O. Briaerus tank plans

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by copy111, Nov 9, 2010.

  1. copy111

    copy111 Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    This is what I'm thinking of, and I'm open to criticism and advice.

    50 gallon tank

    20 gallon sump

    400 gallon protein skimmer

    400 gallon filter

    penguin 660 powerhead

    70 pounds of live rock, some in the sump

    3 inches fine sand

    glass heater

    1x flourescent system

    1x stronger light system. possibly try some LEDs fr the Reverse photosynthesis
    planning on running what is referred to as revers photosynthesis in the sump, which is actually really simple.

    I know metal heaters are of higher quality, but don't think there necessary if there in tank. of course, if it's necessary I'll put it in.

    I'll probably dose with something to keep the alkalinity in line.
     
  2. skywindsurfer

    skywindsurfer Architeuthis Registered

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    That tank size with all of that rock will get pretty cramped as your briareus gets older. I think the generally accepted minimum tank size on this website for O. Briareus is 75 gallons, but remember that larger is ALWAYS better. The more room your animals has, the happier it will be. Keep in mind that in the wild most species traverse a good distance daily in search of food and shelter. The added space also helps to aide in stimulation for the animal, like a child in a large play ground vs one with just a swing set.
     
  3. skywindsurfer

    skywindsurfer Architeuthis Registered

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  4. copy111

    copy111 Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Thanks for the advice! I beleive that I heard 50 gallons was mininum size somewhere else here, but I am by no means an expert, I just beleive I read that somewhere.

    I was planning on putting thirty of those pounds of live rock in the small sump, leaving about forty pounds of it in the large tank. Would that leave adequate swimming area? Also, if the Briaerus cannot be kept in a 50 gallon, is there any species that are about medium in size and do well in mid-seventies temperature water?
     
  5. skywindsurfer

    skywindsurfer Architeuthis Registered

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    O. Briareus gets between 2-3 feet. I believe LEGS reached 4 feet before passing. You'd have to look at the journals forum to be certain but I know it was larger than most briareus. That is why I say a standard 50 gallon will be too small. The general rule of thumb is that the length of your tank should be 4x the animals max lenght and the width needs to be the same or twice the max length of the animal. This ensures that the animal will not only have ample space to turn around but adequate swimming distance across the tank. I'm pretty sure some people have kept O. Briareus in 50 gallon tanks, but I'm just saying it will be crowded. IMO you just need enough rock to provide ample swimming space and adequate shelter choices. Multiple hiding places are ideal as these animals will change dens periodically throughout their life time. If you're dead set on a 50 gallon tank then I would recommend O. Hummelincki. They are small/medium diurnal octopus that can be very social animals. Being diurnal, their color and texture patterns will be more diverse than a nocturnal species.
     
  6. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    O.Briareus is one of the largest species kept in the home aquarium. I recommend 125, most recommend a min of 75 gallons but I had one, Legs That was huge .She had almost a four foot span. So even a 75 would have been too small for her.
     
  7. copy111

    copy111 Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    I'll do some research on the humellincki species! Thanks for the advice! I'm glad my set up will be fine! What about octo proofing the tank? Any advice?
     
  8. copy111

    copy111 Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Also, I havn't seen any hummelincki for sale any, although I've looked at many places where octopuses may be for sale. Are they ver around to be found? If so, where?
     
  9. skywindsurfer

    skywindsurfer Architeuthis Registered

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    They are mainly imported from Hati I think. You can do a bit of research and talk to your LFS about getting one for you. As far as octopus proofing your tank just use what ever material is most convenient to completely seal the top and any plumbing going in or out. It doesn't have to be air tight, just secure enough that the octopus can't crawl out. This could be anything from plastic screen mesh to a solid glass top.
     
  10. corpusse

    corpusse Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    I have a briaerus in a 90 gallon but I've never seen him move about so I can't comment on how much space they require. He is also still small.

    As for the tank I'd ditch the filter. Filters in saltwater tanks are a waste of time imo. Stick with live rock and a refugiuim as natural means of filtration. When you say skimmer rated for 400 gallons what does that mean? There are tons of skimmers rated for 400 gallons that I wouldn't put on a 40. Buy a decent brand and something rated similarly to your tank size would be better then a cheapo rated for 400.

    Finally I would not cheap out on the heater. A lot of cheaper aquarium heaters are prone to sticking or leaking. If you're going to go cheap get 2 lower powered heaters in case one does get stuck. This is probably a good idea even if you are using something higher end like a jagger. Also a grounding probe will only cost you a couple of bucks and is a very good investment.

