banded octopus vs Caribbean two spot

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by natalie1404, Sep 22, 2013.

  1. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    hi i have currently set up a 3 and half foot tank and octo proofed it but i dont know weither to go for the banded as i CAN NOT
    find any info stats size behaviour ie if its interactive and playful and its fave food and stuff when i search for info on it google just brings up info on mimic orrr the caribbean two spot witch looks gorgeous and is known to be interactive and playful ummmm i just have no concept of size difference and things like that having not seen either in the flesh so could anybody help me with info on the banded octopus and your oppinion on them both thanks to anybody that replies :smile2: :smile2:
     
  2. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Unfortunately a "banded" octopus is not much information as that is not a well known common name for an species. Do you have information on its origination? \ The most likely animal, assuming an impor,t would be a Wunderpus photogenicus, a small species from Indonesia. This species is only recently named and lives in a disappearing muck habitat. Typically they don't do well in an aquarium (there have been a few exceptions) and have little to do with their keepers. TONMO lists them in exotics, recommends not buying them and to dissuade their sale as their numbers are unknown but appear to be in danger.

    Sourcing O. hummelincki (Caribbean Two Spot) may be difficult as we have not seen many in the last year. For a long time they were imported from Haiti but that source has been all but non-existent since the earthquake.
     
  3. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    i have sourced a two spot well i havnt but the shop i go to has, they deal with octipus quite alot my baby will be at the shop on thursday yay very excited my first of these beautiful creatures as i am a newby :smile2: :smile2:
     
  4. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    your the lady with monty arnt you iv watched all your videos of him on youtube he is so cute i hope to play with mine as you do :smile2:
     
  5. cuttlegirl

    cuttlegirl Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    Welcome, how exciting! Can you give us some information about your set up? How long has your tank been up and running? What kind of filtration do you have? Do you have anything else in the tank?
     
  6. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    You will have some time to attempt a decent shot for identification while it is acclimating but not much of a chance to take pictures for a couple of weeks afterwards. I suggest setting up both your camera and your acclimation equipment before you go pick it up. Use a tripod for the camera if you have one so you can easily move it out of the way but still take steady pictures.

    Keep in mind that what you (or the store) buy is not necessarily what comes through the door, especially with octopus species.
     
  7. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Yes, Monty was a gem but I never determined his species and I have looked off and on since I had him. He was an excellent size for a home aquarium and I keep hoping another will show up.
     
  8. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    thanks, my tank has been running 2 years using external fluvel 205 and v2 600 skimmer have a 4ft tank but put a partition wall in to stop my lil monster getting to all pipework and stuff and a full glass sheet for on top hoping this is enough to stop my new baby getting out it looks octopus proof i have moved all my marine fish and critters to a different tank dont want to risk leaving anythink in ther for him/her to munch on going to look at what i can put in with him at a later date when hes settled abit this is a quick pick of when partition went in :smile2:
     

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  9. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    does that sound and look ok or am i missing anythink :smile2:
     
  10. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Natalie,
    You might want to add some cleanup crew right away for two reasons. One octopuses are messy and the waste is going to put an instant load on the tank and two, adding animals later is more likely to make them snacks if your octo is accustomed to anything you place into the tank being supper (so anything you DO add/replace, do so when the octo is asleep and definitely no where near feeding time). This applies mostly to hermits and snails and they are not safe from any octopus but are worth putting in and replacing (and will give a small food supply until it is used to being fed). Keepers have mixed results with octopuses eating them. None of mine seem to bother the red legs with the exception of O. vulgaris (I think they will eat almost anything that is in the Echinoderm phylum). Snails have mixed results as well, most typically, if the snail has an operculum (hard foot it uses as a door), they survive, especially if the octopus has other options (again I exclude O. vulgaris :grin:).

    My favorite octo-safe cleaner is a brittle star (I usually have 2 per octopus) and the one I like the best and have in all my tanks is commonly called a red brittle star (Ophiocoma wendti). These are, hardy, long lived, fairly active, can be hand fed and often brightly colored. Sometimes they will come out during the day and they often den with my octopuses (if I can't find the octo, I will look for Pesky, the name I give all the reds). Another in the sea star family I like to keep that will consume left-overs (in spite of what some of the literature says) is the red thorny sea star (Echinaster echinophorus). These are day active and can be very brightly colored (somewhere I have a video where one insists on being the star of an octopus vid). This is the only starfish I have had absolute survival success with (save one unknown nocturnal I have had in the nano for over a year). Octopuses won't eat echinoderms but some are better than others. Avoid anything with sharp spines (rock urchins for one, pencils seem to be fine - cautuion they have their own peculiarities and may eat things you don't want eaten but won't hurt or be disturbed by the octopus), sand dollars don't seem to do well in aquariums and you have to be very careful with cucs. Nudis, on the other hand, will most likely be eaten before the day is out.

