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bought an octopus, but what kind?

Joined
May 30, 2009
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458
2/3 of the unknown Octopus' labeled "Caribbean Octopus - Octopus vulgaris were sold by the time I got to check them out today.

I bought the last one. He is missing 2 arms but otherwise seems alright. I am dripping him now.

Here are some pics. Any idea what species?

Should be in the tank shortly will try and get some pics and video. Apparently he has ate a hermit crab in the store. I guess tomorrow I will try feeding him. Either frozen food on a stick or I`ll go pick up a crab and while I look at ordering a bunch monday.





 

CaptFish

Colossal Squid
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COOL! it seems like a really young one.


we can rule out vulgaris as the arms are too long.

I'm going guess at O.briareus. but I'm only 75% on that. the arms seem almost too long, and I dont remember the blue around the eye being that large
 
Joined
May 30, 2009
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458
Thanks.

He has a strong grip. I figured after the drip I could just toss him in. As soon as I touched him he grabbed my finger hard! I was surprised! So I opted to put the bucket directly in the tank and just keep tilting it until he crawled out.

He explored about 1/3rd of the tank and is chilling in the rock work now.

Should I wait till he eats live before trying frozen on a stick?
I don't have any live food now but tomorrow I can go pick up something to tide him over until I can order shore shrimp or fiddler crabs on monday. I can probably get a fiddler crab as a pet, it will cost a couple bucks but no big deal.

To octoproof the tank I used 1/4" mesh over the overflow and eggcrate. For the top I am using mesh and for now I just have pieces of wood secured all the way around. The only problem is I have 2 wires from powerheads that slightly lift it. I think it is secure enough but I'd say it's only 98-99% secure not 100%. I guess what should have been done is drill a hole to run the wires out of but it's far too late for that.

I'm going to cut 2x4's to size and place them around the eurobracing. I think that would be heavy enough. I can always double up but at his current size there is no possible way he could lift that.
 

DWhatley

Kraken
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I will go 99% on the briareus call :biggrin2: and double on the youth because of the blue around the eyes. I think a lot of the confusion with vulgaris and briareus is that vulgaris are called the Common Octopus all over the world. The official common name for briareus' is the Caribbean Common Octopus (or CCO) and people take liberties with the one word difference. The word Caribbean is critical, however, as it is an entirely different species and endemic to the Caribbean.

Feeding frozen to one this young might be challenging but certainly try it. With the hatchlings we found they understand fiddlers and crayfish are highly desirable food items even if never exposed (if you are ordering fiddlers from Paul, he has small crays as well but remember that these need to be kept in fresh water. We impale them on a feeding stick so that they don't die in the tank). They also will easily take hermits removed from their shells (mine have not been overly successful with extracting them on their own but will eagerly take them when offered out of the shell). I have been after Paul to try to get us feeding hermits and at one point it looked like he was going to offer them but it seems there are complications. Shore shrimp have been a good offering from the get go if given on a feeding stick or from a pipette (both are a little tricky because of the size) but they are hard for the octos to catch). Briareus seem to have particularly poor eyesight, especially close up so even larger live bait shrimp challenge them.
 
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May 30, 2009
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Thank you for the information.

I'm assuming high 70's is good for temp?

As for the live food. I am thinking about ordering from Paul, I'm going to check around if I can get any wholesale locally as shipping is super expensive. I'll probably just buy 1 or 2 "pet" ones to get him going. If I do order how many do you think I should get 100? More?

How long can fiddler crabs survive under water? Do I have to impale them too or can I let them wander? My biggest problem is I have NO idea where he could be in the tank. I did watch him at first and he did explore a bit but then turned dark and went into the rock.

I could also put some hermit crabs in just in case they cross his path. If I could figure out where he is hanging out I could try some PE mysis. Given his small size this seems like an ideal food if I can find him..
 

DWhatley

Kraken
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High 70's - low 80's seems to work fine.

We did feed PE mysis at first (but they never did take the Hikari), super hard to hand feed with a pipette but we managed. He looks big enough for the shore shrimp though and we tried the Hikari about the time we started giving shore shrimp so it may have been a preference for the fresher food. It is likely a good idea to have in the freezer as backup for an out of food condition though.

Fiddlers have a way to breath underwater (or so I have been told). They do need to surface occassionally but I have had them live weeks in a tank. You can put a couple in the tank and just leave them. I DO disable the large male claw by breaking off the tip of the lower section (just enough so that they can't close the claw and pinch, sometimes they will throw the entire claw when you try to disable it. We offer these to the Mantis but I would advise against just leaving it in the tank).

I usually order 100 AND 20 fiddlers. Once they take frozen regularly, I don't get the shore shrimp. If you should have any leftover shrimp, you can always just release them to the main tank or freeze them for feeding if you should run out of live.

As long as you don't have snails, hermits can be part of an edible clean-up crew that may or may not be consumed. The problem I find with mixing snails and hermits is that the hemits will often kill the snails for their shells. Finding snails with an operculum helps to be able to keep both but is not a guarantee. Some people report octos eating snails but I don't think it happens that often. I have seen mine TRY to eat one or two (and have posted a set of photos where one was "being eaten" and was then later crawling on the glass) but the octos usually give up. I have seen them take the snail shells and use them for doors regardless of if the shells were inhabited or not. At times this can be comical.
 
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May 30, 2009
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Perfect, no chiller, no fans except if the AC busts and summers over anyway...

So here's my report. I found him with a red flashlight. I defrosted some pe mysis and squirted right in his face. He grabbed some for sure and also grabbed the turkey baster but I guess he realized the baster itself was not food. Given that he is in the rockwork I cannot tell if he actually consumed them but it sure looked like he was eating.

Finally I tried putting 1/4 of a regular uncooked grocery store shrimp that is likely stale / freezer burn on the end of a chopstick. I read someone else say they won't eat older frozen food it has to be fresh. These were left over from my cuttlefish and he grabbed it within seconds! Strong grip too. Again I can't confirm if he ate it or not. I can confirm I'll go buy some fresh (frozen) uncooked shrimp tomorrow and throw this old bag away. They're like 4-5$ so no point playing around with old food.

Since it seems like he at least has some interest in frozen I won't rush out to order a bunch of fiddler and shore shrimp. I'm holding out hope I can find a Canadian supplier. I noticed there was someone here more then a year ago posting about getting them cheap in Canada at his store. I've emailed him but unsure if he still exists.

Finally one last fiddler question they are sold as freshwater pets here. Do I need to acclimate them back to marine or just drop them in?
 
Joined
Oct 2, 2009
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I always order my fiddlers from Paul and the price for shipping in normally included in the listing price. This could be different for you as you are in Canada but its worth calling and looking into. There was always one die off but they compensated for that by adding an extra crab. As far as the acclimation goes... I always just drop them in. They can live a good long while surprisingly enough.
 

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