next day (today), I didn't see it under any of the rocks. I fed the other fish hoping the smell might draw it's attention. It didn't show. Then, to my horror, my rose bulb anemone starting egesting something reddish/brown in color. It was kind of stringy, but had a leather look. Kind of what a fish looks like after you skin them to cook them. Problem is, I haven't fed my anemone in over a week. I was under the impression that Entacmaea quadricolor ate shrimp, and didn't care for fish. <Umm> Could it have eaten my Hawkfish that might have mistakenly jumped into the anemone? <Yes> Or are Hawkfish aware enough of an anemone to know to avoid it? <Not all species, individuals... Let's hope yours is still hiding somewhere... not consumed, jumped out... Bob Fenner> Thanks!
I just have to ask one more thing I should have asked before: would the anemone egest fish skin, or consume the whole fish? <Will egest whatever is not edible... including skin, skeleton...> The book I read that mentioned bulb anemones liking krill over fish also mentioned that the only things egested are parts that are unusable, like chitin. I wouldn't even be worried if I hadn't seen the anemone egesting. Is it possible that it could have been something else, or would it have to have been a food item? I know I'm stretching here, but I just can't believe it. I just thought the fish would know to avoid the anemone, but I fear the worst. Man, I feel stupid... <Happens. Bob Fenner>

Keeping a bulb anemone with VHO lighting... will it work? Hello, <How goes it, Michael here today...and no tests (in school) for a week!> I have a 75 gallon reef (18" deep), that's approx 3 months old, and doing very well.  <Glad to hear it> Water levels are all in the ideal range <Ideal being pH of ~8.3, 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, and less than 5 ppm nitrates, I hope>, and the coralline algae growth is phenomenal.  <Excellent.  My tank is fried with light to the point where mine will only grow in the shadows> I have not added any corals yet, but I have some zoanthids and Palythoa that have sprung from my live rock. <Cool> The tank also houses 8 fish (all small reef safe species). I have the ballast capacity and space in my hood to run up to eight 46 ?"  VHO lamps. Right now I have four 36" VHO URI super actinics, and four 46 ?" URI actinic whites. The tubes are 2 inches above the water surface, and 14 inches above the surface of the sandbed. I run the smaller actinics just to keep my color rendering from being too blue.  <The PAR of actinics is virtually next to nothing for anemones> My question stems around my wife's desire to add an anemone and clown fish to this tank. <Really neat relationship to observe> With the ability to run up to 880 watts of VHO lighting, I'm assuming I can keep one of the easier species like a bulb anemone, but I wanted your opinion, as well as a recommendation on whether I should continue running a 50/50 blend of white to actinic, or should I cut down the number of actinics and add more full spectrum to make the anemone (and future SPS additions) happy?  Give me a good ratio. Aesthetics take a back seat to good husbandry, so if I need to be running 100% full spectrum, I'm all for it, so give me your best recommendation.  <If you plan on running eight bulbs, I would keep only two actinic, and run the rest daylight, preferably from the 5.5k-10k range for anemones> Also, is there any real benefit for anemones and SPS to switching the full spectrum lamps to 10K Aquasuns, instead of the 12K actinic whites?  <What most people don't as anything over 10k is going to give you slower growth rates, because the PAR is lower than bulbs from 5.5k-10k range.  The sun puts out 5.5k light, so that is what most animals will do well\best at.  This doesn't mean that other temperatures can't be used, it just means the growth rates won't be as good.  As I stated, I recommend between 5.5k and 10k for anemones.  SPS will do fine all the way to 20k.  If you do try your hand at some SPS, be sure to place them high up in the aquarium.  You may have a lot of wattage, but the water penetration of fluorescents is still rather weak> Thanks you for a great forum, and for the advice, <Anytime, glad to help out here> Robert Moore <M. Maddox>

