Help Sick Octopus? Lost Legs

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by Ice Nine, Oct 8, 2011.

  1. Ice Nine

    Ice Nine Larval Mass Registered

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    I have had my octopus for 1 month. I do not know the species. Everything has been fine and it lives only with a pencil type urchin. The octopuses head is about the size of a quarter. This morning when I awoke its arms were weirdly curled up which I've read on the forums is not good. When it began to walk I noticed one leg was "broke off" only half it's normal length. Another leg was only 1/4 of its normal size. The other 6 legs are okay. Its walking is not fluid because of this. I originally thought the urchin did it since I have nothing else in the tank. However, pencil type urchins are supposed to be safe. But then I read about autophagy. Does my octopus have this? If so I am assuming I can do nothing about it and it will die. If there is anything I can do let me know. If it has autophagy what causes this? Does this come with senoscence or is this due to stress only? When people say stress due they mean "nutrient stress/poor diet" or "stress" from tank levels being off? I had been feeding my octopus hermit crabs, ghost shrimp, and guppies. I will discontinue ghost shrimp and guppy feeding since these are freshwater from what I've read on the forums. If it dies I want to make sure I do better job next time. If this happens with age then there's nothing I can do. If it's something I can prevent I would like to know unless it is none of these things. Let me know.
     
  2. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    :welcome: to TONMO

    Sorry to hear about your friend. Unfortunately everything you are describing is what we see in octos that are nearing the end of their life. As you mention the symptoms could also be stress related but in truth there is no way to tell which it is. I dont think there is anything you can do. You could try a water change, in case the problem is being caused by water quality, but it really sounds like sensence.


    Ghost shrimp are ok for food. and hermits are fin as well. but you definitely don't want to fee them guppies. In fact if the guppies were treated with a copper medication it could be the cause of death.


    What type of tank setup do you have.

    Where did you get the octo? do you know what part of world it came from? this can help our the experts figure out the species.
     
  3. Ice Nine

    Ice Nine Larval Mass Registered

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    I tried attaching a picture of the Octopus so I hope it worked. This is a picture from when I bought it and it is in it's "carrying case." I bought it at a pet store here in Indiana. The pet store normally buys from Miami, Florida and they get either a pygmy or one other species. Unfortunately, they got it from a dealer in Chicago this time so it is hard to say where it came from this time. I hope the picture is good enough to tell the species. The store said the Octo would be fine in a two gallon tank but I bought a 5 gallon instead. The tank is called a Fluval Edge. It has a 3 filter system. A Fluval Edge Foam Filter Insert, Fluval Edge activated Carbon Filter Insert, and Fluval Edge Biomax Filter Insert. I will do a water change as a last ditch effort. However, if for some reason "the Kracken" (that's what I named him/her) passes away do I need to empty the tank and sterilize for the next one? Fingers crossed....
     

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  4. iAlex

    iAlex Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Even for a dwarf, that is an extremely small tank. For a mercatoris, I wouldn't say anything less than about a 15 or 20 gallon tank. Keeping it cramped like that probably stressed it out. :sad:
     
  5. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Wow interesting octopus! it might be in the macropus complex. looks kinda like briareus, but it lacks the webbing I would expect to see. i hope Dwhatley has a look at this thread, she had an octopus that looked quite similar.

    Unfortunately that tank is WAY to small for an octopus, even a dwarf. The min recomended for a dwarf species is 30 gallons. and most other commonly kept species require a 55 gallon, with two of the larger Caribbean species requiring up to 120+ gallons. It pretty disturbing that your fish store told you five gallons was OK
     
  6. Ice Nine

    Ice Nine Larval Mass Registered

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    Thank you all for your help. The Kracken, my octopus, just passed...... I did try to do some research before I bought it, I guess just not enough and it didn't help that the store mislead me on tank size... Thanks for having such a great forum so people can learn from. While it may have been old age, apparently the tank size may not have helped either. I will get a bigger tank before attempting another octopus. After I decide on a species this time I will check with the experts on this site about tank size. My apologies to the Kracken, Octopus enthusiasts, and all....
     
  7. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks for sharing! Dont feel so bad, you were misled by your LFS. We'd love to help you with you set-up and next octo try. If you you like read I would suggest the book: Cephalopods: Octopuses and Cuttlefish for the Home Aquarium. its about $25 and it is filled with great information.

    you can find the book HERE on amazon.
     
  8. sedna

    sedna Larger Pacific Striped Octopus Supporter Registered

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    Do NOT beat yourself up over this!!! It is very hard when you start off with bad information, and it sound like there could be multiple things that could have contributed to your guy's death, and it could just have been his time, too. Sounds like you've been reading the forums and collecting info, and CaptFish is right on. It's usually recommended that your tank is up and running for 9 months before putting an octo in it, the longer the better. Keeping octos is the coolest hobby, but it can be tricky, and they don't live long in the best of circumstances! Experience is the best teacher, but keep reading the forums and don't give up!
     
  9. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    I just got back in from TONMOCON IV and did not take my PC so just now saw your thead. Sad but warm welcome.

    I am not sure at all on the species but I don't think it was a macropus. The thinness of the arms would suggest a dwarf species and the size of the eyes a nocturnal but I don't think it is a mercatoris (arms too long) or joubini (too much taper in the arms). There is a spot on the mantle that may be a reflection but is curious (left side, under the eye). However, I have found it takes a number of photos to be clear and that is not possible. It would be helpful in elmination to know if that spot below the eyes is an artifact from the flash, if it had a spot like that on each side or if that spot was only on one side. I wish I had seen the thread soon enough to get you to put a tape measure along side the body when it died. We try to do this (very hard to make yourself do, I know) to get a consistent size of animals for future references. I am curious about where it came from though and recommend highly that next go round you keep insisting on trying to find out with the argument that you need to know the proper water temp (sometimes this works to get a little background, sometimes it does not - you don't need secreted location :roll:, just body of water). Also, did you happen to note the number of sucker rows on each arm (there would be either one or two rows). VERY long shot guess would be digueti I have not seen one and am only guessing on similarities I have noticed to the merc. Roy would be able to naysay my guess if I am way off.

    Stress or arm injury could cause an animal to eat one or more of its own arms. I have only had one octopus to do this (you can discard any issue with the urchin but an unknown crab in the LR is not out of the possibility considerations) and there was no question it had been exposed too long out of the water so that the arms were impacted from drying by the overhead fan. We have never seen an identifiable case of bacterial autophagy (Jean has seen it in NZ in a public aquarium but we have not seen it in home tanks) and the only animals I recall losing arms for unknown reasons have been in the abdopus family (an animal that can drop an arm at a specialized joint). I am pretty sure this is not a member of that complex.
     

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