Tropical Octopus

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by Spring, Jan 27, 2004.

  1. Spring

    Spring O. vulgaris Registered

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    Of the tropical species of Octopi, which one is considered to be the best suited for aquarium life? I would like to have a bimac but I'm concerned about heat issues in the summer. Are there any of the tropicals that are captive bred?

    Spring
     
  2. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    Hi Spring,

    You're right to be looking at the heat issue with a bimac. I was able to keep a bimac with the central air conditioning set at 70 or below, and with a fan blowing on the sump. The water stayed at about 72 degrees. I'm researching bimac water temperature and will have more to report later.

    I know of no captive bred tropical octopuses, all would be wild caught. One of our members is ordering a briareus right now through her LFS, watch the Journals and Photos Forum to see how that turns out.

    My LFS has had nice looking little octos, vulgaris I suspect, but they need a very large tank. I don't know what you have available locally.

    Nancy
     
  3. joel_ang

    joel_ang Architeuthis Registered

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    I know these ain't cheap but a chiller would most certainly help. The fan method is a cost effective method and I would use that but you would have to add in freshwater quite often.
     
  4. Spring

    Spring O. vulgaris Registered

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    Thanks, Nancy and Joel. A chiller is exactly what I'm trying to avoid having to purchase. I know they make some smaller ones that can cool off a tank 4-6 degrees for less than $300. But if I had to get one, I think I'd go ahead and get one of the big ones, as I doubt the cheaper ones actually work as well as they advertise. I have air conditioning, but it is a little inadequate on the hottest summer days. I use fans in the summer on my reef tanks which seems to keep the heat under control, but the tanks still can reach 80-82 degrees. Of course an octo tank wouldn't have the high output lighting contributing to the heat. Neither would it have all the powerheads that add to the higher temps. I suppose I could float frozen bottles of ro water if the temp got too high. But that isn't an ideal situation to be in. I could move the tank to a cooler part of the house, but I like having my tanks were I can see them the most. Which unfortunately, is the 2 warmest rooms in the house.

    Thanks again,
    Spring
     
  5. joel_ang

    joel_ang Architeuthis Registered

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  6. Spring

    Spring O. vulgaris Registered

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    Seems like a lot of good ideas floating around on the cooling issue. :)
    I went ahead and ordered a baby bimac from fishsupply.com today. It should be here tomorrow. I'll deal with the overheating issue when and if it happens. I'm rearranging a few rocks in the tank tonight, removing the ones with aptasia. Are there any other threats I should look for? What about powerhead intakes? Are they strong enough to stay out of the current? I have a bakpak skimmer on this tank and the return line has a 2" pipe in the tank which leads to a open section of the skimmer. Should I try to put a screen or something around that opening to prevent escape? Are the babies prone to escaping or is this something that develops as they age? Do octopi like to have a lot of water movement or should it be light, as with seahorses.

    Spring
     
  7. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    You need to cover all openings in one way or another - sponge, netting, etc. Definitely cover that pipe you mentioned. I used netting with a strong rubber band. The little octo may not be trying to escape - it may be just curious.

    This will be a very small octopus. Do you have a lot of amphipods? Your ocotpus would appreciate them as food.

    You want current and water movement, but not too strong. I have a powerhead and the return from my overflow providing the water curent.

    You might want to click on Ceph Care above, which will take you to the articles and review the Equipment List (which contains more than equipment) and the Checklist.

    Nancy
     
  8. Spring

    Spring O. vulgaris Registered

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    Nancy, The pod population in the tank is limited. I thought I'd go to the fish market tomorrow and see if they have fresh clams and maybe something else I could cut up small enough for it to eat. Will they take enriched frozen mysis when they are small? Or should I try to get live food. Any advice will be appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Spring
     
  9. Burstsovenergy24

    Burstsovenergy24 Larger Pacific Striped Octopus Supporter

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    Live food would probably be the best for now. :)
     
  10. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    I think live food would be best, if you can find it. Octopets sells baby clams and amphipods - however, they also feed their baby octos very tiny crabs, which they apparently don't sell The NRCC uses live mysid shrimp, which is available if you live near the ocean or are willing to mail order.

    You might try small pieces of fresh scallop or mussel and (thawed out) frozen shrimp.