    You're also probably going to want more flow then what a single powerhead + return pump will provide you with.
     
  11. skywindsurfer

    skywindsurfer Architeuthis Registered

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    I would not totally discredit a filter in any system. Like all filtration techniques, it comes down to personal preference but a mechanical filter does help depending on what your trying to do. I'll agree with multiple powerheads though. From what I've seen with my animals, they tend to get more active as they get older. I don't think swimming space is as important as crawling space. Crawling space doesn't necessarily mean open tank bottom.
     
  12. SabrinaR

    SabrinaR Larger Pacific Striped Octopus Registered

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    I have personal experience with and with out a filter on octopus tanks. With out the filter for some reason with Isis, ammonia was always present. I would do almost daily water changes to keep it manageable. However my previous octopus HP Lovecraft didn’t have any ammonia problems so I didn’t use a filter at that time. I like using the canister filter, at least for now. You do have to maintain it and clean it out at least monthly which for some people can be a pain but with the water changes being done daily it was the lesser of two evils.

    Isis (my current octopus) is a bimaculoides and is in my 55 gallon tank with 25 gallon sump. She swims constantly. They aren’t know for swimming a lot but still just the same she does and I feel guilty and wish I had set up my larger tank first. I have come to the personal conclusion that unless it is a very small octopus, a 55 gallon is just too small unless you have a good sized sump to put lots of live rock to open up the tank. I feel guilty when I see her swim and then she gets to the glass and can’t explore more. Not everyone feels this way and even with in the individual species all octopuses have different personalities so what works for one may not be needed or even work for the other.

    I say plan for the worst hope for the best. If I were you I would have access to the filter but try not to set it up and see how that goes. A poorly designed sump can be the down fall of any octopus tank. Just do your research and get the best sump and pump you can afford. Flow is the key here so try not to skimp or cut corners.

    Hope this helps.
     
  13. corpusse

    corpusse Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    I'd say your skimmer is underpowered and or you did not have enough live rock. There should be no reason to need a canister filter in a marine tank octopus or otherwise unless you are using it to run carbon or something like that.
     
  14. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    As you are seeing just in this short time, marine tanks have as many options as there are hobbiests :grin:.

    My personal preference is more in line with Corpusse. LOTS of GOOD live rock, IN the main tank, as large a sump as you can manage and simple filtration (I use a filter sock at the overflow with a bag of charcoal (not as much forced flow through as a canister but not passive). I rinse the charcoal weekly and exchange it about once a month (I actually keep two bags filled for each tank and swap them weekly so for maintenance I only renew it every two months).

    I HIGHLY recommend you reduce your sand to half. Sand beds tend to be major collectors of pollutants, are hard to clean and give little surface area for positive bacteria. I disrupt mine vigorously weekly and vacuum as much of the waste "dust" as I can during the water exchange process. I don't put sand under or behind my LR (it gets there, of course, but I intentionally don't put it there when setting up a tank) and my octos have removed it when they den on the tank floor. Unless you set up a DSB (6" or better of undisrupted sand that is over 1 year old and I really have not seen benefit until 2 years) a sand bed is a nitrate producer and waste collector. If you want to create a DSB for an octo tank, that is best done in the sump or a separately connected tank.

    Keep in mind that your sump needs to accommodate the amount of water that will drain back into it when the pump is off. So a 20 gallon sump will only contain 10-15 gallons of water (toward the lower end after LR and equipment displacement). I have found sizing them to roughly half your water volume is about right (again you will not have 1/3 your water volume actually in the sump but it seems to be a good go by for sizing). If you can manage a 30 gallon tank (talls have narrower foot print but height is a problem with tall tanks though because of the skimmer requirements if you are putting it under the tank) I would recommend it as a minimum consideration. I still have a couple of tanks with undersized sumps but have enlarged others as time, money and space have permitted.

    There is a long forum post on skimmers that is "stuck" to the top of the Tank Talk forum that you may want to read if you have not purchased a skimmer. It may help you find units to avoid more than specific recommendations for your budget.

    If you are having your tank drilled (i.e. if it is not already reef ready) lowering the bulk head to allow 1.5 to 2" of air space above the water line is very helpful in dissuading escapes. I also recommend a 1.5" - 2" fixed lip around the circumference of the top for the same purpose.
     
