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just bought 2 blue rings

hubert206

Hatchling
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Feb 29, 2008
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ok so i was reading up on it just NOW~ after buying them and was wondering.. will they really climb out of the tank? i was told they dont like the air ... and the 2 are mating now... so after the male dies.. then the female does that mean the eggs will survive hatch and will infest my tank with blue rings? do they hurt the fish? DID I MESS UP WITH MY IMPULSIVENESS??????
 
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Feb 2, 2008
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.........

ok first of all blue rings can clime out of the tank so watch out where you step. blue rings will almost for sure kill all your fish. and i think blue rings are a small egged species so they won't survive. why did you get a blue ring? there deadly toxic. but please take pics and post them.
 

monty

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:alarm:

It is very, very important that you understand what you have. THESE ANIMALS ARE DEADLY. THE TOXIN IN BLUE RINGS IS FAR MORE LIKELY TO CAUSE RAPID PARALYSIS AND DEATH THAN ALMOST ANY OTHER ANIMAL. If you are bitten by a rattlesnake, you can call 911. If you are bitten by a blue-ring, it is quite possible you will be paralyzed before you can get to a phone, and even if you do, you could easily be dead or brain-damaged before paramedics arrive.

I know this looks like one of those internet people being alarmist, but really, these animals are astoundingly dangerous. Therefore DO NOT HANDLE THESE OCTOS. The good news is that they are not usually particularly aggressive. They're *probably* safer to keep than less-venomous but more aggressive animals like cobras or tigers or something. But it's vital that you understand that from a "potential for death" you have one of the most dangerous animals people keep as pets.

See http://www.thecephalopodpage.org/bluering1.php for further information... there's a typo there, the article is by Roy Caldwell, one of the world experts on blue-rings, who posts here is neogonodactylus.

I'm going to stop here to make sure you get this info ASAP and respond to other questions in another post. Please exercise extreme caution and keep your hands far away from the octos.
 

monty

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hubert206;111821 said:
ok so i was reading up on it just NOW~ after buying them and was wondering.. will they really climb out of the tank? i was told they dont like the air ... and the 2 are mating now... so after the male dies.. then the female does that mean the eggs will survive hatch and will infest my tank with blue rings? do they hurt the fish? DID I MESS UP WITH MY IMPULSIVENESS??????

Ok, to answer some of the less critical questions here:

first, are you sure they're really blue-rings? Blue-rings, when agitated or excited, have a whole lot of blue rings all over their bodies, like our bluering icon :bluering: -- when they're sitting around bored, they just look brownish or yellowish, mostly. If they only have two spots that look like a pair of eyes, they are more likely a less dangerous octopus.

All octopuses kept as pets are prone to escape. They will happily climb out of tanks and wander around in the air for a few minutes. Obviously, they "don't like air" long-term, but they can and do like to explore in the air. If you have children, pets, roommates, and such, please do whatever you can to keep them out of the room with the tank. Some species, probably the ones that migrate between tidepools a lot in the wild, escape more often than others, but you should not assume that they will stay in the tank if it's not very well octo-proofed. And we've had members who have had their octos escape even seemingly completely sealed tanks; they're escape artists. We usually recommend a lot of duct tape, screens over all the inlets and outlets for the filtration and overflows and such, a plexiglass top or similar.

Any octopus will kill fish. They don't always, but putting an octopus with fish will often lead to the octo killing the fish. With their poison, blue-rings are more effective at killing any fish they attack than other octos, too. Sometimes they don't, and some fish are hard for octos to catch, and some (particularly damsels) will more often hurt the octos than the other way around.

Octopuses generally require a lot of effort to raise from eggs, and "infestation" is not going to be a problem. The immediate concerns are the octopuses killing you or your family or your fish. Neither octopus will die immediately after mating, but when they are sexually mature they do not have a lot of time left to live, but it may well be months. According to Norman's book, blue-rings lay large eggs, so they could be raised in your aquarium with a lot of effort, but it wouldn't be easy. As far as I know, it's not well-understood at what age the young have enough symbiotic bacteria to produce the toxins (although it may be in the eggs) or have enough to kill a human or have beaks big enough to break the skin. Since it's not known, if you see baby octopuses in the future, you should treat them with the same concern as adults. Roy may be able to provide exact details.

I do want to make very sure I come across as alarmist here: these animals are very, very dangerous. My personal belief is that they shouldn't be kept as pets at all, and certainly I think it is criminal negligence that pet stores sell these animals without warning customers that they are dealing with one of the most toxic animals on the planet. The venom, by the way, contains TTX (tetrodotoxin http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tetrodotoxin ) which is a very potent neurotoxin, and the same one found in puffer fish.

