Octopus or not?

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by marineboy, Dec 30, 2005.

  1. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    Hi!

    I am from a coastal town in California. On a seventh grade field trip to the tidepools, i found a small Two-Spot Octopus and am now completely addicted to the cephalapod group. I have been doing studies on the local octopus and up until recently found this website. Before I had been on this website, I had NO IDEA that octopus could be kept as pets. Now, I have read the care guides and feel that I can provide a suitable habiat for this amazing animal. I have been wondering lately though if it is going to be high maintenance and extremely tough, if it is, then I will keep my distance. In other words, in all your experiences, on a scale from 1 to 10, how hard do you think care for this animal is? I do not want to get excited and buy one and have it die the next morning. All help would be appreciated!

    also,
    Are there any other octopus besides the two-spot octopus that are in the southern california tidepool/coastal area?

    THANK YOU! :grin:
     
  2. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    PS: I have a budget of about 350$. Will I be able to supply all of the octopuses needs? (im going to get a Bimac) and where can I find an octopus if looking? None of my tropical fish shops local to me carry them. sry about all the questions :)
     
  3. cuttlegirl

    cuttlegirl Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    I would recommend looking at this thread http://www.tonmo.com/cephcare/equipment.php

    Also this thread would probably help you... http://www.tonmo.com/community/index.php?threads/3487/

    Have you ever had a fish tank before? If not, you might want to start with an easier animal than an octopus.

    I would also recommend visiting local aquariums and seeing their cephalopods. The Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach has a Giant Pacific Octopus, Nautilus and sometimes they even have cuttlefish.
     
  4. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    I have been looking at aquariums around here, i am to far from that one though. I have already looked at those links and think i could handle it. BUt since I am new, i will accept your advice. I am thinking of getting a 50 gallon glass aquarium and buying some fish like you said. Then after a couple of months if I feel im ready remove the fish and use that tank as my octopuses. Good or bad idea?


    -thank you for your help :)
     
  5. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    To be blunt, $350 isn't a lot of money to set up a ceph tank. Many of us have more than $1000 in our systems. That doesn't mean it can't be done by scrounging and buying used equipment, but even then it remains unlikely that you won't exceed your budget

    To continue being blunt, its much more difficult without a fair amount of sw fish-keeping experience. I spent about ~$350 setting up a 30g clownfish tank for about a year before I started setting up my 75g octo tank, just to learn the ins and outs. You might try doing something like that, and then start scrounging pieces and putting money under your mattress for a larger ceph tank later on. Your idea of setting up the tank and learning how everything works with fish and then moving to an octo is good, however fish can be difficult to find a new home for, and it will be a real stretch with your budget. Make a list of everything you need, and start cruising eBay and web sw boards that have buy/sell/trade forums and see how close you can come to your goal.

    You're luckier than you think you are because you're in octopus mecca. There's a company in Carlsbad called Octopets that breeds your two-spot octopus as pets. When you get your octopus, you won't have to pay $35 shipping like the rest of us! And if you don't even want to drive up there, you can buy one that comes from their eggs at Fishsupply, which I think is right there in San Diego!

    Good luck!

    Dan
     
  6. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    thanks a bundle Dhyslop, I am scanning ebay for deals on octopus supplies so when I think i am ready (ill post it on the forums if i do) I wont be on a wild goose chasefor parts. In the meantime though, I am going to setup a very simple 40g sw tank for some fish, and then give them back to the place I work at when I am done (I will probably keep them for a good 10 months or so). Oh and thank you for menchening that store in carlsbad, I am going to check it out very soon, just to get a feel of what im looking at interms of cost.

    Thank you!
     
  7. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    Be careful--its easy to fall in love with the fish you get. You might end up setting up a second tank because you enjoy having the fish tank too. Especially since 40 gallons is certainly on the low end for keeping on a bimac. Most TONMOers recommend 50+.

    Do you work at a fish store, and is your employee discount useful?

    Dan
     
  8. Armstrong

    Armstrong Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    On a scale of 1-10, keeping a cephalopod would totally be a 10. It's extrememly high mantainence and a lot ivolbed because the smallest mistakes can lead to the animal dying. Water chemistry plays a major role in keeping these animals as well as supplies and the right salt water. If I were you, I would do a lot of research on their biology as well as captivity-keeping before getting one.
     
  9. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    Just to let you know, I wasnt going to use the 40g for the octopus, I was just going to use that as a starter, for the octo I was thinking of getting a 55g. Yes, in a way I work at a fish store...fish/reptile dept of my local petsmart. the employee discount is very useful, I can nick about 5 bucks off the tank (its not tremendous but it helps :)

    As for it being a 10 on the scale...I think im going to take my time with it and talk with them guys down at octopets (I am so relieved that that place is there!) and see what I can handle otherwise, I think me getting an octopus is a long way off. thank you for all your help :)
     
  10. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    just curious, there is a thread on the forums of a guy setting up a 55g aquarium...he has had no experience with sw aquariums though, and he seems to be going 100mph on getting it setup..from what your telling me I should take my time, but you are encouraging this guy. (once again, just curious)
     
  11. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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  12. Armstrong

    Armstrong Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Your right, but I don't think iv encouraged him. I havent really looked at that topic lately so im not sure if he's done the research he was supposed to, but just take my advice for the safest road and do alot of research. Iv studied them since I was 6...you really need to know these animals biologically as well as captivity keeping. Cuz if you dont know them biologically, certain things happening in the aquarium might astonish you or suprise you...and of course not knowing the right captivity keeping skills will just make the animal die. But this goes to everyone new to keeping a cephalopod. They just arent the pets that you can go to the store and pick up...you just have to do the right research before-hand.

