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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Sea Anemones: A How to Guide for Selection, Care, and Feeding

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- Today we're gonna learn about anemones

and walk you through the basics of keeping one.

(lighthearted happy music)

Hi, this is Walen from Marine Depot,

and thanks for tuning in.

Every hobby has an entry point.

For most reef tank hobbyists,

that entry point is keeping a clown fish,

along with their frequent partner in crime, the anemone.

Although most people pair their anemones with clowns,

anemones can live happy and healthy

without their symbiotic buddies.

Most of what we will talk about today

works for the majority of anemones out there.

But this video will be mainly geared

toward the most popular anemone on the market,

the rose bubble tip anemone.

There are over 1,000 species of sea anemones in the wild,

and they are spread throughout the whole world's oceans.

They are classified in a phylum Cnidaria.

And much like their cousin the jellyfish,

they have stinging cells called nematocytes.

Despite praying on small fish and crustaceans,

it's not uncommon to see anemones in the wild

with symbiotic partners, most commonly the clown fish.

In most cases, these partnered animals

provide the anemone with a continual food source,

while the anemone provides them

with protection from predators.

The main thing to know when keeping an anemone

is that stability is your key to success.

New tanks go through numerous cycles

when they are first established,

and they don't really start to settle in

until around the six month point.

To avoid stressing an anemone more than necessary,

it is best to wait until your tank matures to this point

before you start trying to add them into your tank.

The ideal parameters for anemones

fall in line with standard reef tank parameters,

so adding one to an existing reef tank should be just fine.

Just like with reef tanks, the larger your system is,

the easier it is to maintain stability.

Although it's nowhere near impossible, keeping anemones

in tanks under 20 gallons can be tough,

as your parameters are more likely to swing around.

The best way to make sure your water

is where it needs to be is to keep up

with a frequent water change schedule

using RODI water and a high-quality marine salt mix.

Hooking an ATO system to your tank

is also key in maintaining your salinity levels

and keeping your anemones happy and healthy.

When setting up an anemone-friendly tank,

one of the most important things to keep in mind

is that anemones move and can move a lot.

It is not uncommon to put an anemone in your tank

and all of a sudden see it disappear,

only to see it reappear in a different place in your tank.

We have two good-sized bubble tip anemones

in our Innovative Marine 50 gallon Lagoon.

And although one of them seems to be happy where he is,

the second never seems to settle

and seems to change his mind on a weekly basis.

A wide variety of factors, including lighting and flow,

can cause anemones to move.

Unfortunately, there isn't always a way

to keep them where you want.

As some anemones are frequent wanderers,

you may need to take action to nem-proof your tank

so that they don't injure themselves.

If you're working with a system

where your heater is in your main display tank

as opposed to in a sump or bag chamber,

it is possible that the anemone

will get a bit too close and burn itself.

An easy solution is to place your heater

in a corrugated plastic tube so that it

will still have appropriate water flow

while also isolating it from the anemone.

One unfortunate experience a staffer at our office had

was that his anemone decided to wander into his powerhead.

Some anemones have long, sweeping tentacles

that can get caught in powerheads,

even if they're just in the general area.

Some powerheads, such as the EcoTech VorTech,

have an anemone pump guard available.

This guard can be placed around the pump

to prevent fish and other animals

from getting caught inside.

Some level of protection such as this

may be worth looking into just to make sure

that your anemone doesn't get caught as well.

There's a couple of things to keep in mind

when purchasing an anemone that you need to consider.

Remember that these animals are predatory in nature.

Even though certain fish, like clown fish,

thrive when paired with anemones, there are many more fish

that would just act as food for these anemones.

Small fish and crustaceans are especially susceptible

to being caught, and especially in smaller tanks.

They may not make a good fit.

Similar to some species of LPS,

like hammer and torch corals, anemones with long,

sweeping tentacles are also very capable

of stinging corals that surround them.

Unlike these corals, anemones are very capable

of moving around freely.

This means that they may decide to settle down

right next to your most precious coral and harass it.

