• Looking to buy a cephalopod? Check out Tomh's Cephs Forum, and this post in particular shares important info about our policies as it relates to responsible ceph-keeping.

cuttlefish or octo


Pygmy Octopus
Jul 29, 2003
Hi everybody,
I m Selim from Turkey.
I want to keep cuttlefish or octo in my 65 gal
65 gal looks ok for a small cuttlefish or octo i think but i also want to keep fish and corals. I know an octo or a cuttlefish wont be ok in a reef ful of corals and small fish and big tangs but my reef will be a little different.
I m planning that the sand will be from Turkish seas. We have that sand it is very very very tiny, colour is cream-white. Sometimes when i swim i see cuttlefish in that sand. I will use that sand. I m planing all the LRs at the same place, so there will be LR hill at the middle of the tank but not too much and this LR hill will be covered by mushrooms, polyps ,some not stinging corals and gorgonians. Also in the place where i dive, everywhere full of this sand and at some places there are long plants, cuttlefish hide in this plants in the morning and in the night they come out. So i m planning to put them to a corner of the tank.
What i worry about is fish. As fish i want a marine betta, an angel, a copperband and a frogfish. Actually no problem with betta, angel and copperband. I dont think they will harras cuttle or cuttle will eat them but i worry about frogfish.
Frogfish is about 4" and frogfishs are able to eat everything which is smaller then 5". so the cuttle should be bigger then 5". But can a cuttlefish which is 5" eat a 4" fish?

And last question, what kind of cuttlefish stays at 5"? I was thinking ROSSIA MACROSOMA but they get 3". Do anybody knows how big bandensis get? if i cant find any cuttle which is 5" or have a problem with frogfish then maybe i can buy a scorpionfish instead of frogfish

Take Care
Selim Özadar :notworth:
Hi Selim, welcome!

Will you get your cuttlefish right from the ocean? Let us know how that goes!

I'm sure someone here with experience can answer your questions about tankmates, etc.

Good luck! :smile:
Hi and :welcome to Tonmo

The size of the tankmates will matter as cuttlefish will eat fish about their size and octos will most certainly try.

It depends on what species of cuttle or octo you are getting, smaller cuttle fish and octopus will be preyed apon, however, the larger ones will eat frogfish if they can spot it.

Sp.bandensis grow up to about 3-4 inches long (mantle length). And again it depends on what species of lionfish you get. Peacock Lionfish (pterois volitans sp?) can grow to be pretty large.
Ancistroteuthis lichtensteini 30.0 Max. ML
Argonauta argo 30.0 Max. ML
Brachioteuthis riisei 4.0 Max. ML
Eledone moschata 14.0 Max. ML
Illex coindetii 37.0 Max. ML
Loligo (Alloteuthis) subulata 20.0 Max. ML
Loligo (Loligo) vulgaris vulgaris 64.0 Max. ML
Loligo forbesii View Range 90.0 Max. ML
Octopus (Octopus) defilippi 9.0 Max. ML
Octopus (Octopus) macropus 14.0 Max. ML
Octopus (Octopus) vulgaris 1200.0 TL Max. TL
Pteroctopus tetracirrhus 13.0 Max. ML
Rondeletiola minor 4.0 Max. ML
Rossia macrosoma 8.0 Max. ML
(Sepia (Rhombosepion) elegans 9.0 Max. ML
Sepia (Rhombosepion) orbignyana 12.0 Max. ML
Sepia (Sepia) officinalis 45.0 Max. ML
Sepietta oweniana 4.0 Max. ML
Sepiola rondeleti 6.0 Max. ML
Sthenoteuthis pteropus 40.0 Max. ML
Todarodes sagittatus 75.0 Max. ML
Todaropsis eblanae 27.0 Max. ML

Here is a list of cephs from around your area with their lengths beside them. :wink:
Hi ozadars

Joel has given you some good info :smile:

I think that you should go with a local species as importing bandedsis have so many problems, also, especially for a firt ceph tank, i think that you should avoid fish altogether in your tank, it is very tricky.

In a 65g tank a Sepia officinalis will get to about 8 - 10 inches total length

If you choose an octo then you will have problems with your choice of decor as the octo will rearrange all your hard work, especially the polyps and gorgonians!!! And not in a way you like it :smile:

Frog fish is a definite no for cephs!

hope this helps
First,thanx for replies.

Joel, i am not going to put a lionfish and thanx for the list. It will halp so much.

Colin, i think Sepia officinalis is very big for my tank and will eat my fish.
As cuttlefish, the common small ones are Sepia elegans, Sepia orbignyana and Rossia macrosoma. I think i will select one of these.

I will probobly buy a scorpionfish, instead of frogfish.

I have few questions;

-What happens if cuttle inks in the tank
-What is the lifespan of cuttlefish
-Dont know really the lifespan but i guess saöe as octos so about 1 year. Then can i breed them? So i can have 2. generation
-Is it possible to say a cuttlefish is male or female?
-How hardy is breeding cuttlefish

Sorry its a bit a lot question :?

Take Care
If a cuttle inks in your tank use a protein skimmer along with activated carbon. Initially the ink will be quite viscous and it is possible to scoope some of it out with an extremely fine net

It is hard to say if a cuttlefish is male or female as there are no obvious external differences. The only 100% sure way is to either see them mating or to see them brooding or laying eggs.

Sp. officinalis are easy to raise as they do not go through a planktonic stage and will readily feed on live foods like amphipods, mysids, small marine fish and isopods. The foods can be up to 1.5x their mantle length.

If you wanna know more, specific info, you can go to http://is.dal.ca/~ceph/TCP/cuttle1.html or http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/BMLSS/cuttle2.htm
thanx joel but s.officinalis is too big for me

Colin you are the moderator so i m asking you, do you know anything about Rossia macrosoma? or joel do you know?
Well it has a ML of 8 cm it is also found in Turkey, I'm not sure bout the rest since there is little written about it. So anything bout it in the book Colin? :smile:
somebody shout something?

Rossia have been commonly kept in cultivations and have been bred in the UK... they have also been kept in reasonably small tanks and in batches... They move into the Med sea to spawn in april and may.

If you can get them then thats the species i would go for, i have had a standing order for some of them for about a year now.

They will require a sand bed made up of fine sand so they can bury themselves... and you could raise at least six individuals in a tank that size and chances of breeding would be high. Some rocks would allow hiding places for eggs if they spawned but avoid sharp rocks at all costs.

However, i am still saying that fish and cephs are a bad mix whether it is sepia officinalis or not. So i would never keep fish with Rossia.

Expect the bob tail squids to live about 6 - 8 months depending on temperature. What is ambient room temperature for you?

Cuttlefish can be sexed onc ethey are sexually mature... depends on species though and the differences may be slight.. arm length etc. Unsure about Rossia though.

Cuttles can be bred in captivity but as far as hobbyists are concerend its still in its infancy
make sure you take some pictures if you can so we can see what sort of areas you find them in!!! :smile:
I dived too much but couldnt see even just one cuttle or octo
last year there were tons of cuttle and 2-3 years ago there were billions of octos but people are always hunting them :frown: but they are very delicious :mrgreen:
So i think i wont put cuttlefish
Colin, what about o.mercatoris? 3-4 of them?
Octos should be kept in a species tank with only one of them, this is a general rule for keeping cephs( unless you have a large enough tank) though Im experimenting with and octo and a cuttle.They might fight over food.
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