    If you want a little color, gorgonians are fine but place them out of any obvious paths of travel. Octopuses do not go around things! Adding them later is OK but the octopus is likely to move it or even be annoyed with the addition to its territory. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Syg8RPpXDh4 :grin:).

    If you watch Maya's video in the above link you will also notice polyps. These are more difficult to recommend. The ones I have in the octo tanks are propagated from two sets of probably the same species that I have found octo safe but I don't have a name. Many (possibly most, including zoanthids) have too much sting to place in the tank. I have had to remove others and only use these now. If you do try some, add them on their own rock that can easily be removed. If you see any kind of touch and withdraw reaction, take them out.

    With your permission (and a lot of luck), I will move this thread to the journals section when your new guy arrives so you will have a full log of this journey. If you would rather journal the animal separately (hoping you are going to keep us updated), start a new thread with its name (I can change that part later if you don't have one immediately, poor Onn kept his Octopus with No Name status because that is what we call him), use unnamed, to be named or something similar, followed by a dash and the species (or what you are expecting). Any moderator can change the subject title later on request.

    Can't wait to see your first animal and read your reactions.
     
  11. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    I edited your post with the pictures by clicking on the "insert image" link beside each photo so that they will display directly in the post.

    I also noted your black box and will mention an experiment I am trying but have not looked to see if I have any results for yet. I added a 6" sand bed to the bottom of a similar enclosure. Mine was originally used for filtration but we drilled the tank and added a sump so the box is empty and probably more practical for this experiment than one with hardware but it would depend on the depth of your hardware since the sand be would be undisturbed. It will take as long as a year before I can expect results (trying to reduce nitrates) but it has been set up long enough that I need to have a look.
     
  12. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    thanks went rock pooling yesterday and collected some snails and crabs (green shore and velvet swimming crabs) there the most common on our beaches so hope these guys are ok for him hunted high and low for bait shops with no luck ! I have had my eye on a blue sea star (linckia lavigata) for a while as they are quite self serficiant and eat anything thats there algea/poo n stuff do you think this would be suitable , i am definately very excited and nervous (lol dont know why just in hope that my little guy takes to me and never having had one of these amazing creatures hope i do everything to my best ability for him ) i will defo be doing a journal of our journey together when i get my little guy :smile2: :smile2:
     
  13. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    maya is a little cuttie :smile2: :smile2:
     
  14. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    My babys new home so far :smile2:
     

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  15. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Any crab the octopus will eat should be nutritiously good but remove/disable any claws (usually removing an the small half of a claw - or the tip, depending upon the pincher - is all you need to do). You can remove full claws and freeze them but not whole crabs (I am inland so we shop the Asian markets for live blue crabs and scrounge the tanks for loose claws). The octopus' mantle should be larger than the crab. If live crabs are left in the tank, be sure you watch for regeneration of the claw. Typically, the claws are not fatal but in an aquarium, infection from any wound is always a concern. However, if a crab is large enough, the dining experience can be reversed, putting octopus arms on the crab menu. If you keep your live crabs in a bucket, be sure it has very tall sides (like an empty salt bucket), change the water frequently, and place something in the the center for them to climb on as most shore crabs need to breath on land.

    Check your bait shops for live shrimp when you are next out looking for octo food. You can keep a couple in the tank for a huntable dinner and freeze the rest for good fresh seafood. Sometimes the octopuses will find them immediately (again, if you put a live animal in the tank after it is accustomed to hand feeding, it will be considered food more quickly) and sometimes the shrimp will appear to be accepted as a tank mate for a week or more. Being inland ours don't get very fresh food (we buy market shrimp) but when we do get to the coast we bring a few live shrimp back in aerated buckets.

