Juvenile Briearus

Tomh

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Hi I recently got a really small briearus. I have kept about 7 octopus but this is one is definitely the most challenging. I kept him in critter container for a couple days to make he ate. Then released him. He wound up getting in my overflow which never happened before. I put him back in critter container with rocks and pvc. I had him for about 2 weeks and he is very shy . Is that normal for them? I am Octo proofing my overflow with mesh because I am worried he is not happy in container. He stays hidden the majority of time and is very hard to find which I am not used to? Is this normal behavior for a baby briearus? His mantle is barely an inch. Should I keep him container or release him after I finish proofing my overflow? I have been feeding him a lot of the normal foods for Octo’s but from finding crabs small enough for him has been really hard. Any help and suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks Tom
 

DWhatley

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Tom,
IME, octos younger than between 3 and 5 months (basically sexual maturity) are VERY timid and will rarely be seen. I have had luck feeding little shy octos by starting with an eye sized piece of table shrimp on a skewer (or using a string with a freshly killed shore shrimp) and placing it near the den (finding the den is often more challenging than getting them to eat once you have found it) at the same time each night. With one this young I would suggest trying to feed at least twice a day or supplement with live food. Once it becomes accustomed to being fed, you can increase the size of the food as well as experiment with anything from the ocean (ie salt, not freshwater animals).

Here is a link to my experience raising a couple of O. briareus from eggs. There is a forward link to the journals of the two that survived. Looking over the journals may help with feeding ideas that I have forgotten :old:. Also, @sedna recently acquired a slightly older animal recently and is journaling her adventure here.
 

Tomh

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Hi yes, he has been the most challenging Octo I have kept!!! Never had such a young one!!! Like you said finding him has been stressful and tedious. Briearus are excellent at camaflouging themselves!!! Any way he seems to like to change his den/ hiding spot is that normal? Normally they pick one spot. No pics yet. Hard enough to see him lol. Thanks Tom
 

DWhatley

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My first thought was to say the ones I have had tended to stay in one spot for a period of time, my assumption being they moved as they out grew the space. However, in thinking about it, I was never that sure exactly where they hid within the live rock only that they would come out in the same spot for feeding. Even the tiny hatchlings that survived beyond the first couple of weeks learned where to get food.
 
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