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Complete newbie requesting help with first octopus setup!

Be skeptical about the ability of the people at the animal shop, or the suppliers, to correctly identify an octopus. Just be aware that, at least in the U.S. they are often wrong. Try to get them to send you some good detailed pictures, and we can help verify the species. It would be nice if we also had a description of the mantle size.

I thought I read that "Macropus" referred to a category of species. Do enough home work to see if that is true, and if the different species are different in any significant ways.

While some species try to escape much more than others, I think that you need to make your tank escape proof for any species of octopus, simply because if they do "escape" they'll probably die. How do you plan to make your overflow escape proof? I have an acrylic wall around mine, with 3mm vertical slits, about 25mm long, cut at the top. The slits are about 3mm apart, and reach all the way to the underside of the top. I can only keep an octopus that is so large that it can't get through a 3mm x 25mm hole.
Joe-Ceph pretty much covered anything I thought of. The complex is quite large in individual species. The aquarium supply here is typically from Indonesia through one vendor and never identified as Macropus (just as an Indonesian octopus). It is likely worth the adventure (glad you went on your holiday) if it the LFS is not too far away to go see it if you can just to take photos and "train" for the purchase and id adventure when your funds are adequate. At the moment, you still have the top and food in addition to the octo to consider financially but I agree with CaptFish that your tank is likely ready.
Ok, this shipment is coming from Bali I'm told. I don't trust them to be able to identify it but apparently it is 15-30 days until they get it and they would only order it for me, so I can't see any pictures in advance :frown:

As to the money, turns out an octopus is much cheaper than I expected so that's no longer a problem.

Then I guess I mostly just need to figure out how to octo-proof the tank. The tank has two glass lids which fit together next to each other (covering half the tank each). They have small triangular cuts in the corners for the return pipe to go through. The overflow box you have seen - is it sufficient to put pantyhose or something like that material over the outtake holes? How do I secure it?

Do I need to put something over the powerheads too?
Welcome to the octopus species crap shoot :biggrin2:

It is risky to not to cover the exit holes even though they are in a box but you have to be careful with putting anything over the overflow holes or you will flood your tank and netting or panty hose have too fine a mesh (remember, you want the dirt to flow out of the tank). If you can find a very course sponge (very large holes) that will fit in the box that will work but you must monitor it to be sure the water level is not rising and you must keep them clean (we could not use sponges in ours because it slowed down the water flow too much). You can look for a screen designed for your bulkheads (it is not really a screen but is called that or a strainer here). It looks like the piece that fits the intake end of most pumps . Before we found that these were commercially available, I used parts from old pumps. Keep in mind that it cannot be longer than your overflow is wide (front to back).

I only use one particular kind of water movement pump that has had good success with octos (Koralia by Hydor) and don't cover it (others enclose these as well). Normal powerheads, however, need the intake screened as serious injury is almost guaranteed. Here again, a course sponge us often used to limit access but hopefully others will chime in with successful methods since I don't use this kind of power head.

Your glass tops, assuming they cover all open space in the tank, including the overflow, should be adequate for an aculeatus or a macropus similar to Beldar or Puddles. For a larger animal, you will need to add weights to prevent the animal from lifting the lid. If the holes are larger than the eye (it is actually the beak that limits their escape hole size but the beak is about eye size) then you will need to tape or otherwise plug the holes. Most likely you will not have to do anything but remember to always replace the lids properly after cleaning and feeding. How do you remove them now? Do they have handles of some sort? If not and you have been leaving them off, you will want to attach some form of handle or removal will be extremely difficult. A photo with the lid on would be helpful to be sure that my envisionment matches reality though.
All I can add is that an octopus is much stronger than you would think, for an animal that size, so assume that they will push, pull, and try to remove anything you use cover things. Don't just "put" strainers over intakes, but secure them there such that a determined three year old (without tools) would not be able to remove them.
I am alive!

I'm so, SO sorry for not writing. It's been a troubling time, and I haven't had much motivation to write. But I am still here, I'm still happy with my aquarium, there's lots to report and I keep meaning to update you guys, so I'll write a full update later, but for the meantime...


I'll start a thread in the 'our octopuses' forum in a moment.
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