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Actually 2 persons

Akyu

GPO
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Mar 14, 2006
Messages
114
Hi there,

Akyu is actually my partner and I. We posted about Ossie, our mercatoris the other day, but haven't properly introduced ourselves to you all.

I'm Sharon and my partner is Westina. On a lark, we decided to purchase an octopus and now we're finding our lives revolving around Ossie. We are very new to this, with me having absolutely no experience with aquariums and her having experience with only freshwater tanks.

I think from now on, we will never NOT have a tank running in our house. We are seriously hooked.

We bought Ossie from the Octopus Garden in Berkeley. According to the owner, Ossie is an O. Mercatoris. He recommended that we get a 5.5 gal tank with lots of live rock with only a water pump. In addition, we got 15 hermit crabs for Ossie.

The next day, we went out, got a small tank and purchased ghost shrimp for Ossie.

It's been 5 days and though we were fortunate enough to witness Ossie hunting the first day (read my partner's post on Alkalinity levels), she's been pretty much hidden in her den rock whenever the lights are on.

We're taking the suggestions for a larger tank to heart and will be purchasing a new tank this weekend - we don't have a stand for the 48 gal yet and she's so tiny that I think we'll never find her again if we put her into the 48 gal. one. We are thinking of a 10-15 gal. tank for her new home.

One thing I'm puzzled over - the 15 hermit crabs were hyper active the first two nights and the last two nights, they've been really sluggish. I put some fish flakes in and that seemed to stir them up for a little while. What could be causing this? We seem to have an inordinate amount of bristle worms, could they be getting to the crabs some how? Or are they just frightened at being in there with Ossie?

For our small 5.5 gal, we only got a pump for the tank and not a filter or anything and we're using snails to help with algae. What else besides a protein skimmer and a filter should we get for the new home?

Any suggestions would be welcome. Sometime this weekend, we'll post pix of the home and if we're REALLY lucky, perhaps one of Ossie as well.

Oh, and keep up stories about your pets... both Westina and I have been loving reading up about them.

Sharon
 

OB

Colossal Squid
Staff member
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Oct 19, 2003
Messages
3,101
:welcome:

Not the person to help you out on this, but it is great to see someone really getting into the hobby with a passion. I would say you won't be able to get along too long with your somewhat minimal set-up, as octopus are really finicky about their water, so a proper filter and skimmer seem more than in order. I'll leave it to the experts, 'though :wink:
 

Akyu

GPO
Registered
Joined
Mar 14, 2006
Messages
114
hey,

Westina here, I'm glad Sharon took the time to introduce us. I have just been enthralled with Ossie! Last night we bought a red light for the tank, to see if she'd come out and I could get a pic of her. She didn't come out until I turned the light off, and even when she was already out and I'd turn the light back on, she'd hurry back to her rock, and hide away until I turned the light off.

From the small amount of time I saw her last night, she seems to have gotten a little bigger. I didn't get good a really good view of her, but from what I did see, I am pretty sure she got bigger. She quickly blended in with the rocks she was on, and seemed to be aware of what was going on around her. I think she could see the red light though.

Tomorrow we are going to buy a 15-20gal tank with skimmer, filter and all, and have that run for a few days before we transfer her into it. I'm guessing by Monday she'll be in her new home. We figured we'd move her den rock into the new tank when we make the transition to give her some familiarity.

I'm hoping to get pics of our current tank and maybe of her up tonight.

As Sharon said we don't have a stand for the 50gal tank yet, and are debating about getting a custom built stand for it.

Anyway, I just wanted to let everyone know that she appears to be doing well. Thanks for all your advice. Hopefully we'll get a picture of her up tonight!

-Westina
 

monty

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Mar 8, 2004
Messages
4,884
Akyu said:
hey,

Westina here, I'm glad Sharon took the time to introduce us. I have just been enthralled with Ossie! Last night we bought a red light for the tank, to see if she'd come out and I could get a pic of her. She didn't come out until I turned the light off, and even when she was already out and I'd turn the light back on, she'd hurry back to her rock, and hide away until I turned the light off.

From the small amount of time I saw her last night, she seems to have gotten a little bigger. I didn't get good a really good view of her, but from what I did see, I am pretty sure she got bigger. She quickly blended in with the rocks she was on, and seemed to be aware of what was going on around her. I think she could see the red light though.