Rose bulb anemone I have had a rose bulb anemone for about 2 months now in my 15 gallon eclipse. I have taken out the light that was in the hood and replaced it with an 18 inch 96 watt compact fluorescent  lamp. I have the original eclipse pump and an extra one for more current. I keep the light on for 10 hours and feed it once a day with about four frozen krill.  <Might want to increase the photoperiod by an hour or so.  Also, make sure not to feed the anemone large chunks, mince them into pieces about 1\4th inch in size> Over the last two months my anemone has lost its bubble tips and they have become long and I think that it is not as bright in color as it used to. I have tried increasing the amount of food, but it stops taking it after four krill. What can I do to return it back to its health and replenish its bulbs? <Annoyingly enough, this is very common in BTA's, and there seems to be no apparent reason for why they lose their bubbles and sometimes change color.  It doesn't seem to have anything to do with food, or lighting. <<Does have a great deal to do with a lack of circulation/current. RMF>>  My water quality seems to have an impact on my BTA's bubbles (when I do frequent water changes it seems to bubble more) and possibly with water current.  Mine doesn't bubble nearly as much as it used to either, though.  It's  not a sign of an unhealthy animal, so I wouldn't worry too much about it> Sincerely,                 John Sorkness <M. Maddox>

Rose BTA/Nitrate Hi there Mr. Calfo, <cheers, my friend> Harvey & Marilyn here tonight with a question for you.  We met recently at the SCMAS of Orange Co., CA.  Our questions pertains to our beautiful Rose BTA.  We've noticed: 1)  the BTA releasing brown stringy matter which we assume is waste product and is normal.   <yes... likely so, no worries> 2)  when the anemone stretches and the oral disc is lifted up, we noticed a lot of dark brown matter  throughout the column and the underside of the oral disc.  Is this normal?   <it does not sound suspect or unusual... perhaps from regular feedings - all good> We were feeding the anemone on a daily basis little bits of shrimp or squid or Mysis.   <ah, yes... excellent> Since the releasing of waste products and all this brown matter in the column etc., we've cut back on the feeding to 2X a week hoping maybe the anemone can expel the accumulated waste?   <flawed logic, but still OK if you don't want the anemone to grow as well/fast> Is this OK or are we starving the poor thing?   <not starving... although I like to see/recommend at least 3 feedings weekly (small)> 3)  The anemone is about 5 - 6" oval shape, with one side resembling a figure 8 and where the indentation is,  I'd say about  10 - 12 new tentacles have sprouted.  However, we've noticed 2 of the older tentacles have curled up into a ball and one seems to have curled around some food, but upon checking it out, it seems like it might be some mesenterial filaments (white) and not removable.  What is causing the tentacle to shrink and curl?   <the drift from a neighboring coral or anemone upstream from it - a defensive posture> Also, some of the other tentacles seems to have gone crooked at the tips?!    I haven't seen any bulbous tips for a while and the tentacles have lengthened to at least 3 - 4"!   <happens often for reason not clear to us yet. Still not a problem> Please tell us what's going on with our beautiful Rose BTA. Other than what was mentioned above, the BTA seems to be doing OK since it grew from an  original 2" to 5-6" now.  Thank you for your help in figuring out what's going on with our anemone. <sounds like good care and a healthy anemone> Oh, our tank parameters are:  60 gals with 100 lbs. LR, 70 lbs LS, CA 410, dKH 9.6, Alk 3.43, NO2 0, NO3 15 - 20, NH3 0,  SG 1.025.  Have been doing weekly water changes of 15 to 20% to try and knock the NO3 down but it only goes down to 10, never lower  and then back up again - can't seem to figure what's going on here,   <consider a DSB refugium with a minimum of 4" of oolitic sand> We are utilizing a CPR Bak Pak 2R skimmer and getting more foam then before, but can only get l/2 to 3/4 cupful per week.  Again, thank you for your help and advice.  Much appreciated. Harvey & Marilyn <great to hear from you! best of luck, Anthony>

Lighting a BTA 9/30/04 I am thinking about purchasing a Aqualight Pro 24" lighting fixture (1 - 150watt HQI Metal Halide, 2 - 65watt Actinic PC's and 2 - 1watt Moon Lights) for my 29 gallon tank (30" X 12" X 18").  I keep an RTBA in the tank along with several corals.  Will this fixture be ok on this tank or will it be too much light?  Thanks for your input. Jeff <it sounds right on par to me with the oft-tossed about "rule" of 5 watts per gallon (of daylight) for popular zooxanthellate reef invertebrates. The actinics don't count in "the rule" BTW... they are mostly aesthetic - enjoy :) Anthony>

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