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Old 05-02-2008, 11:24 PM   #1
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Carpet Anemone Advice

Ok, some of you helped me when my fish were fighting, now I got rid of a tang and was given a carpet anemone. I have read all of these scary things about them, will someone tell me what to expect and signs of trouble to look for. I am such a beginner I might have gotten in over my head with a carpet but I hope if I'm prepared I will be ok. Tank is a 55 gallon. Thanks
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Old 05-02-2008, 11:26 PM   #2
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Hmmm, you should have a tank that is at least 6-9 months mature.
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Old 05-02-2008, 11:50 PM   #3
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my tank is only a couple months old. Is there any way it would survive or should I get rid of it?
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Old 05-03-2008, 12:30 AM   #4
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Newer tanks are still subject to water fluctuations. I'm not the pro on carpets, but if I recall, they are harder to take care of.
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Old 05-03-2008, 01:23 AM   #5
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I think they like to make fish disappear, also!
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Old 05-03-2008, 07:17 AM   #6
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Kurt is correct. Other than clown fish, and even they have to be careful initially, a carpet anemone will eat any fish, shrimp or crab that contacts it.
The plus is clown fish will readily adopt a carpet anemone, as for many species, its their natural host.
The minuses are several, not the least of which they get big; very big, as in two feet in diameter plus for Stichodactyla haddoni, and up to four feet across for S. mertensii. S. gigantea is a mere 16 or 17 inches across, and thus the best species for a tank the size of the poster's 55 gallon.
They MUST have perfect natural sea water levels, as they will not tolerate a whiff of Nitrate. They will respond by shriveling up in the presence of a few PPM of Nitrate, and will quickly die unless the situation is rectified.
They also need bright, reef-like light. You can keep a carpet anemone under VHO tubes, but a halide or two wouldn't go amiss.
Without the proper lighting a carpet anemone will shrivel and die.
They also will wander until they find a spot they like, so if you keep corals with your anemone, it would be best to allow the anemone to establish itself first, before adding corals, as make no mistake, carpet anemones can really sting, and can easily kill a coral.
Each species has specific substrate needs. Haddoni needs a deep sand bed, so it can retreat if threatened, like by the hand of a fishkeeper. Gigantea attaches to hard surfaces, like a large piece of live rock that's suitably even. Mertensii likes to put its base in a crevice or hole in live rock, and spread itself over the surrounding rock.
All of them survive better in the presence of clownfish.
Carpet anemones should be fed once or twice a week. They can survive on their symbiotic algae, but experiment with different meaty sea food to see what it'll take. Needless to say, the tank must be kept scrupulously clean, so any uneaten food or offal from the anemone itself should be PROMPTLY removed.
Carpet anemones can be successfully kept, but are one of the most challenging animals to care for, even more so than the common anemones in the hobby. But they are fascinating, strangely beautiful creatures.

Dave
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Old 05-03-2008, 08:38 AM   #7
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As the others have said they need a mature and most importantly a STABLE tank. I really dont think a couple months is long enough but keep track of your water test results and if everything is not bouncing around then you might be OK. Very good post Dave.
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Old 05-03-2008, 06:16 PM   #8
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Wow, excellent posts guys, I cannot tell you how much I appreciate this website and all of your imput. I don't know if I am a rookie and am wearing rose color glasses but my tank is very well filtered, it is spotless almost all the time, I have an excellent cleaner crew, I have a clown already hosting in the carpet. The levels have been perfect since the tank finished cycling. My Nitrate and Nitrite have remained at 0 since the cycle, I do relatively frequent water changes. If someone could give me a quess what are the odds of the carpet living? Like 50%? Thanks again so much...
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Old 05-07-2008, 09:04 AM   #9
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Carpet Anemone Advice

What is normal activity for a Carpet Anemone? Mine doesnt look as vigorous as it did when I first got him but I am not sure what that means? Any help?
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Old 05-07-2008, 09:15 AM   #10
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How long has your tank been established? What are your water parameters? (the actual numbers from test kits) What kind of light do you have on the tank? How large is your tank?

Carpets are very particular about the water they are in. It has to be dang near perfect for them to be happy. Any nitrAtes and they will not be happy.
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