tankmates

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by mystic_january, Nov 25, 2005.

  1. mystic_january

    mystic_january Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    I just recently found out that you can actually have an octopus as a pet! lol i had no idea but now i want one!

    after about 3 years of wanting a seahorse I finally got a job and bought myself a 29gallon tank (i dont have much space in my room for anything bigger) there was a post about keeping seahorses with octopus which stated that certian types of fully grown octopus and fully grown seahorses will get along. ill assume the only ones that would get along will be very small octopus. thats good all i want is a small one because my tank is small aswell, but whats the name of it?? and would it be ok in a 29 gallon tank?

    i dont want to overly fill my tank with plants and rock because that leaves less room for the inhabitants (ill get a little cave or something if i get an octopus) right now i have only about 2 lbs of live rock and a little treasure chest cave thing. i am in the process of cycling the tank.

    this is all i want for the 29 gallon tank
    -a seahorse
    -a clown fish
    -a starfish
    -an octopus

    seems like alot to me, but a clownfish and the starfish are small. and i dont plan on cluttering my tank with unnessesary rock and stuff anyway i would like to know if a mini octopus would bother any of these. and if there is such thing as a docile mini octo.

    thanks
     
  2. mystic_january

    mystic_january Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    hmm alright another question, over the past 2 or 3 days ive noticed my live rock is turning deep orange, at first i thought this was cool but upon closer inspection i found that the orange stuff is all over the crushed coral gravel, and on the top of the filters.. :S it kinda looks like dust or algaie but its bright orangie brown.. all i have in my tank is:
    an undergravel filter, crushed coral for gravel, 2 lbs of live rock, a small fake plant, a hard plastic hollow treasure chest thing, heater, thermometer, filter, salinity thing, and above is a light.

    like i said im in the process of cycling the tank, is this part of the cycling? am i keeping the light left on for too long? is this a bad thing? i did water tests, the ammonia is increasing like it should, nitrite is still quite low, around .01. the salinity is fine, the ph is fine, i think the ph test is a little hard to tell because i can only see it in the aquarium lighting, in my room lighting it looks brown instead of blue like its supposed to.
     
  3. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    A 29 gallon would probably be suitable for a pygmy octo, but I don't think the tankmates would be a good idea. The octopus would probably get along alright with the starfish, but I think mixing them with any fish, seahorses included, isn't a wise choice. Octos seem to be pretty bipolar with fish. Either a) they will kill everything moving or b) they will be afraid of everything moving and never, ever come out of their den.

    At $50++ for a captive bred seahorse, it isn't an inexpensive experiment. Seahorses also prefer a bit different environment. I believe they usually like taller tanks rather than wide ones and like a lot of macroalgae to anchor themselves to.

    Dan
     
  4. mystic_january

    mystic_january Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    would it make a differance if i had the seahorse first? or if i added it after the octopus settled in? like how its easier to add a puppy to a house with a cat than it is to add a kitten to a house with a dog, sort of thing?
     
  5. lockburn

    lockburn O. bimaculoides Registered

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    Also, clowns can be a little too aggressive for seahorses and stress them out. I couldn't imagine keeping horses with an octo, I wouldn't imagine either would like the situation much.
     
  6. Mizu

    Mizu Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    29 gallons is not a suitable amount of real estate for ONE octo let alone and Octo and something else.
    Octos MOVE mine was constantly roaming around
     
  7. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    Mizu, you're absolutely right about tank size for most octos we keep. However, some of the very small pygmy octos like O. mercatoris could be kept in a 30 gallon and have a lot of room. However, they're not easy to find.

    Nancy
     
  8. mystic_january

    mystic_january Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    i only want a little pygmy octo.. and the clownfish would be the false clownfish (the most docile kind) ive heard they are no problem with seahorses.. :( it seems everything i want wont go with anything else. seahorses ive been told shouldnt be kept with anything else, and most starfish ive been told can be harmfull to things, and now an octopus seems a bad suit for anything aswell :( im gonna be stuck with 30 gallon tank with nothing but a clownfish :( *sigh are you sure even a little pygmy octo would eat a seahorse??
     
  9. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    I won't say it will necessarily eat it, but I guarantee you neither will be very happy with the other one present. Both seahorses and octopuses like their own dedicated setups. If you're interested in clownfish, why don't you get two? If you get two that are the right sizes they will grow a pair bond. Single clownfish can grow kind of lonesome.

