Planning & Research - Anemone Tank

Rob.In.AZ

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I am thinking about setting up my next tank, and I am thinking about anemone/ clown tank. Straight off the top, a couple of things.
I will be adding a clown pair. I totally get the challenges of adding more clowns than that and don't really have any allusions to doing a harem (even though it would be cool).
I have also never kept an anemone of any kind. Just throwing that out there.
I have kept reef tanks of various ilk since 2004. I throw that out there not b/c I think I know everything, honestly most days I feel like I know nothing. But my tanks have been SPS dominant from about 2007 or 2008 on, so I do have some idea of what I am doing in general.

I am in the process of breaking down my current tank. 6ftx2ft 155g SPS reef. We have a new house being built, and I am not moving my tank. There isn't a great spot for a 6ft tank with the layout of the new house, and if I am being honest with myself, with 2 young kids the time/ effort of my tank is a bit of a drag. My goal is to setup something a little smaller, and a little lighter on the maintenance effort.
(As an aside, anyone else buying or building a house...godspeed. Prices are stupid high on...well, everything. Supply chain and labor issue mean build time is long AF, and interest rates just keep going up.)

Based on the space I am looking at either a 24" cube of some sort, or possibly an IM 50g AIO.
  • I know (or at least I think I can) do BTAs. How about a H. magnifica? I am perfectly okay with this becoming nothing but anemone and clown pair with some additional fish. I am specifically think about tank size when asking if I can keep those. I know magnifica are considered more difficult to keep, but there was a tank that feature a huge one and I've always wanted to keep one.
  • If not, anything that would be a better fit?
  • Lighting? Thinking G6 XR15 or some sort of Hydra 32, but not married to them. Probably am married to LEDs, have an ATI T5 setup and while it's been great, the T5 tube replacement is a bit of a drag.
  • Flow? I'd love to save a buck or two and go with a couple of Nero 5s if that's an option. Otherwise probably go with 1 or 2 MP10s.
  • Am I setting myself up for more maintenance?
  • My game plan was refuge and some ceramic media. That make sense or is a skimmer a must have? I am not opposed to a skimmer at all, just like I said, trying to reduce maintenance burden, and a skimmer is just one more thing to empty/ pull out and clean/ one more pump to clean.
Lots of things for me to consider, and I know I have a bunch of reading/ watching to do before this tank gets off the ground, which is fine b/c we got a good 4-6 months before we close on the new house. If anyone has good links (beside this board and the stickies on this board ofc) please send them my way!
 

Pkunk35

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I am thinking about setting up my next tank, and I am thinking about anemone/ clown tank. Straight off the top, a couple of things.
I will be adding a clown pair. I totally get the challenges of adding more clowns than that and don't really have any allusions to doing a harem (even though it would be cool).
I have also never kept an anemone of any kind. Just throwing that out there.
I have kept reef tanks of various ilk since 2004. I throw that out there not b/c I think I know everything, honestly most days I feel like I know nothing. But my tanks have been SPS dominant from about 2007 or 2008 on, so I do have some idea of what I am doing in general.

I am in the process of breaking down my current tank. 6ftx2ft 155g SPS reef. We have a new house being built, and I am not moving my tank. There isn't a great spot for a 6ft tank with the layout of the new house, and if I am being honest with myself, with 2 young kids the time/ effort of my tank is a bit of a drag. My goal is to setup something a little smaller, and a little lighter on the maintenance effort.
(As an aside, anyone else buying or building a house...godspeed. Prices are stupid high on...well, everything. Supply chain and labor issue mean build time is long AF, and interest rates just keep going up.)

Based on the space I am looking at either a 24" cube of some sort, or possibly an IM 50g AIO.
  • I know (or at least I think I can) do BTAs. How about a H. magnifica? I am perfectly okay with this becoming nothing but anemone and clown pair with some additional fish. I am specifically think about tank size when asking if I can keep those. I know magnifica are considered more difficult to keep, but there was a tank that feature a huge one and I've always wanted to keep one.
  • If not, anything that would be a better fit?
  • Lighting? Thinking G6 XR15 or some sort of Hydra 32, but not married to them. Probably am married to LEDs, have an ATI T5 setup and while it's been great, the T5 tube replacement is a bit of a drag.
  • Flow? I'd love to save a buck or two and go with a couple of Nero 5s if that's an option. Otherwise probably go with 1 or 2 MP10s.
  • Am I setting myself up for more maintenance?
  • My game plan was refuge and some ceramic media. That make sense or is a skimmer a must have? I am not opposed to a skimmer at all, just like I said, trying to reduce maintenance burden, and a skimmer is just one more thing to empty/ pull out and clean/ one more pump to clean.
Lots of things for me to consider, and I know I have a bunch of reading/ watching to do before this tank gets off the ground, which is fine b/c we got a good 4-6 months before we close on the new house. If anyone has good links (beside this board and the stickies on this board ofc) please send them my way!

hi! Welcome and this tank sounds like it could be cool so I’d like to try and help!
In order of your questions:
1) no idea on magnifica but it looks challenging just by size. I do know bubble tips are easy but reproduce like crazy. I did have a carpet anemone, I loved it, was super easy to keep, but will eat anything besides clownfish that can touch it (it would try to eat you if it could) I do not know if ocellaris can host it either, I had to get true percula.