Tomorrow we are going to buy a 15-20gal tank with skimmer, filter and all, and have that run for a few days before we transfer her into it. I'm guessing by Monday she'll be in her new home. We figured we'd move her den rock into the new tank when we make the transition to give her some familiarity.

I'm hoping to get pics of our current tank and maybe of her up tonight.

As Sharon said we don't have a stand for the 50gal tank yet, and are debating about getting a custom built stand for it.

Anyway, I just wanted to let everyone know that she appears to be doing well. Thanks for all your advice. Hopefully we'll get a picture of her up tonight!

-Westina


:welcome: Weird about the red light-- what kind of light is it? If it's a white light with a red filter, maybe enough of the non-red spectrum is getting through? I'm pretty sure octos in general can't see down at the part of the spectrum where monochromatic red LEDs are, but maybe it varies somewhat from species to species.

One thing I've read around here (although the "Tank Talk" experts are far more qualified to discuss this than I am) is that cephs are particularly sensitive to fluctuations if the tank hasn't cycled for a long time (weeks or months), so you may want to ask about the best strategy before moving Ossie after only having the new tank for a few days. Of course, it's a tradeoff-- in a small tank like she's in now, there's not much water to act as a buffer if anything goes wrong... I remember some threads about strategies for speeding up cycling and how to tell if a tank is stable enough to be safe, you may want to search the forums a bit about this, or see what the experts say...
 

cthulhu77

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Mar 15, 2003
Messages
6,638
:welcome:

This whole affair seems rather "rushed", don't you think? After all, most tanks will need several months of acclimation, and a fifteen gallon is hardly room enough for even the smallest of octopus...I would heavily recommend the 50, whether you obtain a custom stand or not.

:smile: greg
 
Joined
Sep 16, 2005
Messages
4,936
:welcome: to both of you. Given the fact that you have only had the 5.5 gallon set up for about a week (am I correct about that???), I would still move Ossie to a bigger uncycled tank. At least the water volume will even out some of the chemical cycles that are going to happen. Good luck, also I wouldn't listen to the LFS people anymore, they are not giving you good advice.
 

Nancy

Titanites
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Nov 20, 2002
Messages
5,772
Hi and welcome to TONMO.com :welcome:

I know your hearts are in the right place, but the aquarium store you bought your little octopus from didn't give you good advice. You do need a larger aquarium and you do need good filtration and a protein skimmer. Unfortunately, tanks need to go through a cyclying process which takes several months after they are set up.

Did the person in the aquarium store also tell you that you need to test the salt water for specific gravity (or salinity), pH, nitrites, nitrates and ammonia?

There are articles that give you much needed information (click on articles, then Ceph Care above).

Perhaps the best thing would be daily water changes to try to keep the water parameters in line - maybe 20%. Are there other suggestions from the rest of you experienced octo (and aquarium) keepers?

We recommend a 30 gallon for mercatoris, but it can be kept in a 20 gallon.

Nancy
 

Akyu

GPO
Registered
Joined
Mar 14, 2006
Messages
114
Thanks for all the advice folks. We contacted the nearby professor who does research on octopus, esp. pygmy ones and are getting help from him as well.

Will keep you updated and hopefully soon, we can post some pictures of Ossie.
 

monty

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Akyu said:
Thanks for all the advice folks. We contacted the nearby professor who does research on octopus, esp. pygmy ones and are getting help from him as well.

Is that Neogonodactylus (Roy Caldwell)? He and Mucktopus are at UCB... Just curious.
 

Akyu

GPO
Registered
Joined
Mar 14, 2006
Messages
114
Hi,

Westina here again. to answer monty, yes Prof. Caldwell and Prof. Meyers (not of UCB) were the people we asked.

The red light, I think is a white light with red glass. Our LFS didn't have any moonglo lights.

I got to see Ossie today, she seems to be doing fine.

We did a 20% water change this morning, and bought a test kit for all the things you mentioned Nancy.

We tested them this evening.

temp. - 70F
ph - 8.0
alk - high
ammonia - 0.25
NO2 - 0.1
NO3 - 2.5
 

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