    Dan
     
  10. OCTO OAKLEY

    OCTO OAKLEY O. bimaculoides Registered

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    I THINK YOU WOULD PROBABLLY BE THA HAPPIEST WITH SEAHORSES SINCE THATS PRETTY MUCH THA REASON YOU GOT THA TANK RIGHT? AND YOU WILL PRETTY MUCH ALWAYS BE ABLE TO SPOT THEM UNLIKE OCTOS, YOU WILL PROBABLLY END UP STRESSING OUT BECAUSE YOU WILL RARLEY SEE IT AND THAT WILL LEAD TO YOU POSSIBLY ENDING UP TEARING YOUR TANK APART TO FIND HIM. THAT OR HE EXCAPED AND THATS ANOTHER THING YOU GOT TO OCTOPROOF YOUR TANK TO HAVE ONE OR ELSE THEY WILL MOST LIKELY FIND A WAY OUT IF NOT SEALED PROPERLY! SO IF THAT LEFT YA THINKING YOU WANNA START WITH SEAHORSES THEN I WOULD SAY THATS THA BEST WAY TO GO! AND IF IT DIDNT SWERVE YOUR PATH AWAY FROM OCTOS THEN I WOULD SAY DO ALOT OF RESEARCH MAN AND PRAY TO GOD YOU CAN FIND A PYGMY CUZ OCTOS GET BIG FAST! OH YEAH AND ONE MORE THING THAT BROWNISH ORANGE STUFF GROWING ON YOUR ROCK AND GRASS IS ALGE DONT WORRY MAN THATS JUST THA START OF YOUR STRANGE OCCURANCES THAT WILL COME FROM YOUR TANK ONE DAY YOU WILL SEE A FEW SNAILS ON THA GLASS AND THA NEXT YOU MIGHT SEE A STARFISH! WELL GOOD LUCK TO YA ON YOUR TANK AND MAKE YOUR CHOICE WISLEY!
     
  11. TidePool Geek

    TidePool Geek O. vulgaris Registered

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    Mystic January wrote:
    :( it seems everything i want wont go with anything else.

    Hi MJ,

    I'm afraid that's exactly the case; in fact, it may be a complete
    understatement!

    First off - Tank size: You're limited, as Nancy said, to only the
    smallest species such as O. mercatoris. The problem there is that, at
    present, these are only available as wild by-catch specimens. As such,
    you'd be getting an animal of indeterminate age that has probably
    already lived out most of its very short lifespan. [I can't find a
    reference but I'm pretty sure its lifespan is 1 year or less.]

    Next - Octopus with Seahorse: Compatibility with an octopus isn't a
    matter of territory or dominance. Octos are predators and very hungry
    ones at that. An octo sees everything in his world in terms of whether
    or not he can kill and eat it. Since seahorses are such weak swimmers
    they would be easy prey for even a small octo. I don't know too much
    about seahorses but if their only defenses are thick skin and
    camouflage an octo wouldn't even be slowed down by them. OTOH: If
    seahorses happen to have some sort of chemical defense (which seems
    unlikely) like a bad taste or toxic slime, there's a good chance that
    the octo will have killed it in the process of learning about the
    defense.

    Then - Octopus with Clownfish: Clowns depend on a host anemone for
    defense. Without such a host the clown will be dinner. Further, I
    think it's fair to say that a clown without a host will be stressed
    even if there aren't any predators to threaten him. Here's a link to
    some additional info about the clownfish you mentioned:
    http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Amphiprion_ocellaris.html
    So, if you want a clown you should also have a suitable host anemone.
    Now you've got an illumination problem. Most, if not all, host
    anemones utilize symbiotic algae to provide some (but not all) of
    their nutrition. Because of that they need a lot of light and most
    octos don't like that at all. If your aquarium has enough light to
    keep the anemone happy your octo will probably stay hidden most of the
    time. Another problem has to do with space. An anemone that's large
    enough to be a suitable host will take up a significant percentage of
    the available real estate in your tank which will limit the octo's
    freedom of movement. [BTW: I'm probably the only one on this forum
    that thinks anemones and octos can be kept together at all but that's
    only with quite a large tank.]

    Finally - Octopus with Sea Star: With a couple of exceptions octos and
    stars shouldn't bother each other. BUT there's some question about
    whether a star should be kept in a home aquarium at all. Tropical
    stars are simply not very well understood in terms of diet and other
    requirements and they often die in a fairly short period. Before
    getting a star you should determine which species are of interest and
    then do some pretty serious research about their requirements before
    you buy. DO NOT take the advice of your LFS at face value! Much of the
    info. found in the trade is little more than hearsay. Here are some
    links to Ron Shimek's articles about sea stars; the first two deal
    with keeping them in a home tank while the second two are mainly
    background information:
    http://web.archive.org/web/20020804172027/www.animalnetwork.com/fish2/aqfm/1998/april/wb/default.asp
    http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2004-12/rs/index.php

    http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2004-10/rs/index.php
    http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2004-11/rs/index.php

    Compatibly yours,

    Alex
     
  12. mystic_january

    mystic_january Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    hey thanks guys i really appreciate all the info you have given me to think about, and thanks uhh OCTO OAKLEY for finally easing my mind about that brown stuff. i think im going to try with maybe a couple seahorses and a starfish.. well the starfish will come in after i get some algaie. but if the seahorses don't work out im definately going to look into geting an octopus. it would be nice if they could all just get along and not eat each other, or steal each others food. but oh well. if anyone has experiance with seahorses, please dont be shy to give me some pointers. i am completely new at salt water aquariums, 2 weeks ago i didnt even know how to make the water salty. lol dont get me wrong, I have done research but theres only so much you can learn from textbooks. thanks guys im really bummed that i cant get an octo, at least with my seahorses.

    but yea if anyone has sudgestions on what kinds of seahorses are good, where to get them, how to feed them etc etc etc let me know :)
     
  13. mystic_january

    mystic_january Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    wow i didnt even see page 2 till now thanks alex for the essay you posted :P i really dont want to take anything that has been living in the vast ocean and confining it to my 29 gallon fish tank :( i think thats just horrible. as for the clownfish and seahorses i dont think im going to try the two together either, like u said the clownfish dont feel safe without a big annenomie..
     
