SeaMax(ine) - unknown

Discussion in 'Cephalopod Journals' started by DWhatley, Jan 11, 2013.

  1. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    I got a great birthday package from KP Aquatics yesterday with a lot of fun extras and my new little guy. I was very excited when I looked at this energizer bunny of an octo because I am 75-80% guessing it is the same unknown species I kept in 2011 (Monty - I don't know why the initial posts are marked 2006). The more I looked at pictures, the more I felt that they may be the same and then I noticed an absence of webbing. Fortunately, the little guy came out again tonight and I found the missing, very thin, spotted webbing that would keep my hopes alive.

    After acclimation, it (thinking he because of what appear to be enlarged suckers in the acclimation photo but it may not be sexually mature) disappeared and I had not expected to see him again for awhile. However, after lights out, he was on the glass not once but twice and dancing madly. The dancing may have to do with not understanding the glass wall. It has an arm length of about 3 inches and mantle of about an inch (measured against my index finger while on the glass) it was a tiny whirlwind the two times it came out. Very rapid and extreme color changes and very curious. I have observed that the behavior seen in the first two weeks is usually different than after full acclimation so I am hoping, like Monty, he will be diurnal. I don't think the over activity was senescent but I have not seen one act quite like this. It is somewhat reminiscent of the aculeatus dance and you can see an unexpected resemblance in my initial acclimation photos.

    Yeti was moved to her big girl tank (the tube tank) over the weekend. She is still small for O. briareus but her arms are quite long and I believe she may have needed the larger tank so the timing worked well to make room for this one. If it grows to Monty size, this tank (~ 40 gallons + 15 gallon sump) will be suitable for his/her life.



     

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  2. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    AWESOME!
     
  3. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Thinking about the name SeaMax (because I compared her first night to the Energizer Bunny and we are looking at the Ford C-Max electric plugin) but I am now thinking female so another name is likely to be chosen.

    She is currently very nocturnal and does not curl her third right arm. We have seen her out at about 3:00 AM and has stayed out for better than an hour. As long as you move slowly she gets curious and will come to the glass to observe as well as move closer to fingers wiggled on the glass. I have not seen anything that looks like Monty's eye spot but I have not seen her clearly in the day yet.

    I think she took a piece of shrimp tonight. I was moving the stick to possible locations (when she goes into the LR, she is fully invisible) and lost the food. I needed to move two pieces of rock to retrieve it and felt the barest touch of tiny suckers. She was up inside a piece of rock that I had moved so I left it at an angle and moved the food to one of the openings. Eventually, she took the shrimp off the feeding stick and into the rock. Later I noted an urchin under the rock pile so I don't know if she ate the shrimp or not but I did not see brissle worms.
     
  4. corw314

    corw314 Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Awwww....very cute!!! Congrats on your ceph birthday arrrival!!!
     
  5. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    The good news - I am 80% sure SeaMax is the same species as Monty. I got a clear look at her brown eyespot on both sides. She is about half the size of Monty and has been nocturnal, hence the 20% of unsure.

    The bad news - I am afraid she is about to brood. She has not come out for 4 nights and is deeply hidden in the LR. I have spotted her a couple of times by disrupting the rock (actually she spotted me and swiped at my finger) and the small crabs I put in the tank are turning up as empty casings. I also saw sucker shed a couple of days ago but otherwise, it is just an empty tank. The fact that the crabs are fully cleaned make me hope she is eating and that they are not just dieing in the tank and being consumed by the clean up crew.

    The wait and see news - I really like this species and have no idea if they are small or large egged. If SeaMax is indeed brooding and the eggs are fertile, I may get to find out. This species would be the perfect octopus to raise for home aquariums if it turns out to be a large egg species and Monty was size typical. SeaMax' mantle seemed to double very, very quickly (almost over night). This is quite different from my experience with O. briareus or O. mercatoris. The tiny O. hummelincki I had that began brooding soon after being put in the tank acted similarly by going very deep in the LR. I knew where she was and could sometimes see her looking up under the tank but then she just vanished without producing hatchlings or a carcass. I did not note a rapid mantle growth on that one.

    An oddity I can't explain - all my octo tanks contain one red brittle star and they are all named Pesky. This particular type of brittle is quite attractive, will often be seen (if there is an octopus in the tank, otherwise hard to find), and usually lives close to the octopus' den (and is helpful in locating a shy animal). I saw that Pesky in SeaMax' tank had moved to the left side rock (which allowed me to find SeaMax) and then it just disappeared. There is another serpent and a different brittle in the tank but they don't follow the octos like the "Peskys" and there is nothing unusual about them but I cannot find SeaMax's Pesky anywhere.
     
  6. Teacher Kim

    Teacher Kim GPO Registered

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    What a cool little octopus! If you get a chance I's love to see a pic of Pesky! Sounds like something I'd like to get!!
     
  7. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Well, I think I am in for an attempt at small egg hatchlings :cry:. SeaMaxine has not come out of the LR. I have seen sucker shed twice but no other trace of her (or Pesky, Neal swears there was not one in the tank and that I must be mistaken). The harlequin serpent has now moved under the rock where she is concealed.
     
  8. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    I have not seen Maxine since the post on the 19th. I removed and inspected (and shook :oops:) the rock (eeping it in the water) where she was last thought to have taken as a den and could not see her but after holding it a bit, an arm reached out in annoyance. We have been putting small crabs in the tank but I don't see the stripped remains (but I don't see the crabs after a few days either) so I am continuing with the thought that I may see hatchlings sometime next month. Most small egg species would have hatched by now (but not always) and I would love for this animal to produce fully formed benthic young but chances are not in my favor. I am at least hoping to see hatchlings!
     
  9. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Of course I would finally post something on Maxine yesterday only to check the tank with a flashlight early this AM (on my way to bed) to find that she had died. I noticed a hermit trying to get into a large hole and the flashlight revealed a very white, unresponsive arm as well as an active black one. I looked into the rock crevices and did not find any eggs but I suspect if there had been any the black brittle found them. Maxine had not been dead long but most of her front arms had been consumed by the clean-up crew.

    I did take a picture of her final size but had a minor accident with my desk yesterday, toppling the credenza and its contents to the floor. Painfully, my camera was on the unit and did not survive the fall (discovered when I tried photographing her). I have my old camera as a backup but the photos were never as clear and I hate the video format. I am between contracts again so it will have to do for awhile.
     
  10. Teacher Kim

    Teacher Kim GPO Registered

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    That's too bad you lost her already. I'm definitely beginning to understand your "box of chocolates" philosophy!!
     
  11. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    SeaMaxine's final pics

    Some years ago Sedna noted that one way we could get information on sizing was to photo graph the animals with a ruler after they died. The size will be small than at their peak if they die of senescence but it give a common denominator for comparing animals. I have to do it very quickly because it is very sad but I try to remember to take this kind of final photo and suggest others try to do the same.



    Notice her eye in this picture. The blue fluorescence is NOT an artifact of the camera and I was afraid my old Minolta would not capture it.

     

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