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Tube Anemone Placement Guide – Everything You Need To Know!

With the beautiful colors and unique colors of tube anemones, their popularity has slowly been increasing within the reef tank keeping community.

Although some people don’t think that tube anemones are beginner friendly, most people will usually find that they are very easy to care for when you plan their placement in your tank to maximize their needs.

We have noticed more and more questions about tube anemone placement recently due to people realizing how many easy to avoid mistakes they have been making.

This is why we have decided to publish our tube anemone placement guide to try and help as many of our readers who want to keep a tube anemone in their tank as possible.

Your specific setup for your reef tank or marine tank will come into play with where and how you have to place your tube anemone but for the most part, the points to note covered below should be able to help you.

Tube Anemone Placement Guide

We have a list going over the most common mistakes that we see people make when it comes to placing their tube anemone:-

  • Surface!
  • Lighting!
  • Water Flow!
  • Water Temperature!
  • Nutrition!
  • Tank Mates!

Depending on your tank setup, all of these should be factored in but most tanks will have to factor in the first four points as this is where so many people end up making mistakes.


The most common mistake that we see people make with their tube anemone placement is the surface that they actually try to place their tube anemone on.

Although it can work on various surfaces, growth rate can definitely be affected negatively if you get it wrong.

In our opinion, you should always try to use a rock as the main base surface for your tube anemone and ideally, place it as close to the substrate as possible.

This will allow your anemone to extend as required to thrive and encourage the best possible growth rates.

We know that you can get a tube anemone to work when placed directly on the substrate but this really does make your job of caring for your tube anemone much more difficult than it needs to be.


Tube anemones are not photosynthetic meaning that lighting intensity is not as important for them as most other types of anemones.

That said, just because the importance of lighting is not relevant in how the anemone produces energy, it does come into play with potential burning.

We would not recommend that you place your tube anemone in an area of high lighting intensity if possible and always try to place your tube anemone in an area with low light if possible.

Most tube anemones will grow without issue in areas of moderate lighting intensity.

Water Flow!

You should never place your tube anemone in areas of your tank with high water flow and even a moderate flow can negatively impact the majority of tube anemones.

Wild tube anemones usually live in areas with minimal water flow but in aquariums where they are actively being fed by you, they tend to thrive in no water flow tanks.

That said though, if you do need water flow in your tank then a low water flow tank should be fine for a tube anemone.

If you do need a moderate water flow in the tank then try to block as much of the water flow off as possible with the rock you mount your tube anemone too.

This will usually be able to reduce the total water flow rate hitting the anemone to allow it to thrive in your tank or at least grow at a stable rate.

Water Temperature!

The majority of tube anemones need to be kept in tanks with a water temperature range of 59 to 72° F (15 to 22°C).

This will allow the anemone to thrive and grow quickly but in some situations, they may be able to live in tanks that are slightly outside of this temperature range with minimal issues.

There are plenty of different anemones, corals, fish, snails, and shrimp out there that also work well within this temperature range though so the majority of people should easily be able to plan out a reef tank setup around their tube anemone.

As with most things based around a reef tank, a little prior planning can help to reduce the potential problems with the tank in the future and avoid mix matched water temperature requirements.


As we touched on earlier in the article, tube anemones are photosynthetic so the actual nutrition of the anemone is more important than the lighting provided to the anemone when it comes to growth rate.

Thankfully tube anemones do well on very similar foods as most other anemones such as:-

  • Fish.
  • Clam.
  • Muscle.
  • Squid.
  • Shrimp.

Ideally, you will be cutting these into small pieces to make them as easy as possible for your tube anemone to eat easily.

In most cases, you will usually be able to use the exact same foods that you are feeding the other anemones in your tank without issue.

Just remember that in the vast majority of reef tank setups, you will have to feed your tube anemone.

So many beginners to keeping an anemone fail to realize that anemones need feeding and overlook this resulting in poor growth rate in their anemones.

Tank Mates!

Tube anemones don’t do well in tanks with fish or shrimp that will nip them.

Even the slightest nip can cause the anemone to retract and cause issues with the anemone growing.

Ideally, you should only be keeping your tube anemone in a tank with reef safe tank mates but even then, there can be exceptions where a very small number of creatures from a reef safe species will still nip anemones.