It is strongly advised that anemones only be added after your tank has reached a certain level of maturity, since most ornamental anemones prefer crystal clear water, stable water parameters, strong flow and strong illumination. If everything was done correctly, this can be as soon as 6-9 months. Before purchasing an anemone, a couple of things should be kept in mind (see The Anemone FAQ).
- Anemones collected from the reef are central to the symbiotic relationship with clown fish. Clown fish do not naturally survive long in the wild without their host anemone, thus it is preferable to not buy them.
- Anemones tend to wander in the aquarium - especially if they are not happy with their environmental conditions - and when they do, they will sting everything in their path.
- Many anemones get very large - some more than 1 meter in diameter. Keep this in mind when deciding which anemone to buy.
- Not all anemones will work as hosts for any clown fish. There is a specific list of anemones used as hosting partners by specific clown fish. Make sure to research this before just buying any anemone.
- Most anemones are fish predators, meaning that slow moving fish are easy prey for them.