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I want to know everything about Cuttle Fish


Aug 19, 2008
Hello All, So I know probably a little about cuttle fish compared to what I need to know about them. I hope to have one in the future, but I have a lot to learn first.

What are the costs of owning a cuttle fish? How much to purchase the fish.. and how much to maintain. I have no set ups yet.
Can the live in any state and climate?
Is it legal to have a cuttle fish in all states?

Also I have concerns about if it is the right thing to do. I saw a special about what they do to these fish on other countrys and its not always legal to catch them and sell them and stuff. So is it right to own a cuttle fish?

Is there such thing a cuttle fish rescue?
Anyone is Oregon know where I could do to observe the cuttlefish?

Also tell me everything.. I know the obvious stuff about them, but would like to know everything.. thanks for your time..



TONMO Supporter
Staff member
Mar 8, 2004
:welcome: to TONMO

you'll probably want to check the ceph care articles here for the basics:


it's usually best to get cuttles from a known supplier, but your LFS might be able to order them. They are somewhat specialized in requirements, though, so it's probably wise to keep a saltwater tank for some time with less difficult animals in order to be ready for a good home.

There aren't any native cuttlefish in the oceans near the U.S. so to see them in the water or get them "local" you'd have to go to other parts of the world. Many public aquariums have cuttles on display, though.

Studies on whether cuttles are endangered or not haven't really been done, but the species that raise the most concern are mostly not imported, with the exception of Metasepia, which we're concerned could be in danger specifically from hobby collectors, because they're exotic looking, easy to catch, and seem to have relatively few in the wild (or at least have a rather small range.) Many species of cuttlefish are caught for food in Asia, and those species seem to survive fishing fairly well, so the hobby market is unlikely to add much pressure.

Cuttlefish aren't restricted for import or keeping anywhere in the U.S. as far as we know, and they depend more on the artificial environment of their tank than the outside environment: you would need a heater or chiller or both, as appropriate, and a source of clean water (usually RO/DI) but otherwise there's not a problem. The most expensive part of keeping any ceph is food, in the long run, and living in OR may be a big advantage there, since you can probably get crabs or shrimp locally, either from a bait shop or collecting them yourself (in areas where it's permitted and not polluted.)

You would probably be best off looking at Sepia bandensis both because they are the most readily available, and because most other species need a much larger tank and a lot of food (keep in mind, though, that even this small species requires a rather large tank and a lot of food compared to most aquarium fish.)


Jun 9, 2006
An understandable mistake from their name, but you should know that they aren't actually fish. Sorry if you already knew that, i was just pointing it out. :smile: