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algae control options in an octopus tank


Pygmy Octopus
Sep 17, 2004
hello all, my name is Karl, and though this isnt my first time to the site, it is my first time posting, and I would like to thank you all for the great information I have obtained from you. now my question is : can an algae grazing nudibranch be kept with a bimac., and if not which Iam figuring is probably the answer, what critters might be a possibility for algae control, more specifically microalgae, any suggestion would be greatly appreciated, Thank You
Hi and welcome to TONMO.com!

Most of us use snails for algae control. Your octo may eat some at first, but seems to lose interest later onl Hermit crabs also eat some algae (and clean the snails' shells), but they will be eaten when the octo is small. Later on, hermits are too small for your octo to bother with.

Ok well I feel a little dumb now, I had just figured that the usual clean up crue would be food, but that does make sence, thank you so much Nancy, and thank you for your care articles as well, I have kept 2 octo's before, though its been awile, but at the time care information was slim, I had no clue what species I had, and I kept them in a via aqua 10 gallon, (not at the same time), the first only lasted about 2 months, the 2nd I did keep well for about 8 months. This time I will be ordering from octopets, and I have just set the tank up, I am running a biomatrix protien skimmer bio filter combo, and a wet/dry filter, with 20lbs of live rock and a pair of damsels to keep the bio load up, but being that this is a 30 gallon, and not a ten with very little live rock, algae control was a concern of mine. also I would like to now what the best food would be for my baby bimac at the size that I would be getting from octopets? of cource after the tank is very well cycled and stabalized. thank you again
Hi armourk,

I'm glad that our Ceph Care site has been helpful to you! By the way, keeping an octo for 8 months is good!

Octopets sells baby clams and amphipods. They raise their baby octos on these, and I believe also some very small crabs. I would buy both clams and amphipods to start with, when you get your octo.

I would want one at least two months old, one that had already taken some frozen food. I think it would have a better chance of survival, being a bit older. But people seem to be successfully raising them from the tender age of one month.

Younger than three months, they need to eat several times a day. Having amphipods in the tank will help. You could add small hermit crabs and when your little one is ready, it will have a good snack.

Be sure to find out how old you baby bimac is when you order it!

One request - when your tank is stable, please enter it into the OctoDB (click on the button above) and also your octo, when it arrives.

I use caulerpa in my tank to help with algae problems. It seems to absorb much of the nutrients troublesome algae feeds on. It also has helped to keep the nitrates low in my tank. I am not sure how my octo will like the nice green forest in his tank. I guess I shall see on Tuesday!

Donnie Darko
Beware adding snails and hermits very early. I can't confirm what nancy says about them when the octos become larger (I don't doubt her knowledge, just can't vouch..), but I do know that I added 5 very large mud whelks (snails) initially to my tank, and within 48 hours my bimac had eaten them all. Pretty much anything I add to the tank as far as hermits or snails (even very large blue legged hermits are a small snack) get devoured. He's only about a month old since I got him (so about 3 months+), but I wouldn't count on him leaving these things alone for quite some time to come.
Well, they're a good food source if they get eaten. Eventually it will stop. Also, my experience was that if you put in four or five snails, not all will be eaten. And bimacs soon get too large to be interested in small hermits.

Also, some snails seem more difficult for the octo to drill and eat, like the snail sold here as the "Mexican Turbo Snail".

thank you all, youve been a big help, I got some small hermits of various species, and will get some mexican turbo's here in the next couple of days, hey at least they will keep the tank clean until it cycles and I get my octo. and they will give my octo something to do for a little while

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