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FAQs on Carpet Anemone Environmental Disease/Health

FAQs on: Carpet Anemone Disease 1,
FAQs on Carpet Anemone Disease by Category: Diagnosing, Nutritional, Social (Allelopathy), Trauma, Pathogenic (Infectious, Parasitic, Viral) Predatory/Pest, Treatments   
Carpet Anemone Reproduction,

Related Articles: Carpet Anemones, Stichodactyla spp., Use in Marine Aquariums by Bob Fenner, Carpet Anemones, big, beautiful and deadly by Mike Maddox, Bubble Tip Anemones, Tropical Atlantic Anemones, Anemones, Colored/Dyed AnemonesCnidarians, Marine Light, & Lighting

Related FAQs: Carpet Anemones 1, Carpet Anemones 2, Carpet Anemone Identification, Carpet Anemone Behavior, Carpet Anemone Compatibility, Carpet Anemone Selection, Carpet Anemone Systems, Carpet Anemone Feeding, Carpet Anemone Reproduction,

... where does it live? Is there sufficient chemical nutrient base to support photosynthesis? I.e. measurable (but not excessive) NO3, HPO4?

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

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Haddoni anemone won't stay attached.      11/16/19
Hello, I have had it for over a year. When I first got it about 1 1/2" , now about 6" . It is in 2 year old, 65g tank with a 3" saddleback, coral beauty and Tomini tang.
<I'm surprised this anemone hasn't eaten the last two>
water 1.026 ph 8.2 dkh 9-10 m 1360 cal 380 . Lightning hydra 26's 4 t5's.
600gph w/wave makers. It has great color on its flesh, light pink and light to dark green tentacles. It appetite is great.
<What and how often do you feed this Actinarian?>
It stands up when the lights come on as the lights intensify it flattens or cones.
<... something odd here>
It won't stay attached to bare, soft or course substrates.
<Umm; see Mike Maddox's piece here:
and my coverage; linked at the bottom>
Currently it has attached to a small peace of egg crate.
<READ now; this is not a natural, useful attachment>
If i try to add sand around it foot it lets go and lays on top w/stem down but its foot curved so it doesn't touch sand. I have looked at its foot and don't see anything obvious wrong. It has attached to snail shells, it let them go when i cleared a 12" * 12" bare spot ( sand bed 6" ). It partially attached to bare spot. The clown is sometimes aggressive rubbing on it so i have the clown separated (clown pissed).
If clown is in with the anemone it won't stay attached.
<They may be incompatible. I'd cover the anemone with an inverted "strawberry" basket; or remove the clown to elsewhere>
? Mangrove mud on top of bare glass ? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I have tried lots of things without any real success. It had moved around and then stayed in the same place. This is where I bared the bottom.
<The reading. Write back if you aren't clear here. Bob Fenner>

