early stages of looking to get my own ceph friend

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by tristan, Jun 15, 2009.

  1. tristan

    tristan Larval Mass Registered

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    hey, im new to this thread... quite bio on me, im 15 years old. iv been reading up on this site for quit a while now but just recently took to the forms. iv always had a love for animals. birds cats dogs or even fish.

    my uncle (who is a wildlife expert(and has had severl exotic marine animals) and i wish to get an octopus.
    i feel with the proper knowlage ill do a great job taking care of a ceph.

    i want to be as prepaired as possible so i do not plan on even getting the tank for quite some time the more info the better.

    as of right now im building a "shopping list"



    im wondering..


    ceph___
    what sub species is the best for beging?-i preffer small

    male or female?

    young but how young?

    please list some pro's and con's


    tank___
    25gal?
    50gal? iv read this is an approprite size
    75 gal?


    glass or acrlyic( is there any mojor difference?)


    equiptment___

    from what i have read i need aproximently 2-3 times the size of the skimmer filter ect.for the tank im getting?


    what do you think ill need?
    what size?
    any specific brands?




    please guys, help me out im really looking to gather as much info from the thread


    i dont care if your respond is a simple link but and info is greatly appreciated


    thanks!
     
  2. Tommycs

    Tommycs Wonderpus Supporter

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    Well once you have read most of the articles on this site, then you can start thinking about the tank and the species. I'm pretty sure male is recommended for several reasons. As you probably know, an octopuses life span is not very long (1-2 years). so in this way, the younger, the better, however when it is young you need to provide smaller foods, make your tank more escape proof, and it is overall a little more work to deal with a baby. a fifty gallon tank is fine for a bimac which is one of the most popular octopuses. However, a briareus would be more comfortable in a 75 gallon (because of long arms). I think that glass is better, due to the occasional problem of an octopus get a little bit stuck on the acrylic, but it can happen with glass too so i really don't think there is too much of a difference. As for the protein skimmer, and filter, just as you said, 2 or more times oversized is great, I have no brands, but if you look in the tank talk section of the forum, than I am sure you can find some. I know all of this information by skimming through threads, now some of what I said could be wrong, but you can always find out the answer to all of your questions by merely searching different things, and browsing through different sections. I am no expert, so some of my information may be wrong, so please search the answers to your question and you will get the right answer and much more information on them.
     
  3. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    IMO

    Octopus - species and sex

    You will learn that obtaining an octopus is going to be hit or miss for species, age and sex (best odds are on the sex - 50/50 chance on receiving what you want :wink:).

    That being established, generally speaking keeping a male is most desirable because it is likely to live and interact longer. There are only a three commonly kept octopuses that provide a possibility of raising a few offspring (the nocturnal dwarf, mercatoris, briareus (none recorded to survive in the last 4 years but they are a large egged species) and the large egged bimac (there are two similar and similarly named "bimacs" one is large egged and the other small egged but distinguishing the adults is difficult). Roy has been experimenting with another dwarf but availability is almost zero.

    As noted, looking for a specific species is daunting since the suppliers rarely know what species they are selling. There is one collector in the keys that knows and collects briareus and is species reliable (this is the only species he sells). There is another in the Tampa area (sorry, no link) that can identify Vulgaris (which should have a larger than 75 gallon tank). Most of the remaining suppliers really don't have a clear knowledge of what their whole sellers send and only a few will provide photos of the actual animal. If the octo is known to come from Indonesia, it will likely be in the adopus complex and is commonly aculeatus (and usually quite old).

    Before you complete building out your environment, watch for new posts to the availability thread to get a feel for what others are finding and track the journals as new ones are kept. I would suggest :roll: not reading the avilability thread after you have set up your tank as sometimes an available octopus is too tempting when the tank and keeper are not ready.

    Aquarium

    If you choose the 75 over the 50 (forget anything smaller) you have a little more "wiggle room" for species and individual differences. As you have likely read, they don't live long and you will likely keep more than one so setting up your initial tank for any species has advantages. If you choose the 50ish size because of location, allow for a larger sump. This won't provided the swimming room but will help with water quality.

    Put some reading time into the tank forum (as I noted on your intro). There are many designs pictured and discussed and can help you make better choices for your own design. All marine aquariums are custom and never out of the box so enjoy some of the options presented and get a feel for what will work for your environment.

    Using a sump comes stongly recommend, no matter what you decide to put in the sump. I am a strong believer in thin argonite substrate in the main tank and a large sump that does not contain substrate or refugium elements but other will strongly promote a different combination.

    It is far easier to put holes in an acrylic tank than in a glass one but both are doable. The acrylics scratch easily (especially the newer acrylics) on the INSIDE (the outside is really not a problem). If photography is a point of interest, glass will provide better optics and fewer scratches. If you are buying used, acrylic is likely to be safer if the use of chemicals is unknown and will not be a leak concern (assuming you test it for leaks initially - homemade acrylics can be problematic but a leak will show with a water test). Any tank with silicone sealing is a potential leak concern and a used one can house deadly chemicals (copper in particular) that cannot be detected (contamination assumes the history is unknown). The retention of copper in an acrylic tank is unclear. Because Neal and I usually start with a freshwater tank and do all of our own modifications, we are prone to acrylics in spite of the scratching issues. Be aware that you will read that an acrylic tank can be "buffed" but understand that this is a very, very time consuming process (at least a week of daily effort) and has to be done on an empty tank to obtain the desired results.

    Skimmer

    The tank forums have a lot of discussion but no ultimate answers on skimmer brands and styles. Of all the low end skimmers (and one mid range) I have had, I like the Corallife the best for skimmate production ease of maintenance and minimal adjustments. My second favorite is an inline skimmer design (no brand recommendation) because the water level does not effect the functionality.
     
  4. tristan

    tristan Larval Mass Registered

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    hey. thanks both of you for your info

    im considering buying a 125 gal. tank as to much room is probbly better than enough? (and theres one for sale(glass)for 150)
    so pretty much ill just need to set that up and get a few feeder fish in there and let the water mature for approx. 3 months?


    and i really apriceate the recomendations on the sump and differnt types of skimers



    thanks!
     
  5. cuttlegirl

    cuttlegirl Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    You don't need feeder fish to cycle your tank if you have live rock. Whatever you do, don't let the fish store convince you to get a few damsels - they are aggressive and hard to catch!
     
  6. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    I am going to disagree with Jenn slightly - Damsels are IMPOSSIBLE to catch without tearing up the landscape and most likely emptying the tank of everything but water and they should not be left in a tank with most anything else you will want to put in there later, including an octopus.

    I am, however, in FULL agreement about not needing/using fish to cycle. If you are not planning to use LR, reconsider but you can cycle a tank with good fresh LR or by using dead grocery store shrimp if your "live rock" is not really "live" (as is most often the case if you get it from a fish store).
     

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