Whats wrong with my octo

Discussion in 'Octopus Care' started by crocgurl93, Aug 16, 2007.

  1. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    :confused: My octo isn't coming out of it's den or eating and I think it's eating its tentacles what do I do or whats wrong? :(
     
  2. Nancy

    Nancy Titanites Staff Member Moderator

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    Why do you think he's eating his arms? This would be serious.

    If so, it could be a disease or it could be a strong stress reaction - what are your water quality parameters and how long has your tank cycled?

    You need to tell us a lot more.

    Same for the ID - we need a lot more information.

    Nancy
     
  3. shipposhack

    shipposhack Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    Your octopus could be starting senescence.

    If it is autophagy (cannibalising himself), that is very bad.
     
  4. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    I'm not sure if he's eating his arms but it looks like it, and I bought the already cycled water is that bad? Also I just got him so could it just be stress that he's not eating? because he was eating at the pet store I gave him a cleaner shrimp and a small snail but it looks like the hermit crab got to the cleaner shrimp because it was already dead but I'm not sure. My mom checked the PH levels and salinity and those were fine, could it be the temperature? it's at room temperature
     
  5. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    Also he hasn't come out of his new found den since I got him which was 3 days ago now I'm just totally stressed
     
  6. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    The water parameters that most commonly cause problems are related to the nitrogen cycle, so you'll need to test more than just the pH and temp to get much help here. Ammonia, nitrate, and nitrite are usually what people test. That also relates to the cycling issue, normally running those is the way to tell if your tank is cycled and stable before you get an octopus. The other test that's useful is for copper, because copper-based medications used on fish often stay in a tank pretty much forever, and they are toxic to octos.

    I've never heard of buying "cycled water" before, but I doubt it's a substitute for cycling your tank properly. The cycling process isn't so much about the tank itself as it is about establishing appropriate colonies of bacteria in places like the live rock, substrate, and filter media, so although putting water from a cycled tank in might provide a some bacterial cultures as a starter, it wouldn't provide a stable system by itself.

    I'm concerned that your tank is just not ready for your octopus, although it's hard to tell that without full test results, particularly on the nitrogen cycle. I'm trying to give a quick, emergency answer here, but the ceph care experts may be able to offer better suggestions.

    Everything you report might be the result of ammonia not being handled because the tank isn't cycled yet, but the only way to tell that for certain is to get the test kits for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate. If nothing else, doing those tests seems like the first thing to rule out.

    If the octopus is in a tank that hasn't been cycled properly, and I'm pretty sure that "cycled water" isn't a substitute, then probably the ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate levels are way off and will be for a long time. Doing emergency water changes might be a quick fix to avoid killing the octopus immediately, but could also prolong the cycling time... unfortunately, during cycling, it's normal for the tank chemistry to go through phases that will be bad, and maybe fatal, to the octopus: that's why we recommend cycling tank completely before getting the octo. Hopefully one of the more experienced octo-keepers will chime in about whether an emergency water change is a good idea or not, since I'm not quite confident on that.

    If I'm wrong, and the nitrogen parameters are not a problem, it's possible that the octopus is just stressed from travel. It's not at all unusual for an octopus that's just been moved into a new tank to want to hide and avoid coming out any time people are around, or lights are on, or it has any reason to be uncomfortable. However, you list a lot of things that the octo would do if it's very stressed from water problems. I worry that if you don't investigate and address the problems, your octo's in serious trouble.

    Getting tests for ammonia, nitrate, and nitrite as soon as possible should be your first priority. If these show that this is the problem, do you have access to any other cycled tanks where you can move it until your tank is cycled? Returning it to the LFS might be a possibility, too.

    good luck

    oh, and :welcome: to TONMO, sorry you didn't find us until there's already a crisis going on.
     
  7. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    Thank you and yes my mom has a fish tank that weighs as much as a car do you think I could put the octopus in a container or something until then? or should I just put some water from my mom fish tank and put it in my tank? because the pet store owner said to do that. I put a towel over the tank so the octopus doesn't have to deal with me walking by my door every 5 minutes. I'll do some tests right away thank you :)
     
  8. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    Also the sand my mom bought already has the bacteria in it but should I just get rid of the water from my tank now and put some from my moms tank in?
     
