Octopus from the Pacific coast of Nicaragua

Discussion in 'ID Requests' started by Neogonodactylus, Mar 9, 2015.

  1. Neogonodactylus

    Neogonodactylus Haliphron Atlanticus Staff Member Moderator

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    We don't often see octopus from the Pacific coast of Central America. I received this one from Nicaragua and I can't identify it. I'm open to suggestions. It has a simple, faint blue pair of ocelli, metallic petals around the eyes, occasionally erects horns above the eyes, and seems to be diurnal. I think it was collected in the low intertidal - or at least very shallow.

    Roy
     

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  2. tonmo

    tonmo Titanites Staff Member Webmaster Moderator

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    Thanks for posting this @Neogonodactylus! I've promoted it on Facebook and Twitter, hoping we'll get some insights or ideas... lovely in any case.
     
  3. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Cross between a rubescens and a bimac? :roll:

    Beautiful little guy!. It is interesting to note the fluorescent green around the eye and over the skin (or so it appears from one of the shots). O.briareus is most commonly known for this and I have seen it on the little macropuses we sometimes get from the Philippines (best guess is Callistoctopus aspilosomatis) but not noticed it in the few others I have kept.

    Love that eyespot too! Is the green fluorescence off center to the ocellus an artifact of the flash or part of the true coloration.

    So far, the octos with a blue ring have been thought to be (if recall correctly you have questioned mototi 's reputation for having a toxic bite) be potentially lethal to humans. Are you going to test for toxicity on this one?
     
  4. Neogonodactylus

    Neogonodactylus Haliphron Atlanticus Staff Member Moderator

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    The green edging is real. Here the animal is catching a grass shrimp.

    Roy
     

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  5. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Is this a dwarf or young animal? My mind put it at large hummelincki size but the shrimp suggests it is much, much smaller. You keep coming up with the coolest animals! Would love to have been able to see this one in person.
     
  6. Neogonodactylus

    Neogonodactylus Haliphron Atlanticus Staff Member Moderator

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    I think it is a fairly young animal - ML about 4 cm. One arm was severed at the base and has regenerated about 2 cm which suggests that it has been around for at least a few months
     
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  7. Neogonodactylus

    Neogonodactylus Haliphron Atlanticus Staff Member Moderator

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    Well, I got my answer about whether this female is a dwarf or large species. She filled both ends of the pvc tube completely with shells and rubble on March 13. She did take a piece of grass shrimp, but only snatched it using one arm extended out through the shell and rubble plug. On the 14th, she would not take food and immediately grabbed and replaced a large shell that I pulled from the blocked entrance. On the 15th she would not take food and would not extend her arm tips when I disturbed the blocked ends of the tube.

    Suspecting that she had laid eggs, I picked up the tube and dumped the shells and rubble completely blocking both ends. In fact, the entire tube was packed with shells and rubble leaving only a small chamber in the center of the tube. She did not leave the tube (as she would have before she block it) and attached to the ceiling of the chamber were several garlands of small eggs. I tried to photograph them, but she is staying in contact with them and they are deep inside the piece of pvc. The attached photo was the best I could do. I left her alone after trying to photograph the eggs and withing 10 min she had pulled several large pieces of rubble into both ends of the pipe.

    I've poked through the literature trying to find any small ocellate species of octopus from the Pacific coast of Central America. The only one I can find is Octopus oculifer described by Hoyle in 1904 from the Galapagos. Voss found a couple of imature individuals from Panama that he thought were similar and their is specimen from a tide pool in Costa Rica that may be the same species.
     

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  8. tonmo

    tonmo Titanites Staff Member Webmaster Moderator

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    Wow... very nice pic of what sounds like a diligent mom.
     
  9. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks for the update! Of course the next question is, "HOW small are the eggs relative to O. vulgaris?" or to be more specific, "What are the chances of hatchling survival?".

    I've been experimenting with keeping a pair of blue crabs in one of my sumps just to see if
    1. They will survive together
      1. Male was tiny when I got him and I waited until he was the size of the female before introducing them, now full sized and not molting
      2. They have been living together successfully for several month one has lost a claw but other than that the seem to coexist fine.
      3. No sponge on the female yet (she was adult when acquired)
      4. I found out they only spawn once. Somehow I missed that when reading about them as a possible food source for octo hatchlings
    2. If they have hatchlings in the sump will the hatchlings be transferred to the main tank as food
    3. Can I freeze the hatchlings and use for food when needed.
    Since starting this project, I have been getting small rock crabs as feeders. It appears (but I am not certain) that these crabs may successfully spawn in a tank but may not have a pelagic stage as I am finding very tiny animals that I don't think were in my shipment. I have placed a few of the berried females in another tank to see if I get more. These would be way easier to maintain but if there is no pelagic stage, probably not useful for small egg species. They also have claws that are not soft body safe once they are larger than a woman's pinky finger nail.
     
  10. Neogonodactylus

    Neogonodactylus Haliphron Atlanticus Staff Member Moderator

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    The eggs are 2 to 3 mm - typical size for a small egg species. If I were going to try to rear them (which I'm not), I think cleaner shrimp might be a good source of larval food.

    Roy
     
  11. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    If you want to send the eggs off for a lame attempt - I am game :grin:
     
  12. Neogonodactylus

    Neogonodactylus Haliphron Atlanticus Staff Member Moderator

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    The eggs were clearly laid in several batches. Some are ready to hatch, others a week away.

    Roy
     

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  13. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Roy, one observation I have made with the few species I have kept but have not seen mentioned is noting the coloration at the tips of the suckers. It is probably the best way to communicate something to look for when we run across the questions of is this a bimac or hummelincki. I have noticed that the color (when present) is always either orange or purple (or white when no color is displayed - maybe no white always in some - need to observe mercs and briareus more). What occurred to me to wonder is if warm water species are always purple/blue and cold water always (relatively speaking) orange? Thoughts?
     
  14. Neogonodactylus

    Neogonodactylus Haliphron Atlanticus Staff Member Moderator

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    The eggs began hatching last night. They are photopositive and I can see perhaps 2 or 3 hundred in the tank. They are without a doubt the smallest paralarvae I have ever seen - perhaps just over 1 mm. I'm going to try to photograph them, but I doubt that I'll be able to get anything decent.

    Roy
     
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  15. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Looking forward to whatever you capture on "film" :grin:.
     
  16. Neogonodactylus

    Neogonodactylus Haliphron Atlanticus Staff Member Moderator

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    Here is a short video clip of a one day old paralarvae flashing its chromatophores.

     
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  17. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    Amazing video! I've never seen any this small before.

    Nancy
     
  18. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    What is the rather large black spot (almost eye sized) at the center back of the mantle? It seems rather large proportionally for the ink sack.
     
  19. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    This marginatus video was recently posted on Facebook and I came back to these pictures because of the fluorescence displayed on the eye and arm. Looking at the photos and video again, I am wondering about a relationship.

     
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