2) dedicated to species tank I think most kinds will work.

3) if saving a buck think used G5’s which is a great light and just came out practically imo, or used kessil or along those lines. That said, I think most all options will work so go with budget and taste here.

4)Nero 5 for the win here imo. really love my Nero 3.

5). ? How? Just plan your maintenance routine and make it so. Reef tanks are money and time sinks no matter what. I actually think a nem tank is kinda easy maintenance wise bc of the limitations on inhabitants.

6). Imo for this species type tank, you could maybe skip the skimmer for a while if you’re doing regular water changes. So, maybe preplan a spot for it if you want it, but skip it for now to save money. I’ve actually run almost all my tanks over my life with no skimmer, you will be fine.
 
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Rob.In.AZ

Rob.In.AZ

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hi! Welcome and this tank sounds like it could be cool so I’d like to try and help!
In order of your questions:
1) no idea on magnifica but it looks challenging just by size. I do know bubble tips are easy but reproduce like crazy. I did have a carpet anemone, I loved it, was super easy to keep, but will eat anything besides clownfish that can touch it (it would try to eat you if it could) I do not know if ocellaris can host it either, I had to get true percula.

2) dedicated to species tank I think most kinds will work.

3) if saving a buck think used G5’s which is a great light and just came out practically imo, or used kessil or along those lines. That said, I think most all options will work so go with budget and taste here.

4)Nero 5 for the win here imo. really love my Nero 3.

5). ? How? Just plan your maintenance routine and make it so. Reef tanks are money and time sinks no matter what. I actually think a nem tank is kinda easy maintenance wise bc of the limitations on inhabitants.

6). Imo for this species type tank, you could maybe skip the skimmer for a while if you’re doing regular water changes. So, maybe preplan a spot for it if you want it, but skip it for now to save money. I’ve actually run almost all my tanks over my life with no skimmer, you will be fine.
Thanks for the info.
Re: lights - the only real requirement for me is some sort of control plane. I may or may not have my Apex post break down.
Re: maintenance - I am assuming I will be doing weekly WC's of a fairly good size. Currently doing them on a 155g so I am set up to do 10-15 gals per week would be really not a big change from where I am at now, but be more impactful on a smaller tank.
 
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dvgyfresh

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Nothing really to add except nem tanks are basically SPS tanks except you want to maintain a bit more nitrate / phosphate. It’s all about stability and tank maturity. If you need to use new rock I’d reccomend live rock. I keep multiple species together and haven’t seen issues - LTA, BTA, H. Aurora. Make sure to run a lot of carbon
 

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Pkunk35

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Nothing really to add except nem tanks are basically SPS tanks except you want to maintain a bit more nitrate / phosphate. It’s all about stability and tank maturity. If you need to use new rock I’d reccomend live rock. I keep multiple species together and haven’t seen issues - LTA, BTA, H. Aurora. Make sure to run a lot of carbon

do you believe the carbon to reduce the effect of multiple species together? I have spoken to aquarists who swear they send out something in the water that can harm other anemones
 
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dvgyfresh

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do you believe the carbon to reduce the effect of multiple species together? I have spoken to aquarists who swear they send out something in the water that can harm other anemones
Yes carbon helps all the nems get along , another thing to have on hand is ciproflaxin in case one of the anemones do get sick. I had to use cipro and save anemones , even with different strains of BTA it can happen
 
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Rob.In.AZ

Rob.In.AZ

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Nothing really to add except nem tanks are basically SPS tanks except you want to maintain a bit more nitrate / phosphate. It’s all about stability and tank maturity. If you need to use new rock I’d reccomend live rock. I keep multiple species together and haven’t seen issues - LTA, BTA, H. Aurora. Make sure to run a lot of carbon

Cool thanks.
It's a bit of a decision point I suppose. The level of work to keep an SPS tank or in the case a nem tank vs an LPS & Zoa tank (nothing wrong with that). Concern is I have tried running a less demanding tank in the past. The result was me getting bored and reworking the tank so I could keep SPS.


Unrelated thought on Maintenance - if I go with an AIO, and I am doing WC's straight from the display, any concern if the nems are out of the water/ exposed?
 
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dvgyfresh

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Cool thanks.
It's a bit of a decision point I suppose. The level of work to keep an SPS tank or in the case a nem tank vs an LPS & Zoa tank (nothing wrong with that). Concern is I have tried running a less demanding tank in the past. The result was me getting bored and reworking the tank so I could keep SPS.


Unrelated thought on Maintenance - if I go with an AIO, and I am doing WC's straight from the display, any concern if the nems are out of the water/ exposed?
An sps / anemone tank would be the most work ! Lol , I think the nems would be fine out of water just for a couple minutes , however, if you have them in a nice spot they might move after because it does stress them
 
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Lost in the Sauce

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Hi. Congrats on the new build. You're right, prices aren't going down.

