Cuttle Surprise

Discussion in 'Cuttlefish Care' started by SteveMcKay, Apr 1, 2013.

  1. SteveMcKay

    SteveMcKay Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Tried raising cuttlefish from eggs twice...once in Oct and the other at the end of Dec '12. Both failed a week or two after hatch. After the Dec newborns died or vanished I decided I was rushing things and would learn much more about keeping a marine tank. Added a few fish... a spiny urchin, peppermint shrimp, etc. Things were looking good and I decide maybe I would just stick with a reef tank. Then the Amphipods and shrimp slowly disappeared....

    Well low and behold this guy popped up last week.



    I assume he escaped the "nursery net" in Dec and remained in stealth mode until the cuttle sized food ran out...
     
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  2. magnetar68

    magnetar68 O. vulgaris Registered

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    wow, that is a surprise. he may start eating the fish at some point.
     
  3. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    That is just plain COOL! It would not be overly surprising with octopuses but we don't have surprise cuttles in any of the journals. You might want (but may not be able) to remove the damsel. If you can't remove it be sure it is well fed as they get quite territorial and often pick on other animals.
     
  4. SteveMcKay

    SteveMcKay Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    There are actually 3 damsels and they are impossible to catch. I was thinking they are keeping the cuttle in the rocks... I have not seen him in the open areas at all so far.
     
  5. tonmo

    tonmo Titanites Staff Member Webmaster Moderator

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    Great vid! Shared this thread on the TONMO Facebook page :thumbsup:
     
  6. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    You might check on a fish keeping site like Reef Central for ideas on catching the damsels using a DIY one-way trap (I don't know if good solutions exist). You would have to monitor it and be sure it was out away from the rocks as well as well lighted to keep out the cuttle but something passive is going to be more successful (and less disruptive) than any attempt at active (as I believe you have already determined :roll:) capture. Your little guy is obviously hardy but I agree with your thinking about the fish keeping him shy.
     
  7. SteveMcKay

    SteveMcKay Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Awesome!

    I have to say I am really enjoying this...they are as smart and alien as I had hoped. I did an emergency order of grass shrimp which showed up last Friday and already the little guy seems to know that when I knock on the glass a shrimp or two are on the way.
     
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  8. SteveMcKay

    SteveMcKay Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Thats a great idea DW... I have made more than a few Crawdad and minnow traps back in the day. Bet I could rig something up with nylon mesh and such. Thanks for the idea.
     
  9. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    If you come up with something that works, please include it in this or a separate journal in the Tank Talk forum as the problem is common (albeit not your situation) and a ready reference on a working technique would be great. My son tried to be helpful in removing a Chromis while we were out of town some years ago (not in a ceph tank but I wanted to convert the tank and wanted to move the fish). Ultimately he caught it but ended up fatally damaging my clam and disrupting the tank doing so.
     
  10. L8 2 RISE

    L8 2 RISE Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Fish traps that let you put food in on one end and have a sort of door on the other always work great for me. Another idea is to wait until the lights are completely out and the fish are asleep. Take a bright flashlight and shine it at them, they will be shocked and so easier to catch with the net.
     
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  11. GPO87

    GPO87 Sepia elegans Staff Member Moderator

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    How very cool! And a wonderful surprise indeed!
     
  12. SteveMcKay

    SteveMcKay Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    As I was acquiring the needed nylon and other plastics for a proper SW fish trap Little Guy decided to take care of the situation all by himself. Woke up Sunday morning to a pale blue fish head being picked over by the cleanup crew and by lights out Sunday a second blue fish head was stuck in the protein skimmer intake. That’s a lot of flesh in a day but I have no doubt Little Guy is the culprit.

    The sight of seeing two dead fish I have grown to enjoy over the last few months was actually a little bothersome to be honest…. And this from a guy that has caught and cooked my fair share of fish.

    Anyhoot... Since I did not notice Little Guy until he was four months old I assume dead/frozen food is out of the question at this point? I have been trying frozen shrimp since he made himself known but interest is nil.
     
  13. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Ouch! On Peter Godfrey-Smith's (TONMO PGS) Giant Cuttlefish blog he posted an entry entitled eat that throws his and others' views on meat eating, starting with the topic of eating octopuses. Being a meat eater, the short version :roll: of my comment was that once an animal is considered a pet, it is hard to consider it as food.

    In this case I suspect the cuttle did away with a nuisance that could harm it (and probably pestered it). CaptFish's first experience with fish and a cephalopod (an octopus) was more costly and more painful.

    I would not give up on feeding frozen but I suspect first, you will need to get Little Guy accustomed to being fed and a feeding time which will likely require live food to start. We don't have too many journals (and those we have would be quite old) starting with an animal this age but Thales might be a good one to PM for some suggestions.
     
  14. magnetar68

    magnetar68 O. vulgaris Registered

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    get some frozen whole bait shrimp about 1" to 2" in length. get some 80lb test fishing line. i have about 18" of the line glued to the end of a foot long stick. i pierce the shrimp with the end of the line and go fishing. as long as you make the movements of a live shrimp the cuttle will strike it and eat it. it may take some time and you may need to get the shrimp close to the shy cuttle.
     
  15. SteveMcKay

    SteveMcKay Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Thank you everyone for the input... any help and comments are highly appreciated. I feel like I am someone who has never raised kids but suddenly finds myself with a hungry and hormonal 14 year old son to take care of.

    Little Guy certainly is a hungry little alien. He went through the original 60 grass shrimp AND ate the 3 damsels.... all in about a week and a half. Unfortunately the 200 shrimp that showed up on Thursday were
     
  16. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Are you using table shrimp with your "fishing" experiment? Something is fishy :tomato: if it floats as even the smallest pieces we feed our two fish sink (without fishing line). If anyone sews see if they have a spool of plastic thread. It is very thin should not float the shrimp (assumes the line is the problem). Another thought would be dental floss. My one concern is that the very thin might get eaten.
     
  17. cuttlegirl

    cuttlegirl Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    What if you put the shrimp on one of those long. thin bamboo skewers? Then you could make it more the way you want. It sounds like the little guy is hungry enough to eat frozen.
     
  18. magnetar68

    magnetar68 O. vulgaris Registered

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    With my feeding device and the 80lb test fishing line, I can maneuver the shrimp anywhere in the tank I want, even through rock caves. I got the 80lb test at a local bait shop. I also have a Pet Club and PETCO near me that sell cheap freshwater feeder shrimp. The cuttles will eat these with gusto and are good alternative to use in a pinch.
     
  19. SteveMcKay

    SteveMcKay Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    I have been trying the tail end of raw "medium sized" shrimp from Kroger. After I read DW's post I tossed one in for a test without the fishing line and it sank very well... so seems like the line I was using is the cause of my floating issue. Will try the bamboo stick, and something like a sinking fly line.... hard to find 80lb test in Colorado :^)
     
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  20. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Steve,
    I TRY to remember to suggest new members edit their profile to display a location hint (city, state/province and country if not US is suggested but members use more creative identifiers as well :grin:). This helps with some of the feeding questions (big difference if you live in coastal FL or Denver :grin:) as well as to allow member a chance to share local resources and occasional min-TONMOcons
     

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