Help with Carpet Anemone problem     11/1/19
Hello Bob,
We met many years ago in Sacramento through Kim Hanks.
<Oh! Hope to see you and her this weekend. Am headed up tomorrow/Sat. to present to both the marine and freshwater clubs there>
I've always enjoyed your talks and your book on anemones.
I've been a lucky and dedicated carpet anemone fan for over 20 years.
<Neat animals; well worth the work>
My tank has been running continuously for that time. About 5 years ago I lost my mertensii carpet after almost 20 years due to a power outage while I was on vacation. I replaced with a beautiful blue carpet I was told was a gigantic, but due to the fact that it sometimes pulls itself under the gravel completely I am leaning towards it being a Haddoni.
<Could be; these Stichodactyla species can be hard to discern. Usually the radiating lines from Haddon's are definitive>
I had been keeping the Haddoni in my tank successfully for the past 5 years. Its primarily an anemone tank, with a good Zoanthid polyp colony. I have a Clarks clown a fire angel and a yellow tang in my 75 gallon tank. I use 2 2100g per hour current USA powerheads on surge or wave settings for circulation. I run 3 little fishes carbon in a hot magnum filter, and a remora c protein skimmer.
<Good mix of filtration, circulation...>
I do a 15% h20 change about once every month or two typically. I feed once per day, 6 days a week two frozen prepared foods which fish and polyps consume in about 2 min.s. I typically feed my anemone directly a small sea scallop twice a week to encourage growth. All was well in the tank. About 5 months ago I decided to try the new Current USA LEDs and bought two strips after my 6 bulb t5 54 w system burned up.. Everything seemed ok for a while but after a couple months, my anemone started to move around after being in one place for a while. I also noticed that my zoanthids were not as open and bright as before. It didn’t dawn on me that it might be the lights for some time. I increased water changes, changed food and played around with current a bit to see if things might improve.
My anemone was sticky and took food with no issues and continued to be large and otherwise appeared healthy other than the migration. But I know a moving anemone is an unhappy one. It finally settled in the dead center of the tank. I took the opportunity to put some live rock around him buried in the sand to try and keep him in one place.
<Good move>
About three weeks back I noticed despite finally settling in one spot, its mouth was starting to invert. In frustration, I continued weekly 10% h2o changes and kept researching. Last week I was reading up on the LED lighting and decided that my system was not producing powerful enough light for the SPS or Anemone and that was causing all the issues.
<Could be the photo strength, even just the mix of spectra... being deficient>
I have since purchased an 8 bulb t5 set up which produced 450 w of lighting. All other factors in the tank remain the same. Its been about a week now and the anemone shows some signs of improvement but his mouth is still inverted. Still large, still sticky, no longer moving around, but inverted mouth. I have not tried to feed while in this condition concerned it might do harm.
<Well; a week is not much time.>
I know anemones react slowly and recover slowly as well. Are there any other recommendations you can suggest to help with the inverted mouth now that its been going on so long?
<Mmm; I might try adding both iodide/iodate solution and a vitamin/HUFA mix directly to the water. SeaChem makes good brands of both; though there are other manufacturers.>
Any suggestions on how long it might take to know if recovery is going to happen or if I have a terminal case?
<Weeks likely>
Appreciate the guidance as I do cherish the critter and hope to keep him around for my lifetime.
Brad Becker
408-859-XXXX (please note despite the 408 area code I am on east coast time)
<Thank you for sharing. Hope to see you Sat. in Sacto. Bob Fenner>
Re: Help with Carpet Anemone problem     11/1/19

Thanks for this but I live in Atlanta. Can you forward my message on to Bob? Thank you.
<Ah yes; hence the ref. to East coast time. Cheers Brad. BobF>
Re: Help with Carpet Anemone problem     11/1/19

Thanks Bob, I see the inline answers below. Ill try the iodine. Appreciate your fast reply.
<Do please keep me/us informed of your observations, actions. BobF>

Carpet Nem looking pale      12/2/14
Hello everyone! I hesitate to send too many questions your way, but sometimes I have no other choice.
I have talked to numerous people, and you know how that goes!
<Yes... five Megs of pix...>
I bought a "mini" carpet anemone July 2013. It has done fantastically, growing larger than the span of my hand.
Four days ago, I noticed it wasn't opening fully AND it appeared pale.
<I see this in your too-large pix>
Today, four days later, it still looks pale, is not opening and I am freaking out.
I've been feeding it small pieces of clam. To my surprise, the Tang stole the clam! I tried again, and did notice the nem is still sticky, so maybe the Tang was just lucky.
The only thing I have done differently ( and stopped!) was adding a 2 part Alk/Calcium supplement, (Reef Fusion 1&2)
I only dosed 2 days, because after testing, I realized the Alk rose from 8.4 to 9.3! And the Calcium shot up from 380 to 480!!!!! Stupid me, I didn't test BEFORE dosing and I know that was a mistake.
<Yes... you NEED to do this addition more gradually AND through water changes
... in pre-made, pre-supplemented new water>
So, the question is, do you think this fluctuation caused my carpet nem to expel its Zooxanthellae?
<Some; yes>
AND, should I continue to feed, AND will it survive my mistake?
<Yes and hopefully>
Thanks so much for your expertise!
<Glad to share. Bob Fenner>


Re: Carpet Nem looking pale      12/2/14
is this pic better Bob?
<Fab! Thank you Pam. B>


