Is this normal for an octopus?

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by jkprules, Nov 9, 2007.

  1. jkprules

    jkprules Cuttlefish Registered

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    Hi all. I got an octopus yesterday after months of preparation. It was sold as O. briareus but I'm not positive that that is what it is. Anyway, I drip acclimated it for a couple of hours and then put it in the tank, but it hasn't moved since I put it in there. It's in like a peanutbutter jar with holes in it which it came in. Yesterday it was "ventilating" heavily but today there isn't much movement at all. Ocasionally part of the head moves like its trying to move water, but i have to look close and it doesnt happen that often. It doesn't flash colors when the lights in the room change either and it's eyes seem more "dialated" than yesterday. Any thoughts? Recomendations? Ideas?
     
  2. gjbarord

    gjbarord Sepia elegans Staff Member Moderator

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    Just giev it some time. Shipping induces high levels of stress in octopuses and what you are describing does not sound abnormal, given the condtions. The only thing that you can do is pay close attention to its behavior.

    If the octopus was moving about the tank actively after a shipment, that would be a conern to me but retreating to a den upon acclimation is quite common.

    Greg
     
  3. Stevie

    Stevie O. bimaculoides Supporter

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    I am no expert, but I would be sure to test the water. Better to be safe than sorry. Also I have noticed that the more time you spend trying to "check on them" the less they move around. Especially in the first week or so.
     
  4. jkprules

    jkprules Cuttlefish Registered

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    Well, I tested the water quality before I put him in and everything was great. Ammonia and nitrite were zero and nitrate was like 20 ppm. salt and ph were fine too.
     
  5. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    Testing it again now that the octo's been in for a bit would be a good idea; adding a ceph increases the amount of ammonia irapidly, so your tank's system may take a bit to adapt to the new bioload. If that's the case, doing a water change might be a good idea, too.
     
  6. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Is your octopus free to leave the jar or is it captive in a small container?
     
  7. jkprules

    jkprules Cuttlefish Registered

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    The jar is open. It hasn't moved at all in a day now. Arms and body are all in the same possition as a day ago and its gone completely pale. I'm afraid it may have expired.
     
  8. gjbarord

    gjbarord Sepia elegans Staff Member Moderator

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    That definitely does not sound good. Poke it or do something to determine whether or not it actually is dead.

    It does not sound like you did anything wrong. Some animals are just not as fit as other animals and consequently they are not able to adjust to stressful situations as well.

    Where did you get the octopus from? (store bought or shipped)

    Another possibility: I know that everyone has their own ways of acclimating octopus but I have always been of the mind that one hour is the maximum acclimation time for cephalopods. The risk you run in long acclimations is ammonia and nitrite buildup due to the high metabolism afforded to cephalopods. Perhaps the water you had the octopus in while acclimating was beginning to degrade. You may want to test this water as well next time. A short acclimation time is much better than allowing an octopus to acclimate for hours in poor water.

    Greg
     
  9. cuttlegirl

    cuttlegirl Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    Sorry to hear about your octopus, it sounds as if it is dead or near death. The way that the octopus was collected, shipped or kept at the LFS could have contributed to its death.
     
  10. jkprules

    jkprules Cuttlefish Registered

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    I ordered it from Tom's Caribbean Tropicals. It was wild caught and didn't look in great shape when it got here, but i was holding out hope i could pull it through. Oh well, I'll just have to start again from square one.
     
  11. Animal Mother

    Animal Mother Architeuthis Supporter

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    Try to get Tom to give you credit or even better a refund for it if it is in fact dead. I would try a different source. Last time I tried to get one from Tom I found that he gets many of his octos from Lobster trappers who don't collect them in a "pet-friendly" way and they are usually damaged.
     
  12. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    AM,
    From the little extras that I know because of my work with Ken, I think many of the octos (except for some of the Merc's but even Trapper was named for "Trapper Jeff" who caught and brought her to Ken for me - expecting a Vulgaris or Briarius but you know the rest of the story) caught in the keys are pretty much "rescue" critters. The crabbers and lobser trappers don't find them a good thing (they steal the catch) but will sell them to the pet trade rather than just kill them if they can recoup some of the damages. The good thing about the method is that you can guarantee that no cyanide was used (true of any US caught critters), the octo was not pulled out of its den and that they were delivered timely to the supplier without being shipped. Missing arms are likely to be due to the critters inside the traps more than human mishandling.
     
  13. jkprules

    jkprules Cuttlefish Registered

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    I talked to Tom's Tropicals and he said some species just can't handle the water in certain areas regardless of if it was purified or not. He said sometimes theres just trace elements that are missing or present that the octopus just cant handle and they don't last but a few hours. I'm inclined to believe him as he is refunding me for the octopus. Has anyone else had this problem? He recommended I try another species. Have people had luck with the bimacs marine deopot live are supposedly offering?
     
  14. cuttlegirl

    cuttlegirl Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    I would guess that the octopus was in bad shape from the shipping, not from your water...
     
  15. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    hmm. Sounds like they might be talking about the copper problem. Looking back, you don't say if you use RO/DI water or if you've confirmed that the tank is copper-free... If the tank has had freshwater fish in it, particularly, which were treated with copper-based medicines it can leave a permanent residue that cephs are very sensitive to, even in very small amounts.

    It would be interesting to know if this is what they're talking about, or if it's something else. "Even if it's been purified" seems suspicious to me, since RO/DI water is pretty well-established around here as being safe for use with cephs, and it should be extremely pure if the RO system is working right. If they were speaking more generically, though, maybe there's something in your tank that's adding back impurities, or your salt mix or something has some issues. This may be just a summary way of them saying "yeah, that happens sometimes, and it's usually something that's not your fault and you couldn't have predicted, so don't feel bad about it," but if they have something more specific in mind, it would be good to find out.
     
  16. Thales

    Thales Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    That sounds iffy to me. What areas is he talking about? What trace elements? Sounds to me like the general kinds of inaccuracies that some use when they don't know why something happened, but don't feel they should say that.

    I'm glad you are getting your money back.
     
  17. drakanorn

    drakanorn GPO Registered

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    out of curiosity what salt mix do you use?
     

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