As with any livestock that you're adding to your tank,

it is important to research them before buying

and to understand the potential consequences

of adding them to your system.

Once you decide that you're ready for an anemone,

there are a couple important things to look for.

The easiest way to determine that you

are looking at a healthy anemone

is to inspect their oral disc and their foot.

The mouth is at the center of their oral disc.

And other than feeding and defecation,

it should be closed at all times.

If you notice that the mouth is gaping,

it is likely that the anemone is not healthy.

In regards to the foot, check to see

that it is holding tight to whatever it is on.

If the anemone isn't tightly rooted,

then it may be unhealthy or stressed.

Acclimation for anemones is pretty simple.

If you have the available space,

it is ideal to quarantine your anemone

for several weeks before adding it to your main tank

to check for any illnesses or parasites.

Float the container that the anemone is in inside your tank

for about 30 minutes to equalize the temperature.

You can then set up a drip application

using airline tubing and a pinch valve.

Set up the line so that you're adding about one drip

of water from your tank per second to the anemone's water.

Once the water has doubled in volume,

remove half the anemone's water

and let the volume double once again.

At this point, you can add the anemone into your tank.

Upon adding it, it is best to turn your lights

and flow down, slowly increasing them

back to normal levels over two weeks or so.

Doing so will give the anemone time

to slowly adjust to your tank's standard conditions.

It will also relieve stress for them.

If you have additional organisms inside your tank

with stinging cells, acclimation can be a bit more tricky.

Upon initial introduction of the anemone to the tank,

other organisms may detect the anemone.

And they may attempt a form of chemical warfare

to eliminate them, as they are viewed as competition.

In his 2017 Reef-A-Palooza presentation on anemones,

Bob Fenner also talked about a method of acclimation

to help avoid these issues.

Once you have a new anemone established

in a quarantine tank and have made sure

it's free of parasites and hitchhikers,

take about a cup of water from each tank and swap them.

Doing so will slowly introduce the stinging organisms

and the anemone to each other, decreasing the likelihood

that they will try to kill each other.

We have included a link to Bob's full presentation

in this video's cards if you wanna check the rest of it out.

Much like coral, anemones are photosynthetic.

In terms of lighting, you want to provide the anemone

with full spectrum light between 100 and 200 PAR,

which is achievable with most of the stronger LEDs

on the market, as well as T5s and metal halides.

While the light may occasionally be too much for anemones,

they will take it upon themselves

to move to a shadier spot if need be.

Just make sure that they have somewhere to go.

In addition to lighting,

anemones also need to eat solid food.

Although they may survive in your tank

by feeding during general broadcast feeding,

if you wanna make sure your anemone is thriving,

it is best to spot feed them as well.

It is best to feed the anemone small pieces of meaty foods

once or twice every two weeks.

It may be easiest to do this

after feeding the rest of your tank

to fill up your other livestock and dissuade them

from stealing the anemone's food.

Once the anemone is established in your tank,

it is entirely possible it will begin to reproduce.

The major way you will see this happen

is that the larger anemone will slowly divide

and eventually split into two smaller ones.

It really isn't that uncommon for someone

to start with one anemone, and after the anemone

starts splitting, they will have a tank fulL of them.

At our office, it's pretty common to have new anemones

being passed out to staff after a split occurs.

The last step that most people wanna see

is to start a relationship

between their anemone and their clown fish.

Most anemones will begin to host clown fish naturally.

But if you would like to get a bit more information

on how you can get this process jump-started,

we have linked an article on hosting

in the video's cards below.

I really hope you found this information helpful

and that it wasn't overwhelming, as anemones

are wonderful additions to tanks when properly planned out.

If you have any favorite types of anemones

or any tips for keeping them,

let us know in the comments below.

Don't forget to like this video

and subscribe for more helpful videos upcoming.

As always, take care and enjoy your reef-keeping journey.

(lighthearted happy music)

The Description of Sea Anemones: A How to Guide for Selection, Care, and Feeding