Anemone Mouth is "Inside-Out" - 10/15/06 First of all thank you for all the valuable information you have provided on this website. <<A collective effort...you are quite welcome>> I have recently purchased a Stichodactyla haddoni approximately 9" diameter at full extension. <<Do have a read here and among the linked files at the top of the page: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/cnidaria/anthozoa/anemones.htm>> First of all my tank is a 90 gallon, lighting provided by dual 150HQI 10,000K dual 110W actinic PC and moon lighting. <<Sounds good>> Temp is 77-79, SG 1.025, NH3-0, NO2-0, NO3-0 or not detectable, Calcium 410ppm. <<Good again>> Approximately 120lbs of live rock and 3" sand bed. <<Mmm, would recommend a bit less rock and more open substrate with an inch or two more depth for this species>> Flow is provided by the 1200GPH return pump corrected to 700GPH and dual outlets, also a SEIO 1500GPH.  Inhabitants include: -Bubble Coral Medium-Small Size -Green Star Polyps -Large Montipora capricornis -A few SPS frags Acropora mostly -A few various frags -Small bright green candy cane <<Am sure you are aware of our feelings re mixing sessile and motile invertebrates??? I have been careful to allow appropriate distance between all corals and allowing growing room. <<One can hope...>> Fish include: -Pair of Percula Misbars -Atlantic Blue Tang <<The tank is too small for this fish>> -Solar Rentis Wrasse <<...?  Solorensis Wrasse?>> -Blue Spot Goby -Two Cleaner Shrimps Filtration is provided by a 160 (at least can't remember exact) gallon capacity Euro-Reef skimmer and a reverse light cycle Chaetomorpha refugium. <<Great skimmer, great macro-algae/application>> All water is RO/DI and weekly 10% water changes.  Needless to say I am aware of the high demands of an anemone and did quite a bit of research however this has been a specimen I have been searching for. <<Then you are aware they are best kept in species/specimen specific systems>> The tank is approximately 9 months old and has been very stable with no deaths after initial cycling except for the occasional overturned snail. <<Yet still a bit "young" for an anemone system>> This is not my first tank though I am no professional aquarist <<Me neither <grin> >> I do however care to learn as much about an animal as I can prior to purchase and now I am trying to figure out a way to care for this animal given its recent behavior. <<I see>> I have been reading about the problem I have and have found conflicting information regarding it. <<Ah yes...is a hobby based on much "opinion">> Apparently some sources say that when an Anemone exposes its insides so to speak it is near death likely caused by poor acclimation out of the ocean and constant transport. <<Not uncommon>> This makes sense for me, I have had this anemone for 6 days and it was transshipped from the ocean probably the week before that or less. <<Likely a stressed animal then, yes>> However I read some posts by Anthony on this website and his concern for problems similar to this were not this serious. <<Perhaps differences in circumstance/symptoms>> I am wondering is there anything I can do.  The anemone will eat PE Mysis if I feed it however I feel like feeding is not necessary more than once a week from what I have read. <<A couple "light" feedings a week would be fine>> The anemone is still sticky to touch but not as sticky as when I purchased. <<Not always symptomatic of something bad as long as the anemone can still capture/each foodstuffs>> He deflates at night and re-inflates, as it gets closer to lights on in the morning staying inflated throughout the day.  Often it is night when I see this inside out mouth behavior, you can almost see what resembles 'guts' bulging out of the mouth. <<Mmm...at this point/based on your previous info I think this anemone is likely recovering from the stress of capture/handling/transport and getting "settled-in">> During the day the anemones mouth is usually tight and closed. <<A good sign>> I first though maybe a cleaner shrimp got to his mouth and started digging however seeing the anemone return to normal eased these concerns.  The cleaner shrimp do often steel food from the anemone with no concern of getting stung. <<Indeed...though rarely do they do any real "harm">> The anemone does not host the clowns currently and the clowns ignore him as far as I can tell. <<Actually, this is better for the anemone at this stage.  Clownfish can get pretty rough at times with their host anemones and this is hard on (sometimes fatal to) an already stressed specimen>> I realize there is little I can do for a sick anemone but I am curious to rather or not he is dying or I am to expect this behavior for a new acclimated anemone or if there are any steps I can take? <<Keep a close eye on it, maintain pristine water conditions, and keep feeding...>> Also the anemone is attached to the rock not the sand. <<Hmm...is there room on the substrate?  This species does like to retract/hide in the substrate when disturbed>> The foot looks healthy and the anemone is retaining his light green color with no sign of bleaching. <<Keep up the good care and there's a good chance this anemone will recover>> Thanks again, Wyatt <<Happy to assist, EricR>>

