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Bubble Tip Anemone Care Guide - Part 1

Updated on August 8, 2015

Bubble tip anemones are wonderful, marine aquarium animals. This hub is about how to successfully keep them, what to look for before you buy them and how to "acclimate" them to your home aquarium.

The photos in this hub are of my own Bubble Tip Anemones. Their scientific name is Entacmaea quadricolor.

Instructions to selecting a healthy Bubble Tip Anemone:

1. Make sure the anemone's foot is healthy. The foot should not be torn or tissue exposed.

2. The anemone should be fully inflated and puffy like in my pictures here. Deflated anemones are not necessarily a bad sign but you do want to start with an inflated anemone.

3. Look for tissue necrosis or loss of tentacles. Don't believe everything the seller says. Sometimes sellers will lie to you about the anemone being healthy and after you spend $100.00 on your anemone, the animal dies a week later.

4. Last sign of a bad anemone is if it smells bad. If the anemone smells bad in your hand, do not buy it.

* All these steps are very important when buying a healthy anemone.

Acclimation Instructions:

The next step after selecting a healthy anemone is bringing it home to your aquarium.

1. Float the anemone in the bag for 20 minutes to let the water acclimate to temperature.

2. You can add a drip loop and set it at 5 drops per minute to the bag. If you don't have a drip acclimator, you can add 5 mL's of aquarium water to the bag every 5 minutes. Do this for 1 hour.

3. When the animal has acclimated in the bag after 1 hour, remove the animal from the bag and place its foot in your "preferred" spot. The animal will attach its foot to the rock.

4. Next, sit back and enjoy your new anemone.

Feeding Instructions:

Bubble Tip Anemones are photosynthetic animals as they have zooxanthellae inside their tissues that convert sunlight into algae within their bodies in which the anemone can eat as food for their daily health and growth. They also use this "free-automatic-food" mechanism to store energy in order to create more stinging cells.

1. They can eat small foods such as brine shrimp. They can also eat thawed frozen shrimp, yes the same shrimp we use to cook Italian shrimp fettuccine, just make sure to cut the frozen shrimp down to size so the food can fit in the animals mouth.

2. For particle sized food, you can feed the anemone using a turkey baster or syringe, just squirt the food onto the anemones tentacles.

3. For frozen shrimp, place the shrimp onto the anemones tentacles.

4. Never force feed the animal. Doing this can cause injury to the animal that may lead to its death.

What type of anemone do you keep?

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Bubble Tip Anemones bring lots of life to your saltwater aquarium because they come in different sizes and colors. Their short and bubbly, or sometimes their long tentacles, add a lot of movement and color to your aquarium.

Motion and color are what these anemones are all about! Once your anemone settles in, they will provide you with lots of enjoyment for a long, long, time. Who knows, these animals may even outlive you. They do live beyond 100 years of age. :)

Aquarium Parameters:

Listed below are the ideal aquarium parameters to keep a Bubble Tip Anemone so make sure your temperature is stable, make sure your calcium levels are stable, etc., etc.

Also, do not purchase an anemone if your aquarium is less than 6 months old.

Saltwater Aquarium Parameters

Suggested Level Reef Aquarium
Specific Gravity
1.023 - 1.025
79 - 84°F
8.1 - 8.4
8 - 12 dKH
Ammonia (NH3)
Nitrite (NO2)
Nitrate - Nitrogen (NO3)
< 1.0 ppm
Phosphate (PO4)
< 0.2 ppm
350 - 450 ppm
1250 - 1350 ppm
0.06 - 0.10 ppm
8 - 14 ppm


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