There is a bit of good news, in that blue-rings are not very aggressive, and as far as I know there have been no cases of blue-rings killing their owners; most deaths have occurred when swimmers in Australia find one on the seashore and play with it. When an octo bites, it may or may not inject the poison. They don't leap out of the water and attack you like the movie "Alien" and they don't climb out of their tanks often, just occasionally. However, Roy's lab policy is a good indicator of the type of care required: paraphrasing from memory, I believe his requirements are that no one can enter the room alone, he always requires another person be present to dial 911 if need be, and he requires that everyone working with the animals be trained in CPR.

By the way, the effects of the toxin are a complete paralysis of the whole body except for the heart. That means that the victim stops breathing. The good news is that this is not permanent, it only lasts for a few days. The bad news is that if you stop breathing for 20 minutes, you die, so unless someone gives you CPR (or, more specifically, rescue breathing, since your heart is usually OK) or puts you on a respirator in a hospital or ambulance, you will be dead in 20 minutes, and you'll be completely paralyzed from shortly after the bite until death. Sometimes the paralysis starts within seconds or minutes, sometimes it takes longer, like hours.

As with any animal, it's hard to predict when they will bite, when they will climb out of a tank, or anything else, they have minds and personalities of their own. The real issue is that should they bite, the consequences are deadly.
 

monty

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more "calm" information

OK, a bit of soapbox and a bit of more general information, now that I did my best at avoiding death.

I think it is grossly negligent that LFSes send anyone home with a blue ring without informing them of the risks, behaviors, and so forth in extreme detail. I don't know if "attempted negligent homicide" is a crime, but it would certainly seem to apply here. I know that some members have kept blue rings, and not died, and that bites are relatively infrequent, but the lethality when they do bite cannot be denied.

hubert206, please let us know what LFS sold you these animals. If I were you, if they didn't provide all of the safety information that I did in the earlier posts, I would feel that they had put the lives of me and my family at risk either through gross ignorance or trying to make a sale. Unless they warned you adequately, I would demand my money back, at least. And you should not risk your health trying to re-capture the octos and bring them back to the store, either. From the "I was told they don't like air," it sounds like the seller was horribly ignorant or willing to lie about things that could kill you in order to make a sale, or both. I consider that negligent and offensive, about on the level of selling handguns to children.

Although I don't see any good reason to keep such a deadly animal as a pet ever, I respect people who do so knowingly and taking the proper precautions. But I think no one should ever be able to obtain such an animal without being properly informed of the risks, the requirements, and the proper care and precautions. The questions in this post make it obvious that whoever sold you these animals failed miserably to meet those requirements, and I see no evidence that they even warned you that they are deadly dangerous to humans.

In an effort to make sure you know the urgent safety issues, I skimped on other information. First, :welcome: to TONMO! If you want to keep these animals long-term, you should read the octopus care articles under the ARTICLES tab at the top of the page for general information. That includes information on octo-proofing the tank, filtration requirements, and so forth. Of course, we normally recommend handling that before obtaining the animal. You don't specify what size tank you have, what type of filtration, how long it's been running, what other plants and animals are in the tank, what kind of food you're planning to feed the octos, and so forth, all of which is useful information.

Lastly, because we don't want to encourage the general public to see these as good animals to keep, our policy is that their care is discussed in the "Exotics" forum, which only registered members can view, so that we know that people are aware that blue-rings are exceptional for a number of reasons and are probably not a wise choice for pets, both because of their danger, but also because they more than make up for their bright colors by being shyer and less active and interesting than most of the species we do recommend, like bimacs, briareus, and hummelicki, which all are quite safe, friendly, interactive, and largely diurnal.

Again, :welcome: to TONMO, and I hope it was clear that I was trying to inform you of a very real and extreme danger, rather than trying to attack you or scare you away from TONMO in any way. Please let us know the details, and feel free and encouraged to discuss and ask for help.

:biggrin2:
 

cthulhu77

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Just bought two and they are mating? Ummm...this time of year?
Sounds like a troll to me. If it isn't, I apologize, it just comes across as being way too whacky.

(besides: "mating" ????? Since when is it so obvious that octopus "mate"? )
 

Jlnune07

Cuttlefish
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Feb 27, 2008
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:notworth: :notworth: monty

as far as ceph care givers...you're definitely not the guy that was picked last at recess! lol

Great info tho. In all honesty you guys are great to deal with as a beginner, regardless of the question or species.

welcome hubert and good luck!
 
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