Anemone Systems/Green Carpet Anemone Death    5/2/06 Hi guys and gals.  I just had a carpet anemone pass after having him for a little longer than a week.  I did a large water change and added some carbon to try and prevent any noxious elements from harming the rest of the livestock.  Here are the specs on the tank: 36 gallon, 30" wide, 20" tall bowfront reef tank.  <Much too small a tank for keeping this anemone.> The tank has 45 pounds of liverock, 40 pounds of sand, a hang on the back - 3 gallon refugium with multiple macroalgae (no Caulerpa).  The refugium lighting is on when the tank lighting is off and vice versa.  The livestock is two Perc clowns, one coral beauty angel, one star polyp, one pom pom xenia, a few blue-legged hermit crabs, two turbo snails and a cleaner shrimp.  The tank is lit by a 130W PowerCompact, one 65w actinic and one 65w 10,000K/6700K SunPaq. <Not nearly enough light for keeping this species.> (I have two 150watt, 10,000K MH bulbs on the way).  The lights are on for 10 hours a day. The anemone arrived and looked to be in very good condition.  I placed him on the live rock and he moved to a location in the back of the tank lodged between some rock and the glass.  A day later he moved a couple inches away and then moved back.  I fed him three 1/4" chunks of silverside during the first week.  Two days ago I fed him a 1/4" chunk of raw shrimp to vary the diet.  Before I fed him the raw shrimp he was staying expanded about half the day and contracted the rest.  Sometimes when he was contracted it would look as though his insides were coming out or his mouth was shaped like a ping pong ball.  After feeding him the shrimp he never expanded again. I ordered him from liveaquaria.com so I'll get a full refund, but that really isn't the point.  I'd like to prevent this from happening again. What parameters besides ammonia, nitrites, nitrates can I check?  I ordered some reef plus to add vitamins to the tank and also some Selcon to dip food in.  Are there any other suggestion for improvement? <Your system is very non-supportive for this animal. Carpet anemones are sensitive to changes in water parameters.  This can happen fast in a 36 gallon tank.  A minimum tank size of 100 gallons would be my recommendation.  Live Aquaria states a minimum of 30 gallons, yet they tell you this animal is for expert aquarists only. Doesn't make much sense to me as these anemones can grow close to two feet in diameter.  With your size tank I'd forget about carpets completely.  I might point out that all the anemone species the percula clowns prefer are difficult to keep for any length of time.> Thanks for the great website.  I literally have three web browsers open at any given time because I don't want to lose my place once I follow a link! <James (Salty Dog)> Ryan Mullinax
Re: Anemone Systems/Green Carpet Anemone Death  - 5/2/2006
Thanks Salty.  I'll be sure to do more research before any more purchases. <You're welcome and yes, do research all animals before buying.> Can you recommend what marine testing kits NOT to get? <I'm not real fond of the Red Sea Test Kits (personal opinion)> I've been reading the testing kit FAQs and they're pointing to LaMotte and Hach, but I'm reading that they're very expensive. <Yes, I've used LaMotte kits, very nice and accurate.  I'm sure Hach follows the same order.>  I also didn't see calcium test kits on their sites. <I'm sure both companies make this kit.  The Sea Chem Calcium Test Kit is one of my favorites, don't care too much for their pH/alkalinity kit though.  Is accurate but clumsy to use, especially the pH.  For pH and nitrate I use Aquariums Systems kits. James (Salty Dog)> Ryan Mullinax  <Ryan, do not place phone numbers, mailing addys or other personal info in your queries.  I just delete them anyway for your own privacy as gazillions of people read the dailies.> <<And they are archived, viewed for all eternity... RMF>>

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