• LIGHT: MODERATE-HIGH (150-250 par) is what we find best although sometimes we are even confused. The typical recommendation is to blast them with light (up to 350par) but we haven't always gotten the best results doing this. For this reason, we recommend MODERATE high lighting around 200-250 par and allow the anemone to adjust its position as desired. Overall these anemones seem adaptable to a variety of lighting conditions. You can learn more about Lighting and it's overall impact on your reef tank in our article Lighting and your Reef Tank

  • FOOD: We haven't noticed that any specific feeding strategy is required for these corals. However we find that larger specimens do benefit from occasional spot feeding of meaty foods like mysis and brine. You can hurt these corals by over-doing the feeding so try to use restraint if spot feeding. Like most corals they capture nutrients from the water and will do best when supplied a healthy amount of food. Our method is high import, high export. You can learn more about Feeding and Filtration in our article Feeding, Filtration and your Reef Tank.

  • FLOW: LOW-MODERATE. Flow can be a big challenge for bubble tip anemones. They tend to go for walks and will get sucked up easily into any unguarded flow makers in your aquarium. The best tank for anemones in general is one that is designed with them in mind. Of course there are various flow guards you can use to fix your pumps all of these require additional maintenance and do not always work 100% effectively. If your BTA is drawn into a flow maker it will likely die as a result. Like goldilocks you want it to be just right. Too much flow, especially direct flow, can cause damage to the coral's tissue or an inability to capture food. You can read more about Flow and its overall impact on your reef tank in our article Flow and your Reef Tank

  • DIFFICULTY: ADVANCED.  While many people have success breeding BTAs in captivity, we think saying it is "easy" or even moderately easy to do is a bit misleading. We have had mixed success with captive breeding of these species and have recently developed a brand new system dedicated specifically to them with this goal in mind. If you have the means to do such things then the difficulty rating may slide down, however most folks are considering adding these to an existing reef or a mixed reef and that can be far more difficult to accomplish successfully. Like with all corals, specimens have been seen to do well in captivity when the right combination of Food/Light/Flow and Filtration are achieved. 

  • PRICE: MODERATE-HIGH. Although they can be found cheaper if the color is not as vibrant or possibly from a buddy who has a large specimen that is spawning free babies, the majority of the "ultra color" varieties are wholesaling for a minimum of $75-100 dollars and putting the retail at $250+ for online sales. Some people seek specific lineages but we have trouble understanding why. Perhaps it is just a 'flex'. Often times lineaged BTA's will have a dramatic increase in price. and can cost north of $1000 dollars per specimen. 

  • COLLECTION ZONE: Indo-Pacific

  • SCIENTIFIC NAME: Entacmaea quadricolor. Bubble-tip anemone is a species of sea anemone in the family Actiniidae. Like several anemone species, E. quadricolor can support several anemonefish species, and displays two growth types based on where they live in the water column, one of which gives it the common name, due to the bulbous tips on its tentacles.

  • AGGRESSION: AGGRESSIVE. These corals can grow large and will sting and eat meaty foods in the water. Usually they do not pose a harm to fish unless the fish is not healthy or is otherwise struggling.

  • NATURAL TEMPERATURE: 82 °F / 28 °C  although most corals can adapt and survive in temps as low as 77 degrees and as high as 84 degrees. You can read more about temperature and how it affects your reef tank in our article Temperature and your Reef Tank.

  • PH: Recommend 8.0-8.4, we tend to run around 8.2-8.3 over 24 hours. You can read more about pH in our article pH and your Reef Tank

  • NITRATE: 5-10, try to keep stable. You can read more about nitrate and our approach to maintaining it in our article Nutrients and your Reef Tank

  • PHOSPHATE: 0.05-0.1, try to keep stable. You can read more about Phosphate and our approach to maintaining it in our article Nutrients and your Reef Tank

  • ALKALINITY: While these are soft corals and are not consumers of calcium/alkalinity as they do not lay a calcium carbonate skeleton, we still recommend 8-9 dKh. You can read more about how we maintain our alkalinity in our article Alkalinity, Calcium and your Reef Tank

  • CALCIUM: While these are soft corals and are not consumers of calcium/alkalinity as they do not lay a calcium carbonate skeleton, we still recommend 400-450 Calcium. You can read more about how we maintain our calcium in our article Alkalinity, Calcium and your Reef Tank

More About Bubble Tip Anemones

Entacmaea quadricolor, commonly known as Bubble-tip anemones, are a species of sea anemones belonging to the Actiniidae family. Their common name comes from the bulbous tips that form on each tentacle. The anemone’s delicate foot is located on the bottom. The foot has simple muscle fibers that help the anemone move and anchor onto rocks or sand. Bubble-tip anemones are often found in a variety of vibrant shades of red, pink, green, and orange. Most members of the Actiniidae family do not participate in the symbiotic relationship of hosting clownfish and other anemonefish that is often enjoyed by hobbyists, but the Bubble-tip anemone is an exception to the rule and usually makes a gracious host.

Bubble-tip anemones require moderate to higher lighting. We recommend between 220-350 PAR. Bubble-tip anemones also prefer moderate water flow to assist in filter feeding particles of food. Bear in mind that anemones will often move themselves until they find an area with their preferred amount of flow and lighting. Please do not attempt to glue your anemone down. They need to be able to move. That said, try to place your anemone in a low area away from wavemakers and pumps. An anemone that gets sucked in, chopped up, and blown all over your tank could be a real problem.


Through their symbiotic relationship with a photosynthetic algae, known as zooxanthellae, they receive many of their nutrients. Bubble-tip anemones benefit from targeted weekly feeding with meaty foods such Mysis shrimp or frozen preparations. To maintain good health, monitor your water conditions regularly to avoid any major changes or swings in parameters.


When placing your Bubble-tip anemone, please remember that these animals will move to a spot in the tank that they deem best. Be sure to introduce your anemone to an area away  from wavemakers and pumps.






While anemones are similar to corals and share the same species group (along with jellyfish) they are not soft coral

bubble tip anemone

bubble tip anemone


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