Octopus briareus question

lexcanaves

Cuttlefish
Registered
#1
I have had my Octopus briareus for 2 months now. He was about 6 inches across when I got him and how he is at about 14 inches long, 2.5 inch mantle, and arm thickness at a1/2 inch. I alternate his feeding with frozen silversides, fiddler crabs, and blue crabs.
The problem is he hardly ever comes out unless enticed by food. He is still very wary of people. Although he will sit and stare at me from time to time, he will glide away within 10 seconds back to his den. I have never come home to find him stuck on the glass waiting for me, or perched on a rock or anything like that. His enrichment involves the hunting for live food and different shells I drop in so he can redecorate his home.
I have slowly changed his feeding time from 9PM/10PM to about 6PM/7PM to get him used to daylight. If he doesn't feel like coming out to get his fish-on-a-stick, he'll pull it into his den and I don't get to see him that night.
I don't always feed him exactly the same time every single day... Could this be a problem?
Am I also expecting too much too soon? I assumed he would be more sociable by this time
If anyone has any suggestions to what I am doing wrong or could do differently... . please let me know.
 

corw314

Colossal Squid
Staff member
Moderator
#2
I have found every octopus has a different personality, some more social than others. Egor was the same species as yours and she was a bit skittish also. It does take time for them to adjust. You may want to cut back on feeding to let him seek you out for food. They have a way of letting you know they are hungry if it is not handed to them and you may find he comes out more hunting and checking out his new world. Any pics?
 

lexcanaves

Cuttlefish
Registered
#3
Not any recent ones. Lately if he is out and about I'm so shocked and excited that I just watch him. Two minutes later I'll run and get the camera, but too late. So nope :/ I'm going to work on that.
Also, last night he was working on gathering all his shells/debris and putting them to one side of his rock between the rock and the glass wall. While I was awake, he spent the whole night squeezed between that area with his shells and not moving much. Then this morning, he was sleeping between some rocks on the opposite side of the tank and has been there all day. Very out of character for him, and I was hoping "he" isn't a female trying to find a spot to lay eggs...?
:Siiigh: So many questions... this Octopus is a complicated little guy. :bugout:
 

Keith

Vampyroteuthis
Registered
#5
Briareus are hella cool. I'm in the process of setting up for one. From what I've heard, like corw314 said, different octos have different levels of socialism. The person that referred me to TONMO had a Briareus that, like yours, was very hesitant to come out for the first few months. Animal Mothers Briareus Kalypso is a very active octo. Check Kalypso out by the way, Animal Mother has posted some great videos and photos under the Journals and Photos section. Well, good luck with your octopus. Hopefully he/she becomes more social.

-Keith
 

cuttlechris

Wonderpus
Registered
#6
I've seen kalypso and she's definately the most social thing i've seen in a tank. After that i decided to get a briareus. I'd be happy if it was half as entertaining as her.
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
#8
First of all, octopuses have different personalities, so yours may not behave like someone else's.

Secondly, two months is not a long time. You may find that interaction increases as the months go by.

I don't think feeding at the same time is a problem, but you might once in a while try offering something different (having the backup of the ususal food, in case your octopus won't accept the new food).

Hope that helps,

Nancy
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
#10
It's probably too early to attribute specific behaviors to the species we're keeping, because the octopus's keeper has a lot of influence on this behavior.

Nancy
 

chaostheory

O. bimaculoides
Registered
#12
Hi, I got my first octopus a month ago and it only took a week for her to interact with me but I had to let her bite me (I managed to get her to do it on the nail so it wouldn't hurt). But it just proves that she is social. It's too bad that it won't be long before she lays eggs:( I'm going to go get some coffee now: :coffee:
 

cuttlegirl

Colossal Squid
Supporter
Registered
#13
chaostheory;121040 said:
Hi, I got my first octopus a month ago and it only took a week for her to interact with me but I had to let her bite me (I managed to get her to do it on the nail so it wouldn't hurt). But it just proves that she is social. It's too bad that it won't be long before she lays eggs:( I'm going to go get some coffee now: :coffee:
:welcome: Try not to let your octopus bite you. Even if it is not one of the venomous kinds, you could still have an allergic reaction from the bite.
 

lexcanaves

Cuttlefish
Registered
#15
Dr. Octopus, aka Otto

Thank you Nancy. And yes, Kalypso is amazing and maybe I set my expectations too high after seeing her type of personality. Good news though, is that I had read dwhatley's journal and got the idea of hand feeding. He accepted it, and tried to take my hand with it (I screamed of course), and that night he was on a whole new adventure. Since that day he has been coming out more often, even when not provoked by food. I think he is now becoming more curious. I'm have seen him almost every day since then. Some pictures:








This is my favorite one.



You can't really tell in the pictures, but the webbing is getting thicker between his arms. He is officially 2 feet long now, because I saw him stretched out between my two sponges on opposite ends, and his tentacles were on both.
 

DWhatley

Cthulhu
Staff member
Moderator
#17
I have been reading a very old book that I feel any octo keeper should be forced to read :twisted:. Jacques Cousteau's The Soft Intelligence is still very current as far as much of the octo personality and handling information is concerned. They also did a lot of disection and research in a manner that would be frowned on today (and even later by Cousteau himself as he learned about the fragility of the oceans) but much of the information obtained has not changed.

One of the most important things I feel a keeper can gain from reading the book is a feel for the differences in personalities and the differences and results in handling an octopus. Some needs to be inferred but some of the statements are very direct. The team learned a lot from a woman by the name of Joanne Duffy (self taught GPO diver and handler) and include some of her recommendations about handling them in the wild. A continuous point is the need to be extremely GENTLE. When I "pet" Octane at night, I only use enough pressure to make contact and let him decide how much petting he wants. As a result (conjecture) he has been increasing the contact time and the amount of his body that stays in contact with my hand weekly. Strangely, initially, he allowed mantle contact first and arm contact last - I would have expected the opposite. Also note that Octane came to me as an adult (I believe younger octos are less likely to make physical contact) and our time together has been over 5 months.
 

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