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Do Octo's eat themselves???


Pygmy Octopus
Feb 23, 2007
Does an octo eat themselves.

My octo hasnt been eating anything that i give him for about 5 days now. I feed him the same stuff as always (raw shrimp, scallops & sometimes crayfish) but he wont take them anymore. He grabs on to them like he is going to eat them & then he just lets go or pushes the food away.

I noticed that some of his tenticals look like the have cut off or look like they have been ate on the tips of them but the only thing i have in the tank with him is 3 Turbo snails. So i was wonding if he did it himself.

Some reason he is not as active as much as he has always been. He comes out of his den a few times a day but just sits in 1 or 2 places. I dont see any eggs in his den.

I do a 15% - 20% water change every week & my water levels test are good.

I am going to try to feed him an emerald crab & a damsel fish tonight to see what happens.

Does anyone know why he might be acting strange or about his tenticals being like that or anything else.
Your octopus could be suffering from autophagy. Colin wrote an article on this subject.

Do Octopuses Commit Suicide?

Is there anything that could be stressing your octopus out (maybe lighting)? Please don't try a damsel, they are very aggressive and you will have difficulty removing him... have you tried live shrimp, maybe even the freshwater kind you can get at the LFS (it shouldn't be a steady diet, but maybe it could hold you over until you get a shimment of live marine shrimp).

What did it used to eat?

Good luck.
In Autophagy tho' the arms are usually bitten off close to the buccal mass (the mouth). Damage to the arm tips sounds like something else....bacteria maybe?

How old is he? He may be going through senescence (old age) his behaviours sound like it and small wounds often don't heal.

If it is Autophagy there is no cure and it is EXTREMELY contagious to other octopus. You will not be able to use your tank for another octopus (if this should turn out to be autophagy) until it has been dismantled and thoroughly sterilized.

hope it's not.

I got him a month ago from an aquarium shop that got him in that day. He was still in the shipping bag. Here are some pics of his arms. All but 2 look something like this


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the bottom 2 pics is what he looked like last week


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sorry...the top 2 picks in the last post is what he looked like last week.

Where can i get some good live marine shrimp? What kind of shrimp are they? maybe Shore Shrimp?
here is pics of one arm today

is there anything i can do for him? I have done water changes & my levels are very good, i have been trying to feed him but he just wont eat. I put some Emerald crabs in there to see if he might eat them but he didnt. He is out of his den alot but just sits around. The lights never seemd to bother him before & I only keep the lights on from 10:00am to 6:00pm. Is that to much light or not enough?

or do i just have to keep tring to feed him & hope that he starts to get better or is it to late to do anything ?


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thats the problem with buying octo's from a LFS... there's no easy way to tell how old he was... Unfortuantly, that's what happens when we decide to keep critters that don't live for very long. Guess we're all gluttons for punishment or something.

God speed, little octo, to the big reef in the sky!

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