Unless you are planning on buying ocean live, rock direct and wet, I would highly advise you to Keep your live rock, from this tank. A simple brute trash can with heater and small pump can keep them cycling in the dark for months on the with very little maintenance. All anemones prefer long cycled and stable tanks.

If wanting a mag at some point plan for MOAR light than you think up front. They are Par Hogs. Used G5 Should become laying down in price as the G6 rolls out.

Here's my nem tank. This is a rsr250 and I would Not want to go smaller. My Sherman rose is a foot across, as is the LTA and seafoam carpet.

Every fish and invert that goes in here is subject to being eaten by carpets. I know that and I'm completely fine with it. Luckily my carpets have mostly a taste for starfish.

I house BTA, LTA, Condi, RFA, haddoni carpets, mini carpets.
PXL_20220430_012259653.jpg
 
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Rtaylor

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Only thing to add would be to consider maybe a closed loop system if you’re starting from scratch. Wave makers, even with guards are dangerous for anemones. I’ve lost several nems this way unfortunately. Anemones are fine out of water for 30 minutes or more (they are often exposed for hours during low tide).
 
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Rob.In.AZ

Rob.In.AZ

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Hi. Congrats on the new build. You're right, prices aren't going down.

Unless you are planning on buying ocean live, rock direct and wet, I would highly advise you to Keep your live rock, from this tank. A simple brute trash can with heater and small pump can keep them cycling in the dark for months on the with very little maintenance. All anemones prefer long cycled and stable tanks.

If wanting a mag at some point plan for MOAR light than you think up front. They are Par Hogs. Used G5 Should become laying down in price as the G6 rolls out.

Here's my nem tank. This is a rsr250 and I would Not want to go smaller. My Sherman rose is a foot across, as is the LTA and seafoam carpet.

Every fish and invert that goes in here is subject to being eaten by carpets. I know that and I'm completely fine with it. Luckily my carpets have mostly a taste for starfish.

I house BTA, LTA, Condi, RFA, haddoni carpets, mini carpets.
PXL_20220430_012259653.jpg

Great looking tank.
Keeping my LR is definitely on the table. My thought was to actually throw it in one of my brutes with a powerhead and picking up a cheap fluorescent light of some sort. Much easier to move than my tank. I do have one spot that would fit a 6ft tank almost perfectly. Would run into issues with powerheads. no way I could get vortechs on the ends, and even things with flat magnets would fit but would be painful w.r.t cleaning. And I'd have to find a spot for my wife's Grandmother's piano. Crunching the numbers, doesn't make too much sense, and moving that heavy butt tank...but looking at my big tank makes me want to find a way to keep it.

Your comment about the mags being PAR hogs, IDK, might not be in the cards for me. My thought was mag first, let it get settled, then add around. But even then, costs are a bit of a concern. Building a house in this stupid market, then adding in the fact that we're going from a fully landscaped backyard with a pool to a dirt lot. That's going to be expensive too. And we need a new couch, and we want a new fridge. More lighting may not be in the cards. Hell, the idea that I am going to get this tank going any time in the near future may not be in the cards.

Only thing to add would be to consider maybe a closed loop system if you’re starting from scratch. Wave makers, even with guards are dangerous for anemones. I’ve lost several nems this way unfortunately. Anemones are fine out of water for 30 minutes or more (they are often exposed for hours during low tide).

Thanks for the info about being out of the water. Initial thought was that would be the case, but didn't want to assume. I find, in this hobby, it's easy to get out of your lane quickly. most people know what they know, but it doesn't take much to stray outside of that. Me and anemones as an example. I wouldn't have any concerns about any SPS, even the super pricey, super fancy stuff. Cause I know that stuff and have the better part of 15 years keep that stuff. Nems? Still learning the basics!
 
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Humongous

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I keep two gigantea and on magnificent in a 60 cube. They have all grown up together for the past three years. I run one Orphek Atlantik compact and they have never been starved for light. I also only run one Jebao SLW20 and they love the flow. The system only has two clowns that set up home in all three with an anemone crab. I have never ran carbon in the system, just a filter sock and skimmer. Over the years I have found that my bigger nems always looked better with some nitrate and phosphate in the water. In my SPS tank the colors are not as vivid in the nems. Nothing wrong with running carbon now and then, but with 60 gallons I would just do a water change.

Good luck!
 
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Lost in the Sauce

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Only thing to add would be to consider maybe a closed loop system if you’re starting from scratch. Wave makers, even with guards are dangerous for anemones. I’ve lost several nems this way unfortunately. Anemones are fine out of water for 30 minutes or more (they are often exposed for hours during low tide).
I can't remember who sent me the article, But it was saying that commercially up until a decade ago, many types of anemones were actually shipped dry, insofar as they were totally deflated of water and shipped in a bag with wet paper towel....
 
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