I hate to tell everyone this, but Shaggy died last week and it was all my fault. He hadn't been acting like himself. He wasn't coming out of his den and dancing like he did every morning, he wasn't hunting and he had started eating one of his legs. It was half gone. I was really worried about him and decided to put him into a different tank. You see Shaggy was in a reef tank. I'd had him for 5 months and he was doing fine in the reef tank, even though everyone says Octos should be in a species tank. He fed. He hunted. He danced. He never hid too much. He had a couple of different dens that he decorated with bits of shell and small rocks. He had his own fridge, I kept live ghost shrimp in the empty internal filter chamber Shaggy would go in and eat his fill. He fished, he'd leave bits of shrimp outside his den's door and when the fish came by to eat them, he'd try and catch them. He seemed very happy. But with this change in his behaviour, I thought maybe the fish were ganging up on him. Something was causing him to change. Maybe I was overreacting. I am feeling really guilty about it all now. Anyway I had to pull the reef apart to move Shaggy to the other tank. I got all the fish and coral out, but by the time I found Shaggy, he was dead. It really didn't take me that long, and hour or so, so maybe he was dead before I started the move. I hadn't seen him at all that day which was very unusual, but that is too much of a coincidence for me to swallow.
For the 5 months I had Shaggy he brought me lots of joy. I feel like a very bad Octo mommy. I'd give just about anything to see him dance across the tank one last time.
Now I have two mature tanks, I may buy another octopus and keep it in a species tank. I've asked the LFS to keep an eye out on one for me, but I am still in mourning for Shaggy and can't really think about it right now. I feel like I've already done badly by his species and wouldn't want to subject another little guy to my bad parenting.
Anyway I thought you all would like to know about Shaggy. Enjoy your Octopus while you have them. It really breaks your heart when they leave.