Very interested in leaarning!


May 2, 2012
Hello my name is Trevor, and Im very excited to get an octopus tank started (even though this is my first time in the salt water world). My significant other, Rachel, and I have decided to endeavor into the salt water aquarium world as our first hobby together, and we couldnt be more excited! Our first aquarium will be either a 24, or 28 gallon nanocube that we are buying second hand. We were wanted to start by growing corals and the like with a few damsels and clownfish, just to start learning. later down the road i would love to put either a dwarf (pigmy) octopus, or dwarf cuddlefish as our goal pet! We would love any pointers that could be thrown our way as far as best (smaller, i.e. 4" body or less) species that would be a great experience. I have done a moderate ammount of research on salt water aquariums and have found a privatly owned specialty pet store with an owner who seems very much to care not only of our knowledge base (and is helping us to make the best decisions), and who cares very much about the care of the animals he is selling! We are very excited as I have said.
Rachel and I currently reside in Cleveland Ohio, and live in a very small appartment with my German shepherd "Shadow" but are currently looking to move to a bigger house for rent we have just recently found. In my research I have seen a common consistancy in almost all forums; Octopi are hard to come by. That fact has given me the goal of starting octopus husbandry to help change the limited availablility and general lack of knowledge base for these creatures, they are so fascinating!.
SO! since we are going to start our first cycle or two with just raising corals and fish, we were wondering what would be the best choice to help us get ready for our cepholapod tank? and what would the recommended tanks size be for smaller (hopefully) more manangable species? Also since we have heard that octopods kind-of plow over things in their path what kind of corals do you recommend raising?
Thank you so much for reading and we are looking forward to the advice. Sorry for the large ammound of info and kind-of "scatterbraindness" (new word?) but there is a lot of information that needs to go both ways as we do not want to mistreat or hurt any animals (even the coral!) Thank you again for reading this ginormous post and we cant wait to hear from you!

Rachel, and Trevor :read:


Certified Ceph Head For Life
Staff member
Sep 4, 2006
Gainesville, GA
:welcome: Rachel and Trevor!

The nano is a good idea to start the hobby but one of the terms you will learn in marine tank keeping is "species only". Many animals cannot be kept with any other animals and octopuses are one of them. So, none of the fish or corals that you will start with will be suitable companions for an octopus (there are a few exceptions that are mostly clean-up crew and very low sting polyps). Cuttlefish can live with mildly aggressive corals but the tank you are considering is a bit small for even a single bandensis and definitely too small if you want to try to breed them.

If there is room and you have not purchased your tank, you may want to look for something closer to 50 gallons. The larger water volume will give you an edge for mistakes as you learn and is more suitable for cuttles as well as a larger range of octopuses (keeping in mind that if you want corals there are only a very few that are octo safe and I suspect you will decide to start with cuttles). You will want to stay with a tank that has been used as a reef tank or be very, very sure that the prior owners never treated fish with copper (frequently used to treat ich in both fresh and saltwater fish). Copper can remain in the silicone and slowly leach back into the aquarium, killing corals and especially cephalopods. Tanks that have only been used as reef tanks (no fish) are a much safer bet that no copper has ever been used.

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