Changed My Mind!

Discussion in 'Cuttlefish Care' started by Brock Fluharty, Mar 29, 2006.

  1. Brock Fluharty

    Brock Fluharty Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    I have decided against an octopus for a few reasons...

    1) They are very short lived.
    2) They are fairly hard to identify.
    3) Few CB species available.
    4) Large tank requirements.

    I have decided FOR a few cuttlefish for a few reasons...

    1) They seem more active than most octopods.
    2) There are only 2 species regularly available in aquariums.
    3) The species I am getting (sepia bandensis of course) get only 4 inches.
    4) They will live after breeding.

    Now...I have a question...

    How many do you think I could keep in a 40 gallon tank? This is a 40 gallon long. It is very long, and very tall, but not very wide. I plan on getting a good amount of tonga branch live rock for them to play in, like a jungle gym, along with various macros, mostly reds. I might want to try some nice zoanthids, and some mushrooms, if I can get a decent light on the tank. I was thinking around 4 or so cuttles, but i'm not sure how many would be recommended, and I am sorry if 4 sounds completely ridiculous. Thanks for your help!

    Brock Fluharty
     
  2. bobwonderbuns

    bobwonderbuns Vampyroteuthis Supporter

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    Brock, how much tank space does each cuttle need and how big do they get? We have a 60 gallon long freshwater tank and that's one of the considerations we had to take into account when getting fish for it. Basically there is a formula (not sure what it is for salt tanks) that each fish gets x amount of space. Something to consider when making your decision.

    By the way, when you get the cuttles, we want pictures pictures pictures!!! :grin:
     
  3. Brock Fluharty

    Brock Fluharty Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Yeah, i've read that formula, but I forget what it is...does anyone know how many sepia bandensis you can have in a 40 gallon?
     
  4. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    Gee, I don't know. Maybe there's a good article somewhere out there on keeping Sepia bandensis...
     
  5. bobwonderbuns

    bobwonderbuns Vampyroteuthis Supporter

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    Ok, I looked it up in my saltwater aquarium book -- they are recommending the 1 inch of fish to 4 gallons of water for the first six months. Gradually increase fish density to 1 inch per 2 gallons. "For example a 40 gallon aquarium should contain no more than 10 inches of fish for the first six months... After six months additional fish may be added gradually to increase the total number of inches to 20."

    So I guess it depends on how big the you choose cuttles will likely get.
     
  6. Brock Fluharty

    Brock Fluharty Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Well, sepia bandensis get up to 4 inches, so 2 for the first 6 months, and 4 for the later 6 months? I want to get eggs from someone, since they ship better than ones that are already hatched. They would also (I assume) be cheaper, although I know that the babies are hard to feed, I am in good with all of my LFS's, so I can get fiddler crabs, ghost shrimp, guppies, you name it. I am going to use LOA liighting fixtures, supplemented with actinics to make them less ugly, for the corals, and macro/stargrass. Anybody know of anyone who currently has too many eggs to handle or anyone who breeds in general?
     
  7. Brock Fluharty

    Brock Fluharty Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Also, is that rule the same for invertebrates such as cuttles?
     
  8. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    Seeing as cuttlefish have higher metabolism and generally secrete more ammonia than a fish, have a more bulbous shape and as such more volume of flesh per unit length than a fish, and often swim faster than fish in a direction in which they can't see, those rules probably aren't very applicable :)

    Dan
     
  9. Brock Fluharty

    Brock Fluharty Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Ok. I will just stick with two if everyone thinks that would be a good amount. I want eggs because I want to figure out which are males and females, and keep one of each for myself (if I can successfully raise them of course) and sell the rest off.
     
  10. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    I'm sorry if I'm being a little hard on you--I still have quite a few hours work to do on my proposal tonight and am feeling a bit sarcastic.

    If you haven't already, read Righty's article about Sepia bandensis. Hit the "Articles" button at the top of the screen then "Ceph Care" and scroll down to the bottom. He talks about a lot of the things you're wondering about.

    Dan
     
  11. Illithid

    Illithid Vampyroteuthis Supporter

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    Dan is exactly right. The article is excellent. Definitely a 1st read for anyone setting up a tank or even considering cuttles of any species.

    One major point...cephs metabolize as if 3-4x their weight in fish, so 3-4 fish would equal 1 cuttle. That is why everyone rants about skimmers all the time, and to filter as 3-4x the tank volume.
     
  12. Brock Fluharty

    Brock Fluharty Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Yes, I already read that article. It was very informative, but I just wasn't sure how many per 20 gallons or whatever.
     
