here goes!


Sep 7, 2007

So I am looking into the Octopuses for a while, but never really on the care or anything, and now I'm at the point where I am thinking of getting one I have signed up here.

My S/W experince is rather large. I've had many tanks before, and messed up countless times. My 'system' has been going for about 7 or 8 years now, although I've only owned it for 5. I bought a pre-setup tank from someone locally, and that was my crash course into the salt-water arena.

I have had tanks between 5g (Stomapod) up to 90g (reef), although for the most part I've kept smaller tanks, 20g / 12g. At one point I even had 12 Anenome's in my 12g. The 12g & 20g are still up, the 20g now has a large Stomapod, and the 20g has a clown fish. About a year ago I had a tank crash, (cat stepped on the power outlet while I was on vacation and my roommate didn't know wtf happened and didn't call me or anything.. (he's gone now), and the fish tanks were without light / heat for approx 5 days which killed all the anenome's, most corals, and a fish. Since then I got the tanks both back into good condition, but haven't really done anything since then. The tanks are connected, so the total water is 32g.

So I am considering getting an octopus (dwarf). I did read though that people said that an 18g was too small for an Octo, at least for a beginner. Is that because of the size of the tank is too small, or that the water volume isn't large enough? I would ideally like to put one int he 12g cube, as it is very secure and the octopus wouldn't be able to escape after a few 'mods' done to the tank, however that is rather small, and I can relocate the stomapod into the 12g if needed, although he won't be happy (both are acrylic don't worry.. :)) The 20g has a nice skimmer attached, and the 12g has the 'surface skimmer' / very small wet / dry. I have a ton of live rock, approx 40lbs between the two tanks, and that's even after I gave away about 60lbs last year to local reefers.

So yeah I am just here to learn more and see what my options are.

Background about me: 24 years old. Always loved animals, I have a ton to be honest. I have a dog & cat. My gf / I have 5 tortoises, but they are located at her mothers house in a tortoise garden we (I) built. (2 Sulcatas & 3 Russians) And I also have a Veiled Chameleon. So I can never really leave the house as you can expect with all these animals so vacations are rare... (why go on vacation when you can bring the vacation to you? ) Work wise I work at NASA as a Robotic Engineer, so I am fairly technical with everything I do.

Wow this was long...


TONMO Supporter
Staff member
Mar 8, 2004
:welcome: to TONMO!

I think the primary concern is water volume, so if your octo tank is plumbed to the other tanks, that helps. I'm not sure if there are other concerns, though. You also might want to consider whether other animals in other tanks will have problems if the octo inks, too.

I think Roy's said that he's kept dwarf species in 15 gallons in his lab, I forget if they're on a fresh seawater system, though, but that would suggest that 15gal at least is sufficient room for whatever species that was. It's also sometimes hard to know what species you're getting, and hence how large it will grow. I know with bimacs, when they get to full size, they also sometimes start to seem cramped in tanks smaller than 55 gallons, and bump into walls and such. This is just from my reading here a lot, though; some of the experienced octo-keepers will probably have more specific info.

Also, there are a number of reasons dwarf species tend to make less interesting pets than larger octos like bimacs: they tend to be shy, nocturnal, and short-lived, and they're rarely available tank-raised, so you're likely to get a wild-caught animal near the end of its short lifespan.

Where do you work for NASA, if you don't mind my asking? I'm right by JPL, so I know a number of folks there...


Colossal Squid
Nov 19, 2002
Dunedin, New Zealand
Water volume is the concern. Octopus put out enormous quanities of waste compared to a similar sized fish (and they're messy eaters) so you need the volume for water chemistry stability.



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