What a Hitch Hiker!!!

FL Knifemaker

Cuttlefish
Registered
#1
I'm really glad I found this forum!!

I never expected this. I just added some new LR to my tank and guess what was inside??? This is kind of like having a baby left on my doorstep :)

Needless to say, I've been reading, studying and and trying to give myself a crash course on Octo care!!

My tank is quite stable after being started and cycled with local LR. It's been up and running for 3 mos., after being basically started from another well established tank. Other critters include a Domino, blue damsel and a black capped basslet. Clean up crew consists of several big snails, turbo snails and 6 small hermits. I also have quite a few corals and sponges that also came with the LR. I feed frozen brine shrimp, live brine shrimp, flakes and occasionally finely diced clams.

So far, I've only seen him when I put the new LR 3 days ago. His body?? is aprox. the size of a quarter. Last night, I saw him move from one piece of LR to another. So far, he's hiding and hasn't come out on his own at all. I'm sure he needs to eat ASAP.

ANY information regarding feeding, care and coaxing him out to eat would be GREATLY appreciated!! I will do all I can to keep him healthy including setting up and transferring him to a separate tank.

TIA!!
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
#5
If his body is the size of a quarter, he's probabaly already a couple of months old - unless he's a pygmy octo.

He would still eat amphipods, small crabs (hermit crabs, small fiddlers). You might try offering a piece of shrimp (preferably fresh, but thawed and frozen might be accepted). The clams may be too big for him, try a little piece of clam.

Do you live near St. Augustine? Here's a good place for getting food -
http://www.aquaculturestore.com/products.html.

Nancy
 

FL Knifemaker

Cuttlefish
Registered
#6
Thanks for the link Nancy. I'm in Lakeland, not very close to St. Aug. I ended up with an assortment of small shrimp clams and a few very small crabs to try. I'll try putting some clam pieces in where I believe he's hiding. This little guy has already cost me about days worth of work, he better eat something :)

I will also contact the aqua culture store tomorrow as well. I need invert food as well!
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
#7
I've had very good results with their shipping. They send by priority mail which is much cheaper than other ways of shipping. Even though I'm over here in Dallas, I got my shipments very quickly. I was a good customer for fiddler crabs and shore shrimp.

Hope your little guy eats. Must be hungry by now.

Where did your live rock come from? (Florida, Fiji, etc?)

Nancy
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
#9
So does that mean it comes from Florida? - it would be good if we knew for sure, for identifying your little octopus. A good aquarium store probably has live rock from several sources. Can you verify that it's from Florida?

Nancy
 

cthulhu77

Titanites
Supporter
#10
whooo boy...I hope not!!! I don't think you can collect live rock in FL...(I may be wrong though...but after all of the storms, you would think the reefs might need some time to heal)
Most of the rock importing over here is Sri Lankan or Fiji...some Solomon island stuff too...any chance of a pic?
greg
 

know-it-all

O. vulgaris
Registered
#11
TBS has there own auqucultured reef.
They dumped a load of rocks into the gulf,
and I'm fairly sure they pick rock 6 out of 7 days a week.
I don't think they need to wait to long after all the hurricanes
came thru to start collecting again.

So, there is a good chance the hitchhicker came from the Gulf of Mexico
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
#13
I've had dealers tell me that almost all live rock is aquacultured now. Live rock from Florida is for sure. It has a reputation for lots of hitchhikers (including mantis shrimp).

Nancy
 

FL Knifemaker

Cuttlefish
Registered
#15
Nancy said:
I've had dealers tell me that almost all live rock is aquacultured now. Live rock from Florida is for sure. It has a reputation for lots of hitchhikers (including mantis shrimp).

Nancy
WOW! Everyone posted at once!!! Yes, awesome LR, many hitch hikers, most good some bad!!!

The pieces I picked up on tuesday had about 6 different types of sponges. Several anemones, and 4-5 clams (attached). Critters included, so far, 3 crabs, several snails and some tiny shrip. AND ONE LITTLE OCTOPUS!!!
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
#16
I just looked at the TBS site. I'd heard of this place before, but it is expensive when you have to have it shipped. Lucky that you live near enough to visit!

Nice looking piece of live rockyou picked out.

I sent TBS an email and asked which species of octo they commonly find on their rock.

Since you've added the live rock, watch the ammonia levels. Octos are very sensitive to ammonia. Do water changes when ammonia starts to rise and bring it back down to as near 0 as you can.

Nancy
 

FL Knifemaker

Cuttlefish
Registered
#17
Nancy,

That wasn't the pic I thought it was. I have more on my laptop, I'll post tomorrow. That picture is just one part of the rock with a strange looking sponge on it! I was planning on asking them about my 8 legged hitchhiker on saturday or monday when I go back over there. They are very busy, sometimes it's hard to even get them on the phone. Living close to them, 50 minutes, is nice!!

I've noticed only a very small rise in my amonia and have been keeping on top of it. Most people I know that use TBS liverock experience very little, if any cycle when starting a new tank.

Thanks again for you help.
 

FL Knifemaker

Cuttlefish
Registered
#20
Thanks for the welcomes!! Again, very nice and informative site!

At this point, I'm considering pulling out the two or three pieces of LR that I believe he's hiding it. This is not going to be easy. It will be 4 days this aftenoon since he's been in my tank. I dont believe he's eaten anything. I would like to find him and transfer him to a friends refuge until I know he's eating and doing OK. Not to sound cold but I don't want him to die where I CANT find or retrieve him!! :(
 

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