  15. Joe-Ceph

    Joe-Ceph Haliphron Atlanticus Supporter

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    I agree with D that a 3" sand bed is too much just for looks, and too little for a DSB (Deep Sand Bed). After researching DSB's I decided to set up my bimac tank with one, and from what I read 4.5" is the minimum. They are controversial, but I think mine reduces nitrate rather than increasing it. With hind sight I would have installed a remote DSB (RDSB) instead because octopus like to dig, and digging kills the anaerobic bacteria that are responsible for removing nitrate. Live rock can support anaerobic bacteria, so a DSB might not be worth the risk, but I didn't want to use live rock, so I needed another way to reduce nitrate. If you decide to use a DSB, it is very important to have sufficient water flow over the sand so that particles can't settle, but are kept suspended and eventually removed by a skimmer or mechanical filter. If they settle, and aren't eaten by cleanup crew, they they will rot and increas nitrate like D said.

    This is a personal preference, but for me, it wasn't enough to dissuade escapes, I wanted to make them impossible (my wife said that one escape, and my hobby would be over!). I build an acrylic top, with a hinged lid, that bolted down to the plastic frame with nylon bolts. The latch is designed to catch whenever the lid is closed, so I can't close the lid and forget to latch it. If you can afford an escape, then maybe deterrents are enough, but I prefer to just lock the tank down.
     
  16. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Good point Joe! I did NOT mean to not put a secure top on the tank!!!! The lip can support the top (and this is what we do for most of our tanks) but is put there to help with escape attempts when the lid is open for cleaning and feeding.
     
  17. copy111

    copy111 Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    Plan edit!

    50 gallon tank

    30 gallon sump

    Tunze DOC protein skimmer 9016

    200 gallon filter, sinc theres controversy I'll go right down the middle

    2x penguin 660 powerhead

    70 pounds of live rock, going to put as much as I can in the smaller tank

    1 inch fine sand

    2x glass heater

    1x flourescent lights

    1x PC lights
     
  18. skywindsurfer

    skywindsurfer Architeuthis Registered

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    Be careful about over packing your sump. Detrius and other debris will accumulate over time and with all that rock it may make out difficult to clean. Decent flow through the rocks will help with this issue.
     
  19. Joe-Ceph

    Joe-Ceph Haliphron Atlanticus Supporter

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    I think a good skimmer is very important, and you are planning to get a really good one, so good job on that.
    I still think that a 50 gallon tank might be too small, unless you get an O. Hummelincki.
    I agree with skywindsurfer that live rock needs lots of flow to do it's work, so if you are going to pack it so tightly, be sure to put pumps in the sump to get lots of flow around the rock, and avoid dead spots and junk settling.
    PC lights might be too bright for an octopus, you might want to look around Tonmo to see what people have said about them.
    I'm not a big fan of using powerheads for water motion in the tank. I prefer koralia pumps or even better, Tunze Nano Stream pumps. They move more water, and they don't produce such a focused blast as a powerhead. They also use much less power, and so add much less heat to the system (which I care about because I have a bimac at 56 degrees).

    When you say "200 gallon filter" you could mean anything. There are a lot of ways to keep water clean, and while just using lots of live rock seems to work best for most reef tanks, I'm skeptical about the prevailing belief that most other filtration methods (bio-balls, canister filters, etc) "have no place" in a marine system. I've kept octopus, strawberry anemone and gorgonians in a cold heavily fed tank for years using a wet/dry trickle filter, and no live rock at all, and it works for me, so just do your homework, and pick a method that will work for you. I think using live rock (with a good skimmer) while expensive, is probably the simplest and safest way, to go, but if you are careful you will avoid the pitfalls involved with other methods of filtration. BTW, I hate canister filters because I learned the hard way that if you wait to long to clean them the mechanical filter could get blocked, causing increased back pressure, resulting in an o-ring failure and a flood. I need a system that is forgiving about irregular maintenance.
     
  20. copy111

    copy111 Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    The plan is to get an O. hummelincki, although where from, I have no idea! I've been searching and havn't so much seen a mention of them being sold! These are I beleive my final plans, and actually a few minuts before you posted, joe-ceph, I had some advice to use a pump instead of powerheads. Also, i was purposely vague about my filter because I'm going to by from the LFS, although the plan was wet-dry with bio-balls. so here we go!



    One fifty gallon tank

    One thirty gallon tank

    BM200P protein skimmer by bubble-magus

    200 gallon filter

    Very fine sand

    Seventy pounds of small pieces of live rock

    Lots of food quality tubes of plastic of differing sizes

    2x glass heater



    Drill six holes in the rear tank panel

    4 for returns from sump, two for drains, each with plastic strainer

    Return pipes3/4 inch

    Drain pipes 1.5 inch

    all with pump going at about 1800 gph
     

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