Pat - 1st Octopus

Discussion in 'Cephalopod Journals' started by snowmaker, Aug 31, 2010.

  1. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    We will call it Pat, and if determined sex later we can say Patrick or Patrice. Octopus arrived today from Live Aquaria as "assorted Indo - Pacific octopus".
    As soon as I opened the cooler, the rank smell hit me. The water was 68' and very cloudy. There was also a small clam in the bag that was out of it's shell.
    3 hr. drip acclimate, half way through I placed a 3/8" crab in the container. The octopus grabbed and killed it right away but discarded it within 1/2 hr. When released into the display it hung out on the sand for 10 minutes or so, then climbed up to the underside of a pseudo cave. Color changing occasionally and at times 1 or more arms hanging below it with the tips corkscrewed. I put 2 more very small crabs in there within sight, which it has ignored so far.
    Mantle is about 1.25" - 1.5". At least 1 arm is partially severed and another was severed some time ago as there is a new tip sprouting from the cut. I have no experience, but thought the arms seem pretty long - maybe 7" or 8", relative to body / mantle.
    The best pics so far are from in the acclimating container. One from in display shows 2 brown spots on a nearly dark mottled mantle.
    Any guesses yet?
     

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  2. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    3 more pics:
     

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  3. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    A.Aculeatus. looks just like my Waldo did. One of the tell tale signs is the star like shape around the eyes.

    :welcome: Pat!
     
  4. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    I registered Pat as A.aculeatus (subject to change) based on the supplier and the similarity to hummelincki at initial photos (particularly coloring and the purple/blue sucker edge) as well as the eye star.

    I would go ahead and report the fouled water and the presence of a dead clam (clam was likely attached to the animal and not just put in the bag). They are very good with their warranty but it helps to let them know (I think) what problems have occured. Hopefully Pat will recover but the fouled water is a major concern. Did you test for ammonia when it arrived? Acclimation is tricky when the shipping water is bad and I will exchange much more water in the beginning if there is ammonia (with an attempt to match the fouled water for PH, temp and salinity rather than that of the tank). I am not sure which is more stressful but the only one I have lost at acclimation came through a blizzard and the water was exceptionally cold (I also think the animal was post hatch).

    The only thing I can suggest watching (and I don't know of anything you can do) is Pat's breathing (hard to do when you have not had another, I know) and color. If breathing is regular and does not appear labored, that is a good sign. Watch for the mantle to not be able to fully color (at least we know she can show a dark color and does not stay totally grey). Again, a bit tricky to detect since they can alter portions of their skin. Hanging on the wall with corkscrewed arms in grey coloration is what we DON'T want to see.
     
  5. kpage

    kpage Wonderpus Supporter

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    Cool good luck! Trying to find an octo locally before I order from live aquaria. Basically if it makes it past the 24hr mark your golden. Mine was pretty friendly and would always come out when I was in the room, they are pretty fun!
     
  6. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Thanks Capt, D and kpage
    I just messaged L.A. with the concerns. I know they are very good honoring guarantees. My main concern is the health of the octopus.
    I think it has very good eyesight as it will react to my movements (by rapidly changing to very dark color) even several feet away from the tank.
    I really do not like seeing the curled arms, but It's surely still stressed.
    Time will tell I guess.
     
  7. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    I was very happy to see it sneak a peak.
     

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  8. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    ...and then crawl and swim around the tank. When I reached in there with a small crab in forceps it spooked and inked a bit, but nothing major, then settled into a different spot. Tough getting a good pic so far.
     

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  9. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Cool! Looking good so far, he seems to have good color.
     
  10. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Very cool! It was in the rock work, saw me approach the tank and came right out! It still won't eat the 3 legged, no claws crab...maybe tomorrow.
    Anyone know if it'll eat stomatella snails? There are many in there.
     

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  11. kpage

    kpage Wonderpus Supporter

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    I think you'll be fine. They usually stay in one spot, breathe really hard and turn white if they are stressed. Going to hide and then coming out to check you out, along with good coloration are good signs. Congrats!!! Don't worry about the food, he/she may just be getting used to the new environment.
     
  12. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    When you say curled arms are you referring to corkscrew or just curled. None of your pictures show the corkscrew that is a stress sign (that I could detect). Corkscrew curls look like the threads on a screw. I've not kept an Abdopus for more than a week but I believe they are much like the little macropuses (others please correct me if this is not the case) I have kept in that the arms are in continuous motion when they are on the glass so photographing is a challenge.
     
  13. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Initially, they were cork-screwed and dangling below it when it was attached to underside of rock.
    After lights-out last night it was very active and all over the display. Tank was not completely dark as there were lamps on. I dropped another very small crab nearly on top of it and it grabbed it right away. 15 min. later it still had it pinned up against glass. Was hard to tell but I think it was eating it.
     
  14. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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  15. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Pat took a crab last night and settled in a spot good for a photo. It's possible it could have eaten more as there are 4 or 5 still alive in there.
     

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  16. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    I am pretty sure Patrick is a male.:smile:
    That 3rd arm's tip is curled a bit 90% of the time and when it is exposed I can see about 1/8" - 3/16" light colored curved tip w/ out suckers.
    I'm not sure how much he's eaten because when I try to feed him a crab, if he doesn't take it the crab is on the loose. I can see 3 crabs in the tank right now.
    Should he eat daily? He's fairly active, but not impressed by me holding live crabs with forceps. He spends a lot of time scrunched up on the glass in upper corners, and lately in 1 of 2 caves I made.
     
  17. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Some people feed every other day, some every three days (usually more than a once a day feeding). Establishing a regular feeding pattern will take awhile.
     
  18. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Simon has been eating daily. So far I have been keeping some snails and a couple crabs in his tank so he can hunt at will.
     
  19. kpage

    kpage Wonderpus Supporter

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    So how do you compare the experience so far vs cuttlefish?
     
  20. snowmaker

    snowmaker Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    The octopus is much more interesting when it's out and about, but that is less frequent than with the cuttlefish.
    It's only been a week so I'm sure to see more of him.
     

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