Starting Octo Tank

Discussion in 'Tank Talk' started by John007h, Jul 18, 2010.

  1. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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    Helloo, first off this site is extremely helpful, I've been reading all the articles and doing as much research as I can here.

    I'm starting an octopus tank with a buddy of mine, we're both relatively new aquarists but we have a lot of help from co workers and friends that have kept salt water fish tanks and our local aquarium supplier is very helpful/knowledgable.

    So far we've picked up the tank that most interested us yesterday, it came with a stand. Heres the link to the ad: http://london.kijiji.ca/c-pets-accessories-65-gallon-fish-tank-with-stand-lights-filter-system-W0QQAdIdZ215472403
    We paid $150 for it.

    The seller used it exclusively for fresh water previously, and hasn't used it for the last two years, we've since been cleaning it.

    My friend works at a glass workshop and is going to specially cut glass to place over the hood and fasten it to prevent the octopus from escaping, we're still sorting out all the details.


    Can anyone help me along, after following the articles on ceph care with whats left to go.

    I'd like a canister filter, but they tend to be rather expensive, heres a filter for up to a 70gal tank (ours is 65), would this be okay? http://www.bigalsonline.ca/BigAlsCA/ctl3664/cp17903/si1316627/cl0/marinelandpenguin350bpowerfilter

    Protein Skimmer I've found, I've also seen them on kijiji sometimes when people are selling them: http://www.bigalsonline.ca/BigAlsCA/ctl3664/cp18090/si1320346/cl0/coralifesuperskimmerneedlewheel65gallon

    We're buying live rock from our local shop and our friend is giving us some rock from his previous salt water tank on top of that, how many lbs total do you think we should shoot for, I've heard 1lb per gallon.

    The website I've been linking to is that of our local shop, so they carry the same products, if anyone can help me pick out the final necessary equipment from here that'd be great.

    I think we're going to get some molllies first and have them for around three months to break in the tank before we think of ordering an octopus (which they are asking $99 for, but the sales rep wasn't 100% sure about species, he said to come take a look later this week and they'll have a list ready)

    Thanks for your help! My buddy and I are pretty excited to get this tank up and running.
     
  2. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    :welcome: to TONMO

    Octopuses are very messy creatures and they require lots of filtration. That Hang On Back filter I think will not be enough to keep up with the demands of an octopus, maybe two of the filters. It will also be hard to seal the lid with that style filter. Your best bet is to get a sump and go with either a simple biological filtration system or a wet/dry filter. the sump also makes a better place to put your protein skimmer instead of hanging it. The skimmer you have chosen is a good brand but i personally think you should get the next size up.


    [​IMG]
    i use this wetdry from ProClear Aquatics with a similar protein skimmer and I love the set up, it would be perfect for you tank.
     
  3. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    :welcome: to TONMO. It sounds like you've been reading most of the good content, so I don't have anything to add...
     
  4. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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  5. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    AVOID THE JEBO. I didn't and had to replace it. It is junk. Go with the Coralife (next size up). It is an inexpensive skimmer that has out proformed anything in its price range (or even at twice its price range).

    I will ditto everything CaptFish mentions. Go with some kind of sump or the canister (sump HIGHLY preferable). The hang on can't be octo proofed and won't handle the waste.

    There is a primary concern about the tank having been a freshwater setup. It is common with freshwater to use copper as a parasite treatment. The silicone on glass tanks is known to hold and leach copper for a very long time and SOP is to not use any glass tank that has ever had copper meds as even small amounts of copper will kill an octopus in the confines of an aquarium.
     
  6. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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    Hey, I asked the previous owner if he used any copper-containing meds and he said he never had anything copper in the tank, and never even used medications on his fish.

    I'm cleaning the tank extensively, when I get all the equipment I'm going to let the tank cycle for a month or so, add some damsels for another 3 months and eventually get the octopus. The whole project is specifically for the outcome of getting an octopus, so I'm taking very small steps and doing as much research I can.

    Quick question though, a friend of mine offered to give me about 40lbs of crushed coral to use as a substrate, its extremely fine, he had it for a couple years and kept crushing it/removing any odd larger pieces, will that still be abrasive on the octopus, I couldn't tell much of a difference between the crushed coral he gave me and fine sand, but then again, I'm not an octopus.
     
  7. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    The crushed coral is good stuff. I use a mix of that and 'fiji pink Live Sand'. The coral helps to keep your pH down, or so I'm told.
     
  8. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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  9. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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    Bought a filter today.
    http://www.bigalsonline.ca/BigAlsCA/ctl3664/cp17898/si1319895/cl0/eheimfilter2215pluskit

    Store staff recommended it, and reviews online point to it being one of the better filters on the market. It'll cycle my tank about 3 times on hour.

    I also bought 20lbs of live fiji sand (bringing me to a total of 50lbs of sand).

    Question now, what should I do for live rock? One store offered me 5.99/lb for fiji live rock. Also this guy is selling his live rock at $3/lb http://london.kijiji.ca/c-pets-other-250Lbs-of-Cured-Liverock-for-sale-Need-it-gone-3-Lb-W0QQAdIdZ209997107#

    ^ Think that'd be good??
     
  10. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    The skimmer has my vote.