  9. Animal Mother

    Animal Mother Architeuthis Supporter

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    How long has the tank the octopus is in right now been up and running? If it's less than 2-3 months old you DEFINITELY need to move it or it is VERY likely it will die very soon, REGARDLESS of whatever advice your LFS employee told you. I know lots of live sand packaging advertises it as being a way to immediately cycle your tank, but this is false advertising. It will seed your tank with beneficial bacteria, but it will NOT cycle your tank.

    If you can rule out autophagy (eating its arms) put the octopus in a plastic container, poke holes in the lid (enough for good water flow) and slowly acclimate it into your moms tank. That is, if your moms tank has been up and running for several months. If it is autophagy I don't think there is anything you can do about it, sadly.

    If your octopus is a dwarf, like you think it may be, it is probably just wrapping its arms around its mantle, kinda looks like it's turning itself inside out. I HOPE that's all it is for you and your octopus' sake.
     
  10. Animal Mother

    Animal Mother Architeuthis Supporter

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    That will help short term, but it's not the water that's the main issue. It's the lack of bacteria in your filtration, live rock. Surface areas, not water column.
     
  11. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    OH MY GOODNESS!! thats exactly what it's doing! wow I feel so relieved now but yea I set up my tank like 2 days before I got my octopus so your saying I should put it in my moms tank? Should it be a big container with rocks in it or what? Or do you want me to empty the water out and put my moms water in? And thank you for answering my questions everyone I know theres a lot of them but I'm just so worried right now.
     
  12. shipposhack

    shipposhack Haliphron Atlanticus Registered

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    The best thing for you to do right now is buy a critter keeper (or the like) and put some sand and a couple small rocks in there for the octopus. Then, get the octopus in there (you're excited, I know it), and put it in your mom's tank. You need to acclimate him to the tank though (drip is best). Acclimation can be done before or after he is in the critter keeper. Buying live sand, live rock from someone else's tank, and established water will reduce your cycling time, but your tank should still go through a small cycle. I would NOT empty out your tank. When you do water changes you can use water directly from your mom's tank if you want. As monty said, some octopuses will hide for as long as several weeks, if you have a dwarf he could be eating pods from your rock or filter feeding.
     
  13. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    What would filter feeding look like? Also how long would I need to keep him in her tank?
     
  14. Animal Mother

    Animal Mother Architeuthis Supporter

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    It's speculation at this point, but Dwhatley has a great thread about caring for a Mercatoris mother and her babies. It seems the mother benefitted from being fed filter foods, as it prolonged her life for several weeks after the babies had hatched. Mercatoris show a behavior that appears to be a defensive positioning of their arms, wrapped over their mantle, between their eyes.

    This is now believed to actually be filter feeding, and that their arms are positioned to catch particlutae matter from the water passing over them, instead of being prepared for defense.

    You would need to keep your octopus in your mothers established tank until your tank has completed its cycling period, which is a suggested 3 months. If it is a dwarf, this will likely be the majority, if not all of its life with you as they only live 6-8 months anyway, and no telling how old it is.
     
  15. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    well that sucks I thought they live for like 2 years
     
  16. Animal Mother

    Animal Mother Architeuthis Supporter

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    Nope, the only real downside to keeping them. Medium sized Octopuses can live up to 2 years, but even that's not very common in captivity. Sorry.
     
  17. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    I think he's dieing because he's sitting at the top of the tank and I've tried a lot of stuff to make him move and he's not budging and when I looked at his arm it looks like its decaying he's barely even holding on to the glass...
     
  18. clownfish

    clownfish Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    poor little fella
     
  19. crocgurl93

    crocgurl93 Blue Ring Registered

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    yea hes dead :( this sucks...
     
  20. Animal Mother

    Animal Mother Architeuthis Supporter

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    Sorry.

    I don't mean to sound insensitive, but please research to the fullest before making any impulse puchase when it comes to any animal, Octopus or not. It will make for a much happier experience.

    Again, I'm really really sorry.
     

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