Tips and Tricks for catching Octo in Florida


Hello everybody, I was hoping someone could supply me with some tips or tricks for catching Octopus. I live in Gainesville, FL and usually go fishing on the gulf or the atlantic every weekend so I was thinking I could try and catch one. I guess I would be looking for the O. briareus or at least thats the one I would like to find 8-).

I don't scuba dive so I would have to find one of these guys in knee deep water. I know I should look in tide pools but thats pretty vague. I was wondering if I should I look at night when they are active or during daylight? To be honest I've never seen an octopus in the wild, they seem to be a very elusive animal not to mention they have the best camoflauge i've seen which doesn't help when your looking for them. Does anyone have any spots where they had luck before and also should I attempt to catch them with bare hands or use a net? Any advice offered would be awesome, thanks for your time.


Haliphron Atlanticus
What i do is go at a negative tide and just keep flipping rocks until you cant flip rocks any more. The only thing is i dont know about that species. Since they are nocturnal.


Well from what I read the Briareus are reflective so I guess I can take a flashlight and try to spot them that way. So what species have you found? That has to be fun out there flipping rocks, I bet you find some other cool animals besides octos!


Pygmy Octopus

Hey I'm a UF student so Go Gators. Troy is Gator Bait.....

On another note, are you going this weekend to catch your octo? I have a couple resources for getting one that I have to check up on early in the week but if you are able to catch 2 I'd love to pay for your gas money in return for a pet of my own. Let me know if you're interested and how I can help!


yeah, that was another blowout game 56-6, maybe next weekend when we play tenn it will be at least enjoyable to watch the whole game. But they lost, so maybe they will be fired up to play us, so we will see.

On another note, I don't have my tank set up to hold an octo yet but I want to go looking for them and found a site that told me where a good place to start would be, although if the tide isnt low enough we may have to snorkle but i've had no problems with that. I've never done anything like this but im willing to try and see what I can find, I think it would be pretty rewarding to find a pet like an octo. I'm not going this weekend but maybe next on sunday. I was reseaching where to pick a briareus and from what I've found the best place to find one would be the keys and thats an almost a sure shot to get one but the place I was thinking of is an hour south of cedar key. Anyways, let me know what you think, I think it would be a fun thing to try out some weekend.


Staff member
Dobrzemetal;142261 said:
Hello everybody, I was hoping someone could supply me with some tips or tricks for catching Octopus. I live in Gainesville, FL and . . .Any advice offered would be awesome, thanks for your time.

Go Gators!

I don't know the gulf side well - it is sandy and shallow and the vis is lower. Your are unlikely to find Caribbean Reef Octopuses that far north - they can't take the lower temps the Gulf of Mexico gets to in winter. However, you are in pygmy octopus country - O. vulgaris should be there too. I’ve never gone after them so perhaps someone else can chime in. In the mean time, I would talk to commercial fishers who use traps, crab or lobster traps and see if they get any octopuses.

Even when living in Gainesville, my octopuses came from the Florida Keys. That's where you can get Caribbean Reef Octopuses. O. vulgaris are there as well. It is a longer road trip but the vis is usually much better and the water much warmer and the Key Lime pie infinitely better!

UF class of 1994

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