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need quick advice please:feeding a young tuberculata


Nov 8, 2005
hi every1
ive cought a tuberculata in the red sea(im from israel)
its 2 inches long-and seems very hungry
can any1 advice me of what to feed it?
any other tips?
Hi Ofer,

I think you'll need to be more specific about what you have. There are
at least six different marine animals with that species name:

Cotylorhiza tuberculata - a large jellyfish that eats microplankton
Ocythoe tuberculata - the Tuberculate pelagic octopus (not found in
your area)
Sepia (Sepia) tuberculata - a South African cuttlefish
Sclerodoris tuberculata - a Pacific nudibranch
Haliotis tuberculata - an abalone from the Channel Islands
Haliotis (Haliotis) tuberculata lamellosa - an abalone from West

Those are just the animals from the first page of a Google search that
were easily identified as marine animals. The search also turned up
freshwater mussels, desert plants, and even bats.

FWIW: None of the animals listed seem likely to be found in the Red
Sea although I suppose the jellyfish or cuttle are remote
possibilities. How sure are you of your identification?

Tubercularly yours,

You'll have to report this to your nearest marine zoologist if so; they're supposedly not at all to be found in the red sea...

Check arm lengths to be sure: pairs 2 and 3 should be remarkably shorter and there should be water pores just underneath the base of pair 4 (ventral).

Is it a male or female? (great sexual dimorphism: check tolweb for reference)


Just spoke with Steve-O (who's out of town and having car trouble); he says he wouldn't be at all surprised to hear of O. tuberculata in the Red Sea, but unfortunately has no advice on what to feed it.

Good luck!
Hi Ofer,

The fact that you found him in a rock might be the key piece to the
puzzle. It's another indication that yours is not Ocythoe
tuberculata - and that is actually good news! You weren't getting any
direct answers about feeding because nobody really knows much about
the needs of a pelagic octopus since they haven't been studied very

Since yours is apparently a benthic octopus (like the vast majority of
octos) it can probably do just fine on the same sort of food given to
other 'typical' pet octos, namely crustaceans.

What you need to do is get a supply of appropriate sized live crabs,
shrimp, or amphipods and keep a few of them in the octo tank at all
times. Your octo will hunt them down and eat as needed and will also
get the opportunity to keep his brain active. Eventually you may be
able to feed frozen shrimp (thawed of course) but, in the beginning
especially, live is much better. In the wild, an octopus will eat just
about anything that represents a good meal for not too much effort so,
as he becomes more used to you, bigger, and hungrier you may be able
to add other things to his diet such as fish or squid but always try
to give him at least some live food.

As to what size is appropriate; I'm not clear whether your octo is 2
inches overall or has a two inch head. In any case, look for food
animals that are slightly smaller than the octo's head. Something to
keep in mind is that octos seem to lose interest in smaller food items
as they grow. As an example, where I volunteer, we generally keep a
Giant Pacific Octopus (GPO)(Enteroctopus dofleini). By the time one of
these fellows reaches about 10 pounds or so it has completely lost
interest in any food item smaller than about one pound - apparently,
smaller stuff just isn't worth bothering with.

Calorifically yours,

thanks 4 your reply's
allthough ive been growing more then a few vulgaris-in the last few years-
i dont know much about other species-however-the octupus i cought look EXACLY the same as the tuberculata in the pictuers on this site---exept-its a little more pinkish.
its 2 inches long(with the body) and has very big eyes-and brown dots-mainly around the head area
i'll try and keep u posted
Hi again Ofer,

Would you at all be able to post a picture of our little friend? That would probably help us ID geeks a lot :biggrin2:

In the mean time, is it pouncing on crabs and shrimp already?

Looking forward to seeing and hearing more of your adventure with the mystery octo,

i had it in a small box inside my 160cm aquarium -but it got out somehow -and now its somewhere in the aquarium....i havent seem him since-but the moment i will-i will post pictures-or even better-catch it again .there are no other octupus in that tank-so i hope it wil be fine-as 4 feeding-that might be a problem ...cause the fish's will probebly eat it b4 he will---

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