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willjames37
08/21/2017, 12:13 PM
I'm planning a reef tank using a 32g Biocube, and I definitely want a pair of ocellaris clownfish and a few LPS corals to begin. I've done many hours of research and will continue to do more to give my little reef the best chance. At first I thought anemone care would be too difficult, so I thought that the clownfish might take to a coral instead. But then I read that they can bother the coral too much and kill it. The relationship between clownfish and anemones is incredible to me, and I'd really like to recreate it. I want to give my clownfish that natural experience. Just so you know, I will be using upgraded lighting suitable for all corals/anemones.

My first issue is choosing an anemone. Bulb anemones seem to be the easiest to care for, and would also fit nicely in my tank, but I really don't like the look. I like sebae anemones, but I'm not sure it would fit comfortably in my tank, and I'm worried about my ability to care for one. I've done a great job with all of my animals so far, and I'm confident I could keep water parameters in check, but the "care level: difficult/expert" thing makes me nervous. I'm really cautious with my animals and it would break my heart to accidentally kill one, so I'd really appreciate some input.

My other question is, if I do get an anemone, what order should I put the different animals into the tank? I don't want the anemone/clownfish to bother the corals or the corals to bother the anemone while it's acclimating and choosing a spot. So is there a specific order they should go in that would give me the best chance of success?

humphreyhh
08/21/2017, 12:38 PM
Necessities for keeping anemone:
1. Water testing kit, measurements,
2. Quality Lighting equipment
3. Large tank size (yours is OK for most common anemones),
4. Matured and cycled tank water (6 month to 1 year of running, you can start with keeping Clownfish, they are easy to take care of)
5. live rock and sand bed (sebae Anemone/long tentacle Anemone/haddoni carpet Anemone need deep sand bed; bta/condy/gigantic carpet/mag anemone need rock).
6. Protein skimmer (if tank gets well/fully stocked)

Add animals in the order when you have all the necessities:
1. Fish
2. Anemone
3. Coral (after Anemone choose a spot to attach.
(1 and 2 can switch if you don't mind an empty running tank for a couple of months before you add anemone)

Good luck!

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Lance M.
08/21/2017, 01:26 PM
I'm planning a reef tank using a 32g Biocube, and I definitely want a pair of ocellaris clownfish and a few LPS corals to begin. I've done many hours of research and will continue to do more to give my little reef the best chance. At first I thought anemone care would be too difficult, so I thought that the clownfish might take to a coral instead. But then I read that they can bother the coral too much and kill it. The relationship between clownfish and anemones is incredible to me, and I'd really like to recreate it. I want to give my clownfish that natural experience. Just so you know, I will be using upgraded lighting suitable for all corals/anemones.

Just be aware the clowns may have nothing to do with the anemone or may go to it instantaneously. Picking a natural host anemone would potentially help.

My first issue is choosing an anemone. Bulb anemones seem to be the easiest to care for, and would also fit nicely in my tank, but I really don't like the look. I like sebae anemones, but I'm not sure it would fit comfortably in my tank, and I'm worried about my ability to care for one. I've done a great job with all of my animals so far, and I'm confident I could keep water parameters in check, but the "care level: difficult/expert" thing makes me nervous. I'm really cautious with my animals and it would break my heart to accidentally kill one, so I'd really appreciate some input.


Bta's seem to be the most commonly available of the hosting anemones and aquacultured bta's are usually available giving potentially a better chance at success in keeping anemones.

Sebae's, at least in my opinion, are difficult to find healthy. Most all I have ever seen at a lfs are bleached. They would be a good choice if you can find a healthy specimen. If you do not target feed them, they should grow relatively slowly and be ok in your size tank.

Another aspect in choosing a host anemone is where you want it to be. Bta's typically go for the rockwork and can be kept in the upper levels of the tank. Sebae's typcially go for the rock/sand interface low in the tank. LTA's will also stay in the rock/sand area as long as receiving adequate lighting.

Another thing to research would be to learn malu vs crispa, both commonly labeled as sebae.

My other question is, if I do get an anemone, what order should I put the different animals into the tank? I don't want the anemone/clownfish to bother the corals or the corals to bother the anemone while it's acclimating and choosing a spot. So is there a specific order they should go in that would give me the best chance of success?

humphreyhh's order would be ideal; however, people typically add the fish and coral first before the tank has been established long enough for an anemone. It would be fine to add the anemone last as long as you know were it would likely position itself and move your corals based on where the anemone wants to go.

Ryan Darilek
08/21/2017, 07:55 PM
I have the BC32 as well and have it similar to what you're wanting to do I believe. Is went with a BTA :)
I agree with the above... But would add that lighting is pretty important. If you have the stock lights on your BC32 still, you will need to feed your nem regularly to keep it healthy. https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20170822/c6e4f5c2e70a8be7fee6410d6f24eb15.jpg

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slyseekr
08/23/2017, 02:44 PM
I would add that water flow is often an under-looked condition when it comes to anemone care. Anemones will move if they're not happy with the flow, regardless of lighting.

Another over-looked aspect of keeping them happy is understanding where they want to plant their foot. Placement is what really led me to pick a Malu for my host anemone, I wanted my clowns to stay lower in the water column, and didn't want the anemone to wander around the rocks, potentially stinging corals.

Re: Sebaes/Malus. I think they're actually a lot easier to care for than most, but unfortunately, most of them just do not ship well and are in terrible condition by the time they reach the LFS. The expert-level requirements for keeping one usually come from the amount of care you need to give to one that has bleached. If you can find a healthy one that hasn't expelled all it's Zooxanthellae algae, and provide it with an appropriate spot with good water quality, they can be easier to keep than BTAs. (Just my opinion!)