    Linckia's are notoriously difficult (reading suggests the major problem is handling prior to arriving at the hobbyist tank so one that has been alive at an LSF for several weeks may do well). It is suspected that PH changes are responsible for the disintegration of these and other stars. Not having had good luck with several imports and almost 100% success with the Caribbeans, I don't buy imports. Various flavors of Vibro are common with Caribbean animals and I suspect this may be more the problem I have had but that is second guessing and could be making 4 our of 2 + x.
     
  16. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Also, cautionary notes on handling. Octopuses are shy and not all of them are receptive to interacting, especially to touching. Some will be out front the minute you approach the tank where others will only show up when they are hungry. Very young animals (under an estimated 5 months) will almost never be seen and you have to locate their den and encourage them to eat (especially if dinner is not alive).

    Always let the animal approach you, not the other way around (you can encourage by scratching on the tank or moving your fingers but don't chase). First encounters will be sampling your fingers as food items and I separate play time from feeding time. Neal prefers to play after they have a beak full of food but we have seen them shift food away from their beaks :grin:. Initially, it is usually a touch and go type contact. When they get bolder, they will latch on and try to pull you fingers to their mouth. Don't panic, gentle resistance will usually stop the initial undesired behavior but as they become more bold, you may need to stroke the back of the arms or gently (easier said than done) remove the arms using your other hand. Don't offer your hand near the live rock. This gives them a surface to grab and their strength is unexpectedly strong when they have good purchase on the substrate. It is much more difficult to disentangle yourself and your rock work will take a beating (with some animals, resetting live rock becomes a monthly routine). Some, like Monty and most hummelincki as well as the small nocturnal Macropus become gentle very quickly and like to have their mantle rubbed (or will squeeze through your fingers/hand). I think this is more like scratching an itch than enjoyment of human attention but is definitely fun for the human. Others never stop being aggressive. Little Bit (O. vulgaris) really seemed to enjoy play, always came to the front of the tank and suggested she wanted attention but was never gentle and some really seem to shun their human keepers. Each one is a unique experience.

    One other thing I should always mention to new keepers that sometimes is not understood. The warm water animals only live for between 10 (dwarfs) and 18 (vulgaris) months with 12 months being the expected life span. Virtually all warm water species and most cold water animals (generally with slightly longer lifespans) are wild caught so the age is unknown and very few are less than 5 months old (likely because of the above mentioned seclusion).

    Finally, I have observed that the behavior you witness for the first two weeks will not be the behavior that follows. Often an animal seems very interactive and outgoing while it is acclimating to tank life. Once it is truly acclimated (roughly 1 month) new behavior patterns appear and you will have to work with the animal regularly to have the most enjoyment of its company.

    Be sure to see my notes on a few correction I suggested to your tank in the comments section, the grill for the sump/equipment area is a major concern.
     
  17. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Can you add a Koralia or other water movement device (protect the intake, I use a media bag) at the far end and put the bubbler in the "sump/equipment" area? Roy has seen a few cases where bubblers will put bubbles up into the mantle and can cause death. If you can't move the aerator, place it up close to the top of the tank. You may not need the extra water movement of the Koralia but I suspect you will need to push from the far end, especially with the nice LR denning area in that position.

    You will also have a definite problem with the grill that lets water into the sump/equipment area. I would suggest placing a very course sponge behind it so there is no place to explore but the water will still enter. The opening are big enough for most animals to slide through (keep in mind they can get through anything as big as their eyes (actually the beak is the restriction but the sizing is about the same). IME, hummelincki are less likely to squeeze through small openings but this is still a serious concern.
     
  18. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    thanks for advice bubbler is out will put some sponge behind the grill the holes arnt as big as they appear inside the upward parts you can see are also grills that are only spaced 1mm apart but will put some sponge behind aswell to be on the safe side thankyou for your input it is greatly appreciated i also will take on bord everthing you have said about interacting i know they can be shy i was going to let him come to me anyway i dont want to push myself on him as thats his space :smile2: :smile2: sorry cant insert image like you seem to be doing am on a tablet thankyou for opening them :smile2:
     

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  19. natalie1404

    natalie1404 Blue Ring Registered

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    lol it did it
     
  20. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Lol, It looks like you figured out the insert. I have an instructional post but need to update it before sending you there.

    I did not see the grills on the black panel. You will likely be able to remove the sponge but compare the opening to the eyes AND be sure that poking arms cannot reach the intake for the pump.

    It looks like you are ready for tomorrow.
     

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