    Nancy
     
  11. joel_ang

    joel_ang Architeuthis Registered

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    Great news spring! I'll be looking forward to some nice pics :heee:

    But for now you could try getting pods from octopets.com or floridaaquafarms.com
     
  12. Spring

    Spring O. vulgaris Registered

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    Ok, I do have ghost/glass shrimp on hand, some are less than a 1/2 inch. I gutload these with cyclop-eeze before feeding my seahorses. I also have some hawaian red volcano shrimp live, that I feed my horses which came from ocean rider(seahorse farm). I have removed most of the snails from the tank but there are a few bumblebee's and astreas left. Any chance it will eat them? I could also get tiny blue leg and halloween crabs at my local reef shop that are less than a 1/2 inch in size for a buck a piece if it won't eat any of the other stuff I mentioned. Feeding this baby is going to be somewhat different than feeding an adult, everything is gonna have to be tiny!

    I'm so excited! I am a bit worried though. I read a post about a baby octo that arrived dead in a bag of inked water. I sure hope this is the exception and not the norm. Fed Ex doesn't arrive in my neighborhood until mid afternoon, so my stomach will stay "knotted up" until then. I guess the good thing is that you don't have to worry as much about them getting cold in shipping since they're sub-tropical. My last mail order was a couple captive bred tropical seahorses shipped from Hawaii. They were 2 days in transit and while there were 2 heat packs in with them, they were still really cold when they got here. They did survive though, and are happy, healthy and growing like weeds now!

    I've got a few more questions about habitat and intellectual stimulation, but I'll start a new post about that. Thanks so much for your advice.

    Spring
     
  13. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    Most people have had good success with having their baby octos shipped to them. You can usually pay a little extra and get a "before 10:00 am delivery", which helps both you and your new octo.

    Nancy
     
  14. Spring

    Spring O. vulgaris Registered

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    Thanks Nancy, I didn't even think about asking for "by 10:00am" shipping. Probably should have. We're having the coldest day we've had all winter, today. (8 degrees at 11am) If it's left sitting in a crate of boxes outside for a while it's bound to get cold fast. Possibly too cold.
    Are there any extra precautions I should take acclimating it, if it is showing signs of stress? Speaking of stress, what are the signs of stress in an octopus? What is the normal respiration rate of an octo?

    Thanks,
    Spring
     
  15. Spring

    Spring O. vulgaris Registered

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    :bugout: My new baby is here and I think it's dead! I am acclimating it as we speak but the water in the bag is a dark charcoal color, and I see no signs of life. I think it inked. Should I speed up the acclimation process in order to get it out of the inked water quicker?

    Spring
     
  16. Spring

    Spring O. vulgaris Registered

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    I may have paniced too soon. It is still alive, breathing very heavily. I released it a few minutes ago and it swam down and is sitting on a rock. I have all the lights off in the room and tank also. There is a little light coming through the drapes, but not much. Poor little baby, is there anything else I should do to help, perhaps xtra airation?

    Spring
     
  17. Colin

    Colin Colossal Squid Supporter

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    just leave it alone for the rest of the day to settle down... putting in extra air will help and make sure the temperature isnt too high.

    which company did you buy from>?

    good luck
     
  18. Spring

    Spring O. vulgaris Registered

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    Hi Colin, I got it from Petsupply.com. I called them and they pretty much said the same thing you did. The baby has retreated into the rocks for now. I'm still really concerned as it was really breathing heavily when I last saw it. The temp is 74 degrees, I don't know what that is in celsius. I took the 50 watt heater out this morning as I had it on the lowest setting and saw it kick on. The room temp is around 70. I tested the water last night, sg 1.025, 0 ammo, 0 nitrites, nitrate around 40 which is higher than I'd like. I also tested for copper and phosphate, 0 on both of those. I'll leave the little booger alone for the rest of the day, but should I offer it food this evening? There are a few snails left in the tank and I saw a small blue leg hermit in there too. Maybe it'll help itself to some crab legs!

    Spring
     
  19. Colin

    Colin Colossal Squid Supporter

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    yeah, id leave it be and if it wants to eat mr hermit well, thats its choice :)


    dont worry about 40ppm too much... after a week or two do some w/changes
     
  20. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    Spring, extra aeration never hurts - makes it easier for them to breathe.

    Nancy
     

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