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Bored octopus.. is it bad?

nuro

Pygmy Octopus
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#1
-- i was recently switched to night shift so i am not home 4 nights a week now. ive had my octo for 3 monthes and i typically would play with him when he would come out at night. since i switched i havent been able to and, beign nocturnal, is already asleep when i get home in the morning.

-since the switch he hasnt been coming out much even when i am home at night. should i be worried? water quality is still fine, he still has a healthy apitite but is just hiding more. this is my first octo so i'm not sure what to expect in terms of behaivor
 

cuttlegirl

Colossal Squid
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#2
How big is your octopus? It is possible that your octopus is preparing to lay eggs. It is also possible that it changed its behavior since you changed your behavior.
 

DWhatley

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#3
I have found with mine that considency is important over a fairly long period (daily for a month or more). Missing a day or two of interaction (like being gone a weekend) will impact socialization but only briefly. I am not sure about long term changes like 4-5 days of no interaction and then 2 days interacting. It is possible the octo will adjust but I still don't have a good feel for their sense of time and memory.

Brooding behavior, on the other hand, is natural and very strongly part of their physical make-up.
 

nuro

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#4
yep, you guys nailed that one. she laid eggs.

ok, so next question: ive read alot of varying reports but how much longer should i expect her to live,and in the mean time is there anything special i should do as far as lighting and food for her?

im goignt o guess the eggs are unfertilized since ive have had her for monthes and she lived solo. she tripled in size sicne i got her.
 

gholland

Haliphron Atlanticus
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#6
We had Varys a month before she laid fertile eggs and Dwhatley had Trapper for two months before she laid fertile eggs.

Varys lived a month after the eggs hatched, but she ate very small quantities during the brooding period. Trapper lived even longer. On the other end of the spectrum, Beluga ate almost nothing while brooding and died on the fourth day of hatching. You can search the journal forum for those names.

I would keep the lighting consistent with whatever you've been doing up to this point.

Do you know what species your octopus is?
 

nuro

Pygmy Octopus
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#7
i dont use the lights in the tank at all, other then when cleaning, it gets and always has gotten slightly diffused(to keep the heat down) natural sunlight for about 4 - 6 hours a day

im not sure of the species im in fl so im assuming carribian but it was labled as atlantic so who knows. the eggs are suprisingly pretty big ive been trying to read up on raising them but i dunno how much luck ill have.

edit* i cant seem to find anywhere if im supposed to move them away from the mother when they hatch.. it already a low flow tank. anyone have input?
 

DWhatley

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#8
The mother should not be a problem. She will barely eat, if at all during the brooding and afterwards. You may want to find a large breeder net (possibly a couple) to place in the aquarium (include small shells for dens) so that you can keep tiny food close to the young and keep the fry out of the filtration.
 

nuro

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#9
she is eating a little, but ya, not much at all. ive got a ton of shells in there and have plany more i can put in. as far as the breeder net goes, i already have puchased a large prefilter for the intake but im not sure how strung the "suck" is goign to be and if they can manage to pull themselves off. id be afraid a bredder net would just get ripped down by the mother.
 

sedna

Larger Pacific Striped Octopus
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#10
Once the eggs hatch, I doubt mom will be interested in doing much at all, so babies in a breeder net won't be a problem. In my experience (there have been others to the contrary) once the babies hatch, mom will hang out in her den area and slowly die- it's hard to watch, but respiration will become more and more labored until she passes. She won't show interest in the babies!

This is very exciting because large egged babies actually have a chance of making it! It would be great if you could post any pics of mom to get an ID. What day (the date) did she start brooding? Please keep us all filled in on this experiment, it would be SO cool to have a source tank raised eggs!
 

nuro

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#11
i'm not sure of the exact date she started becuase i initially thoight she was just pissed i had switched schedules and not coming out. what's the incubation period on these eggs? i would guess shes been brooding for about 3 weeks...which seems too long to me :/ i dont have a direct link as i'm at work now, but there's a video of her up at my myspace page; myspace.com/unley i think. check the videos section for her.

also: i was lookin gonline for breeder nets, and forgive the noob-ilarity here, but these all seem to be like box's that go in the tank. is that what i'm supposed to put them in. it would seem better to me to just make sure they dont get sucked into the intake and let them roam the tank free. correct me if i'm wrogn here.
 

DWhatley

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#12
Both the in-tank and the in-breeder net (yes, it is a frame supported net that sits in the main tank for water quality but contains the small animals for safety and food density) have had successes and failures. I prefer the breeder net because you can localize the food and observe the young (they don't do a lot for many months). They will completely disappear in the main tank (they start out the size of a hungry tick) and may starve. That being said, one of my mercs survived 10 months on his own in a 45 gallon tank (I often thought he had died). Eventually, I found him alive, captured him and put him in a smaller aquarium where he dies an old man at over 13 months. Depending on your hatch count, you might try both. Be sure to place small shells in a breeder for them to hide in.
 

nuro

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#13
whats the incubation period for the eggs? mine still havent hatched. The mom is still eating as long as she can reach the food w/out leavign the cave but im concerned the eggs are unfertilized :/
 

sedna

Larger Pacific Striped Octopus
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#14
If it's been mentioned I've forgotten- what type of octo is this? My aculeatus' brooding times were 3 weeks exactly. I haven't seen it stated implicitly, but I think large eggs take longer to incubate- up to 8 weeks even! If you know what type you have, then you can find journals of the same kind of octo to get an idea what you can do to prepare. It can be a fun experiment if you're up for it!
 

sedna

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#15
Oh, I went back and read that your eggs are big. Has it been 8 weeks yet? Have you read the posts in the sub- forum here about "raising octos from eggs?" They can hold sperm inside for a long time before they are ready to lay the eggs, so don't give up hope yet!
 

gholland

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#16
Incubation time will vary by species and water temp. Our two batches of merc eggs took 40-45 days at ~76F.

D: I think you mean 13 MONTHS for Wiley, yes?
 

nuro

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#18
ya i did read over the raising octo from eggs forums, i think its an atlantic red from what i can figure. tank temp fulctuates between 74 and 76 daily. shes still eatign a little and theres been no change in the eggs.


edit* its been about 8 or 9 weeks at this point since i noticed the chnage in her behavoiur but, again i dont know exactly when they were laid.

ps: this is so depressing; watchign her just sit in her cave and not coem out :-(
 

sedna

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#19
I know from experience hew depressing this stage is. You're doing your best to give her what she needs, and that's the best you can do!
 

nuro

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#20
so i checked today and most fo the eggs were gone. um.. now what? i check every day and suddenly poof gone... im scared they hatched and now ill never find them.
 

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