  13. mucktopus

    mucktopus Haliphron Atlanticus Staff Member Moderator

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    When considering lighting don't go with something too bright. When I've seen them out during the day they've always been deeper than about 20m. Even in clear waters light is a little dim down there.
     
  14. Brock Fluharty

    Brock Fluharty Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    In the article, he recommends LOA lights, so I guess they are ok.
     
  15. William Tyson

    William Tyson Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    what are the deminsions of the tank, what is the filtration ect.
     
  16. Brock Fluharty

    Brock Fluharty Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    I will have to measure the tank. The filtration currently consists of a penguin filter. It's big, but I don't know what model. I am going to get a Seaclone 100 skimmer, but I don't have it yet. The tank is around 36 inches long, 16 inches high, and 12 inches wide or something like that.
     
  17. Paradox

    Paradox Haliphron Atlanticus Supporter

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    I would recommend 2. For the first 4-5 months you will think you can keep more in there, but near reproductive maturity, the bandensis become very territorial and competitive. Aggression becomes much more frequent. I would try to keep them at even numbers. In an ideal situation, you want couples. However, you wont have a guess at thier sex until at least 4-5 months.

    A single mated pair would do great in a 40.

    If you feel you want more then this, I would suggest 2 mated pairs over having 3 cuttles where one is single. The third will get picked on a lot. 2 mated pairs will mostly stick with themselves.

    Ive learned a great deal from raising bandensis from eggs to thier current age of 9 months. One thing that I suggest is to get as strong/big a skimmer as you can afford. The skimmer is the heart of my filtration. Any slight waver in its ability to function properly, you will observe die offs. Cuttles are very sensitive to changes and intolerant to the slightest of bad water quality. Much more then any octo Ive ever kept.

    For lighting, I would use 2 55 watt power compacts and have each on a timer with both being on at the same time for only 4 hours a day. That is, one can be on for 8-10 hours a day while the other only is on for 4. Too much light will make them less active. I had a blind cuttle, but I dont associate it with lighting.

    In terms of corals, I would sugest zoos, mushrooms, ricordias, star polyps..etc. It has been suggested to not keep stining lps type corals with cephs. However, I have to admit I do have a hammer in my cuttle tank, but Ive never seen any signs of it stinging or harming a cuttle. Ive seen the bandesis sit on the coral and show no signs of distress..

    Good luck and if you have any questions just ask!
    You can see my experiences and tank set up on my webpage in my sig.
     
  18. Brock Fluharty

    Brock Fluharty Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Thanks! Yeah, I think I will stick with 2, and if they are both male, or both female, I will sell one and get another or trade or something. Does anyone know where I can get some eggs?
     
  19. Mizu

    Mizu Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    funny after keeping A bimac and an S. officnalis when my cuttle dies ill get another octo
    they are more acitve and interactive than cuttles.
    My Cuttle never tried to grab me and only rarely eats out of my hand. My Bimac Megas was always in my hand looking for food and being a clown. always ate out of my hand and was always looking around and playing with the castle and toys i gave him.
    eh
    I think octos are more interesting to keep even if the cuttles are more exotic and colorful
     
  20. Paradox

    Paradox Haliphron Atlanticus Supporter

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    To make things even more difficult...

    There is not much information regarding mixing bandensis that were reared apart.

    That is, they may fight and kill each other or they may not. Bandensis can be kept in groups, but this has only been proven for groups that grew up together since young. I know mixing adults that are wild caught can result in fighting and death. So if it turns out your 2 are the same sex, it is uncertain if just trading one out will be successful. However, we may find that captive raised individuals reared apart can get along.

    If anyone has had experience with this, I would like to know as well.

    My dillemna at the moment involves three 5 month old bandensis that I have. I wonder what would happen if I put them in the main tank with my 9 month olds. I may put them in a clear divider and see how the 9 month olds react.

    If you can keep a larger number until they are old enough to pair off, you can then trade/sell the rest off to responsible Tonmo members. You should be able to keep 6 or so in a 40 until they get to 4-5 months, which is about the time youll be able to sex them anyways..Also, expect to lose a couple along the journey. Regardless of how careful or well thought out your system is, Ive learned that sh*t happens. Bandensis rearing is still in its infancy, so we are still learnign as we go..Unfortuantely, these lessons have a price..

    Also make sure you thoroughly think out your feeding situation for feeding an army of cuttles gets $$$$ real fast!
     

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