  14. OCTO OAKLEY

    OCTO OAKLEY O. bimaculoides Registered

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    HEY MJ I HAVE KEPT SEAHORSES BEFORE AND HAVE HAD SUSCESS WITH THEM AND I FOUND THAT THERE PRETTY EASY IF YA KNO WHAT YOUR DOING REALLY THA MAIN THING IS FEEDING THEM AND WATER CONDITIONS THA FOOD THEY NEED MUST BE REALLY SMALL I RECOMEND MYSIS SHRIMP! AND YOU PROBABLLY ALREADY KNOW THA IDEAL TANK CONDITIONS RITE? WELL IF NOT I GOT THEM RITE HERE THE TEMPATURE SHOULD BE 72-78°F THE SPECIFIC GRAVITY SHOULD BE 1.020-1.025 pH 8.1-8.4! AND IT WOULD PROBABLLY MAKE IT EASIER IF YOU CAN FIND A TANK BRED ONE THEY ARE ALREADY ACCUSTOMED TO THA MYSIS SHRIMP! AND YOUS SHOULD PROBABLLY GET SOME SEAGRASS OR KELP FOR THEM TO CLING ON TO. OH YEAH AND YOU COULD ALWAYS KEEP A PIPEFISH WITH THEM OR SOME SMALL GOBIES, FIREFISH AND MAYBE A PERCULA CLOWN BUT THOS ARE A USE WITH CAUTION TYPE OF DEAL BUT I DO KNOW PIPEFISH WILL BE PERFECTLY OKAY! WELL I HOPE THIS HELPS IF YA HAVE ANY QUESTIONS JUST ASK!
     
  15. DHyslop

    DHyslop Architeuthis Supporter

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    Pretty much nothing goes with seahorses. Like octos, they prefer a species tank. A tank for either has to be set up with special considerations: seahorses like very little flow and prefer tall tanks where they can move up and down quite a bit. People often use 30-40 gallon hex tanks for them. Seahorses also have a very simple digestive system that isn't effective at storing food, meaning they should be fed multiple times per day. Even if you get captive bred horses there's no guarantee they'll take frozen food, so you should be raising rotifers and things for them to eat in another tank.

    To be honest, I probably would recommend clownfish to you. A captive bred false percula has typically never seen an anemone in its life--many a reefer has put anemones in their tanks just to be snubbed by their clowns. Sometimes it takes months or years for a CB clownfish to start hosting, and it often involves a little sleight of hand: right now I have a photo of an anemone taped to the side of the tank to get them used to the idea of having one. If they still dislike it in a few weeks, I will replace it with a photograph of the same anemone with a clown in it.

    If I were you I'd let the tank cycle for another month or so and get two very young clowns one a little bit bigger than the other. If you ever do want to get an anemone, there's a few things to consider. If you get false perculas (Amphiprion ocellaris), there's no anemone they naturally host in that will fit in your tank. About the only anemone for you is the bubble-tip anemone. False percs can sometimes be convinced or tricked into hosting these, but no guarantees. There are other species of clowns that do naturally host BTAs, but they will cost you a bit more. I think false percs are the prettiest, but many people at reefcentral.com would scoff at that :)

    Also, every anemone needs more light than the flourescent light on your tank can provide. That light is fine for the clowns, but you would need to buy some power compacts for a BTA. Anemones usually like to have a bit of current through the tank. Remember these are not sessile creatures, and if you put it where it looks pretty in the tank, it will move to where it feels happy :)

    Go to www.reefcentral.com and look in their forums. They have a whole message board dedicated to clownfish and anemones. They also have an area for seahorses if you want to learn some more about those. There's enough reading material there to keep you busy for a few weeks :)

    Dan
     
  16. lockburn

    lockburn O. bimaculoides Registered

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    Seahorses do indeed prefer species tanks. I have two identical tanks, one for a group of seahorses, the other for my octo, plumbed together via a sump. Unfortunately that leaves me no place to keep other fish. I think I'll need to add a third tank to keep clowns, butterflys, etc.
     
  17. Mermaid

    Mermaid Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    I think sticking to seahorses is a good idea for the moment, then in the future you can consider getting another larger tank to keep your octopus.
    And yes you can keep seahorses with some fish (i wouldn't recommend clown fish either...too aggressive) as long as they won't bother the seahorses or are to quick and will steal all of the food, leaving the seahorses to starve...remember seahorses are very slow. A good tankmate for that size aqurium is a green/blue manderin fish or something similar.
     

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