    Ask if the rock is still in an aquarium or if it is in a bucket (or worse, dry). If it is still in an aquarium and local to pick up, it is a great deal. If it has been kept in a bucket with circulating water, still not something you will easily find. If it is dry, forget it.

    I will advise against the damsels or any other cycle fish. You can cycle by building and feeding a decent cleanup crew without adding any fish. brittle and serpent stars will eat chuncks of thawed frozen shrimp and help your cycle along without the need to add fish that may or may not cause a serious problem with the octopus. Fish are not a particularly good food for the octos but they will eat them (or parts of them) and IMO it is a waste of animal and money to use them just to have something in a tank to eat and poop. Hermit crabs and snails can also be added early in the cycle. Some will become appropriate supper but many will survive to help clean the tank. It never hurts to add a couple of peppermint shrimp after there is no ammonia. They are usually helpful in controlling aptasia a pair will often spawn and provide a little food for some of the other critters and often learn to avoid an octopus (not always though but they are appropriate food if they get too curious).
     
  11. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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    He said the "Rock cam directly out of my tank in buckets with a powerhead circulating through it"

    Is it okay to use? $3/lb is pretty good, considering I don't pay taxes on it, the store live rock would be $6.72/lb
     
  12. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    It is likely as good or better than the store rock, depending upon how long it has been in the buckets. Most store rock is kept in a bin and slowly dies (this is not always true but very much the case in my neck of the woods). If it has never been dry I would go for it over the store bought stuff. My actual preference is to get it from the people that farm it but the shipping is more painful than you are prepared to pay. IMO rock from someone's tank is the next best choice.
     
  13. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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    He said he took it out of his mature tank 6 weeks ago, think I'm gunna go for it. Probably 40lbs, I think that's all I need, I wanna give him room to move around : )
     
  14. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Too much is better than too little. In addition to giving you more filtration, octos are shy, they need to feel they can hide and be in the dark to sleep. Forcing them to be seen stresses them. A pound a gallon is minimum for filtration and the better recommendations are 1.5 to 2 pounds per gallon.
     
  15. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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    Hey soooo

    I went to buy the live rock, agreed on 40lbs for $100 ($2.5/lb). When I got there he offered the entire lot for $150, so I agreed.
    Turned out to be around 90 or so pounds, making it $1.70/lb. Rock had beautiful growth on it, looked just as good if not better than the rock at the aquarium stores I looked at.

    I've set up my Eheim canister filter after cleaning the tank about three or four times with my buddy. Filter is up and running, very nice quality and quiet, live rock is now all in place (1.5lb/gallon now).

    I'll post pics soon :D
     
  16. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    :thumbsup: Waiting for the first glimpses :grin:
     
  17. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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    Here's a shot from a little further away showing placement on the tile floor:
    [​IMG]

    ...and here's a closer look:
    [​IMG]

    sorry for the low-res blurriness, not a very good camera phone taking the shots lol
     
  18. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    Looking most excellent! The rockwork appears to give very nice choices for dens and is the most appropriately filled we have seen in awhile. You might want to move the ends in about 8" (4" on each side) as you have no way to clean where the rock touches the tank wall. General rule of thumb is to make a fist and if your hand from thumb to pinky cannot fit between the tank wall and the rock surface you have the rockwork too close to the outside wall (this obviously does not apply to the back wall but does to the front and to a lesser extent the sides unless you plan to leave the side wall uncleaned - nothing wrong with it but it will become opaque and algae covred over time).

    You will want to get some water movement around the rocks very soon. I typically put my Koralias facing each other with one in each corner or facing a wall that will "bounce" the current. I try to "bury" them with a piece of curved LR that can be easily moved if I have to reposition or replace them. The more circulation (but not necessarily current, just water movement) the better. The octos tend to hang out where the water is moving. My females have all chosen a brood den where there is current from the Koralias.
     
  19. John007h

    John007h Cuttlefish Registered

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    Good tip on moving the rocks in a bit, I'll be sure to do that.

    I'm going to pick up two power-heads tomorrow to get water moving and one of those magnetic scrubbers for the walls. The filter is doing a great job still and the sand seems to have settled after only a few hours.
     
  20. DWhatley

    DWhatley Cthulhu Staff Member Moderator

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    If the tank is glass, add a saltwater safe metal scraper to your list (otherwise get one for acrylic which will be saltwater safe by default). You will need more than the mag floats to clean the walls but be careful with the scrapers around the silicone seams. Unfortunately, it is more than "a bit". To understand fully how far, try to clean the sides without shifting the LR. Once you have occupants, you won't want to risk moving the rock to clean and you won't be able to clean if your hand won't fit (even though a scraper might). Alternately, as a very miniumum, run your new (to be acquired) mag float between the rock and the glass and be sure it won't get stuck. The longer handled scrapers help a lot with getting where the rock is a little too close but you still have to angle it so actually tryin to clean is the best way to test (and my continuously cut up hand are testimony to why I point this out).

    I am particularly fond of the Koralia's over other types of powerheads (as are many). The intake pressure is distributed (I have held my breath as my hatchlings have crawled over the ones in the tank and they have no issue not being pulled in) and the worst that may have happened is an arm tip or two have come up missing (with one cuttle fatality when it tried to zap food from the front). There is a snap on front housing that is somewhat mysterious when you get them but it will fit on the front, should be used and does help keep arms out of the critical area.
     

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