Nautilus as a pet?

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by mondhams, Jan 26, 2009.

  1. mondhams

    mondhams Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Hi i'm new here,

    I really want to know about the conditions and the requirements for having a nautilus as a pet. How big should the tank be? What equipments for the tank do I have to buy? I only heard recently that you can keep them as a domestic pet. I was surprise and happy because I always have been so interested in having a saltwater tank and keeping either a squid or an octopus but I never really imagine that you can keep a nautilus which is probably one of my favourite animals.
    The guy who told me about having a nautilus said that he used to have one and he kept his in a saltwater pond (almost like a small ocean) which is outdoor with a roof to cover the pond from rain. I heard from my friend that it is very succesful to keep them in this condition. (Oh and i'm from Thailand so the temperature is tropical and is perfect for these species from the sea.)While having a nautilus in the pond he used something called a chiller.
    I am so passionate about this and I really really want to keep one but I know that these requires many things and I have been searching on the internet for over a week looking for websites that could help me but there were none...
    I really really hope someone here could help me.
    I don't want to buy them out of just exitement and for the reason of just wanting it. I do scuba diving and I love the ocean and I really want to see the nautilus die because I did something wrong....
    Please help me :nautilus:

    Thank you
     
  2. erich orser

    erich orser Architeuthis Supporter Registered

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    You definitely need a chiller, as they are a deep water species that only rises to the surface at night. They also should be completely sealed from bright lights, as they live in perpetual darkness, and of course a giant vertical tank so they can float up and down. Frankly, I wouldn't own one. Too exotic, too potentially-endangered, too much hassle. I might (if I ever get rich) own a GPO, if I live right next to the North Pacific and can cycle their water direct from the source, but otherwise, I'll hold off on ceph ownership. Too much moral and practical responsibility for my taste.

    But if I write a bestseller or two and can afford to live on the water in the San Juan Islands... who knows? But maybe I'll just be content to dive with the wild ones.
     
  3. sedna

    sedna Larger Pacific Striped Octopus Supporter Registered

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    There are lots of other choices for ceph pets that are less expensive and intensive than a nautilus! Unless you really are rich, then cruise the "exotics" thread!
     
  4. mondhams

    mondhams Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Thank you so much for replying so quickly.
    I am willing to pay and I am really interested in having one. I know many people said that other celph are much more interesting but I really like the nautilus.
    In the aquarium store in Thailand, there are only two or three stores that owns these nautili and there are about 12 to 20 of them! and they live in a huge pool. They seem very healthy and they move around alot and they sell them for about $176 for each. I'm guessing that the tank and the equipments are going to cost more but apart from the chiller how do I set up the tank? and what else is needed. How deep do the tank have to be and how will I feed it if it is too tall? I would ask the shop but sometimes they just want to sell that they tend to be abit biased.
    The friend I told you about earlier, he said that his nautilus lived for quite a long time and they died not because of the condition(seem to be a problems with most owner) but because of the trigger fish that was in the same pond, the trigger fish kept nipping little bits of the nautilus tentacles until they are unable to move properly so the nautilus feel into one of the anemone they had a the bottom and obviously was poisoned and then the triggerfish swam down to eat the rest of the nautilus and was poison too. :cry: I know it is really sad but I think that I'm just going to keep one on its own until i'm sure this one is alright for atleast three month and then I might get another one. So please tell me what I need to do I'm a newbie so I know very little of them.
    Thank you,
     
  5. robyn

    robyn Vampyroteuthis Supporter

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    Hi Mondhams,

    Welcome to Tonmo. I am a scientist in the US who has worked with captive nautiluses in a research facility for about four years. Generally we discourage people from keeping nautiluses as pets because they are difficult to keep healthy in captivity, and because we don't know enough about the health of their wild populations to be confident that a pet trade is supportable. Having said that, there are some hobbyists who have kept nautiluses and had them do well.

    A chiller is essential - even though they are from the tropical ocean, they live in deep water that remains cold. A temperature of about 15-18 degrees celcius is necessary, anything above about 23 degrees will be fatal. So if you are keeping it in an outside tank you must have a chiller. The size of the chiller you need will depend on the size of the tank. For one nautilus, no smaller than 150 gallons, and a vertical tank is better than horizontal. If you want to keep more than one, you should expect to have a tank of about 200 gallons. People keep them in smaller, but since they routinely swim hundreds of meters up and down every day, bigger is better.

    It sounds from your posts that you have not had a saltwater tank before - (apologies if I have read that wrongly). I definitely don't recommend nautilus for a first-time keeper, they are very sensitive to water quality and can become ill without showing many effects. An experienced keeper would be more likely to know if there is something subtle that is wrong.

    You definitely need to keep them in a tank on their own - whoever kept them with trigger fish condemned their animals to a certain death. Trigger fish are a main predator of nautilus and will kill each and every one in the tank.

    My overall advice is, get something else. Nautiluses are beautiful, yes, but they are also quite boring aquarium animals as they are sedentary 90 % of the time. They need to be kept in the dark, so they don't go blind (this happens a lot with animals from pet stores), they need very good water quality and constant monitoring. If you are just starting with reef tanks, I would recommend something more interactive and enjoyable to start with.

    Hope this helps!

    Robyn.
     
  6. mondhams

    mondhams Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Thank you so much Robyn, that was very very helpful, and no I never had a saltwater tank before but I have talked to many people about with the at cycle and maintaining the pH and the salinary. I know that they are very difficult to keep and you probably can't imagine how many people had told me that they are boring but I'm really not into any other fish or species. I will take it slow and study about them more before even thinking about buying one. If you have anymore information even any tips or anything about keeping them please tell me.
    I am aware about the triggerfish because i go scuba diving and if you get too close to them while they're nesting they will chase you and attempt to attack you.
    It is very nice to meet you and I really appreciate all the informations.Is there is a website that tell me in detail about setting up a tank for nautilus that would be really helpful and i'm always interested and take to granted what everyone have to.
     

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