Neal saw the video tonight (he helped take them but had not seen the videos) and made the same comment about how big she looked. I will try to take a ruler to he mantle tomorrow if she is out. Cassy is not huge (unless you look back at the red light video of the hatchlings 8 months ago) but she does seem to change the size of her mantle. When she is not interacting it seems smaller so she may be making herself look big as a defensive gesture.
Andrew, If you go back a month to her prior video, you can see a huge difference in how she reacts to a hand in her tank. Granted, she was looking for food but the calmness has only occurred this last week and I set the tipod up in hopes of capturining it (and that it would continue). She will still grab some but nothing like in the past and she does not run away when tugging does not bring the hand to her. Initially, mantles seem to be the more accepted place to touch (I think octopuses are less sensetive there) but we have worked with her to get her to release us by petting the grasping arms and this seems to help to both reduce/elminate the pulling as well as acceptance of touch. I believe it "feels" good to slide their arms through soft fingers since all of mine that have interacted have played some form of "squish". I do worry a little about removing any kind of protective oil and make sure my hand is very wet before touching them but I have not noted any skin problems from the interaction.
Tonight both Tank and Cassy were out and Cassy seems to be making herself large. We think they may be seeing each other but can't be sure. Both are dancing on the glass in the area of the red lights but we cannot detect direct communication. I am hoping Cassy's "big" look is not a sign of eggs but I know it is close to time. I want to wait another 2 months before trying to mate them in hopes of putting off the inevitable but I don't want to miss the appropriate window. This is the really hard part about keeping them. I know Cassy and Tank should be with me for another 4 months but Legs seemed to brood close to this time (eggs were not positively identified if I remember correctly). I am guestimating that I can wait until she is 10 months old but am nervous about missing the window or ending her human interaction early but letting them mate sooner.