    There's always a handful of newbies coming on here and mis-understanding them and just wanting them anxiously. But good luck.
     
  13. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    I think you have misunderstood me, i am not going to rush out and buy one, I have been studying them since I was 10 and know that they ae very touchy animals. As for captivity, i have read that they are tough demanding, but rewarding. I just dont want to be mistaken for a noob in the cephalapod area on this site. I am a noob considering captive care for I have never had a sw tank. But am doing furious research.

    Thank you!
     
  14. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    Hi MB,

    I had written a nice long post on used equipment, but I lost it due to a computer problem.

    Anyway, the equipment is really what I find most challenging in SW. In fw tanks you don't have skimmers and you rarely see sumps, refugiums, overflows, returns and related plumbing. In the thread I believe you're referring to, even though the person only has FW experience, he posted a picture of the new sw setup. He was questioning whether an octo was for him, and upon seeing how much skill he had in his plumbing I thought I'd give him some encouragement. I apologize if it appears that I have a double-standard.

    I couldn't find the exact eBay item you linked to, so I can't comment on the price. You'll probably do a lot better on used equipment than new stuff with your employee discount. Just keep an eye out for copper--before you buy any equipment, ask if they've ever put medication in. If they did, you don't want it, because copper kills cephs and never leaves a tank.

    Good luck!

    Dan
     
  15. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    Oh! sorry about the link, I dont know what happened to it. Anyway, somebody was selling a 55g tank with a protien skimmer and filtration included with a stand (wood, pretty nice) for 200$. I understand you DHyslop on the other guy, I was just curious to see what that was about. Anyway, im checking for gear over ebay and clearing room for the sw fish tank that I posted im putting up. Thank you for all your help!
     
  16. Armstrong

    Armstrong Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    No, I was just stating that many "people" join here anxiously wanting one without any knowledge. Your not one of them though cuz your actually willing to do research before hand. Sorry if it sounded offensive.
     
  17. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    mb--

    Also pay attention to brands on some of the equipment. You can spend well over a hundred dollars on a skimmer that's absolutely worthless. Same with overflows, some of the designs are inherently flawed and can lead to floods.

    A good thing to do is make a list of brand names of equipment you're thinking about buying, then search the reefcentral.com message boards to find out what people are saying. Their search function rarely works, but google allows you to search one website by specifying the domain name.

    Dan
     
  18. binaryterror

    binaryterror GPO Registered

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    I just read this whole thread. I am the "guy" from the other thread. I have been doing research for the past month or so. Reading every day. I set up the tank, all excited. I bought some Damsels to cycle the tank. Now, I really like fish. Also, after reading this thread, I aslo realized that I am not ready for an Octo. I have the knowledge... I just dont have the first-hand experience needed.

    I am going to keep my tank a fish-only w/live rock. I am going to start with easy fish, like Clowns, Royal Gramma's, ect. Then, I will move to more difficult fish, Butterflyfish, Tangs, Large Angels, ect. Once I have the experience of maintaining water quality, keeping up with waterchanges and such, I will try setting up an Octo tank if I still have the interest after keeping all the amazing fish.

    So, you see. These guys are great. They helped me a TON, I was determined and mind-set on an Octopus. I read and tought I was ready, and as I said above... I forgot about first hand experience. Knowing how to maintain the water, and keeping it all clean. AFter getting the Damsels, I also realized that I cannot forget one thing. These fish are hardy, so if I forget something they wont die. But eventually, I wont forget anything. It will be part of my day. And when that happens, I will know I am ready for the next challenge. Whether its corals, or an Octo... I know that there will be at least one more thing that I will need to remember.

    So I am just saying, maybe you should do what I am doing. Take small steps to harder things. it will get you more experience, plus you will be able to know what to do. As you are keeping the fish, you can read, and read some more. But just be sure that you dont just keep Damsels, or really easy fish. try to evntually keep harder fish, more demanding fish to make sure that you will be able to suit the Octos needs. If you still want one after the fish tank.

    Well thats my lecture for today. I hope this helps you.
     
  19. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    sorry binary terror for maybe sounding a little offensive to you in that post, that wasnt what I was trying to get at, i was just wondering if that would also work. The process you explained is the course of action Dhyslop also recommened and im beginning it right now. also, I have been working with cephs for 6 years, just thought that you seemed rushing it a little but now i see that you have been doing your homework :)

    sorry if I offened you,

    Mike
     
  20. marineboy

    marineboy Wonderpus Registered

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    Also, armstrong. I understand now. :)
     

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