Hot Tips: Aiptasia Control
selection of useful tidbits of information and tricks for the
marine aquarist submitted by Advanced Aquarist's readership. Readers
are encouraged to post them to our Hot Tips sticky in the Reefs.org General Reefkeeping Discussion forum or send their tips to email@example.com for possible publication. Next month's Hot Tip theme will be "Algae Control".
When I see Aiptasia I nuke them with Kalkwasser. I just mix a bit of kalk in a small glass with warm water untill it is thick. I use a test kit syringe and suck the slurry up. Turn off the circulation pumps and pump a bit of kalk paste on the anemones oral disk. It should stick being so thick and cover the area. You can turn the pumps back on after kalking is all done, it shouldnt blow around the tank. If the ifection is bad just do a few a day so you don't have to worry about a pH jump.
It took two doses on the big mother Aiptasia and I introduced a pepermint shrimp. Though I've never seen her eat them, there are no more new baby pests.
I've had good luck with pepermints. The first one I put in my tank went right for the biggest aptasia I had. It reached right down the oral disc and ripped it's insides out. I wish I would have been filming!
My very easy, very cheap, 100% effective method is to get a stick lighter that people use to light BBQs and just torch the spot the anemone is on for about 20 seconds. Kills a dime sized spot of rock, but it quickly recovers. Works well for majano anemones as well, or for killing any living thing you don't want in your tank.
Peppermints are great if you can keep them in high density and they are permanent. Aiptasia will come back if you remove the shrimp though. There are also issues with peppermints occasionally eating zoanthids and clam mantles as well.
My 100% effective approach is to quarantine all rocks and corals: no pests!