New 8-armed buddy

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Well, this one is definitely an A. aculeatus and from all I've read and watched they seem to be very day-active. Of course some octos are more outgoing and bold than others, so it might very well just be shy and waiting for the lobby to quieten down, tank activity to cease after lights out (fish activity/lights might be too bright), or already old and nesting (doubtful as of now). Without doubt the shipping issue is likely to have caused some stress that the animal is hopefully recouperating from. Time will tell. It would be unfortunate for it to turn out to be a $60 phantom resident that none of the clients or staff will get to enjoy observing, but unlike them, I'm quite aware of the gambles involved in octopus keeping. I'm happy just to know it survived the shipping ordeal and to see the clues left behind from each night before, but I'd like to get a few pictures between now and the innevitable end. I would certainly prefer it not to be nocturnal so that I don't look like a jerk blowing my bosses money on the amazing invisible octopus.

I'm glad it's hiding a lot, considering the luck I had with my last 2 octos which were VERY active during daylight hours. This to me seems more like the behavior of a healthy octopus. I'm going to readjust the timers so that the lights don't come on until about 30 minutes after I get there in the morning. The lights in the lobby are on 24/7 so it's never completely dark and I see obvious signs of octo activity in several spots scattered across the bottom/front center open sandy area of the tank. A fiddler claw here, a crab leg there, a carapace over there, etc.
 

simple

Vampyroteuthis
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Hopefully it is A. Aculeatus, but as you can see by my journal of Fecha i felt it was A. Aculeatus as well and so did others, hopefully mine was an exception, but if it helps, mine comes out between 11pm and 6 30 am. If you do see it check if it has white spots on its body, since these seem to be very characteristic of O. luteus (what i have). I will hopefully post pics of mine later, so you can compare them.
 
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Still no activity to report other than more crab pieces. There was a Kenya Tree frag on a tiny rock in the lower center area of the tank. It disappeared. Low and behold it is now another piece of the octos den decorations.
 
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Woohoo! So I stuck a piece of krill on a skewer and stuck it in the octopus' den. Out shot some arms, grabbed the stick and the krill. Waited a few moments, and stuck another piece in, and again, out shot arms and grabbed the krill. Moved some of the shells around a little bit with the skewer, and now the octopus is sitting at the entrance of its den with its eyes poking out, occasionally rearranging the shells to its liking.

I handed it a fiddler and now it's munching down.
 
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Didn't realize how dark the video was. Sorry!

I definitely wasn't expecting the octopus to make any appearances with all the lights on (216 watts worth w/daylight 10,000k's) but I saw everyone standing around the tank and took a look, and it was sitting at the entrance finishing off its crab lunch, blowing pieces out.

I'm hoping handing it a crab this morning set up the idea that my presence equals food.
 
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One week and all is well. Everyone's accounted for. As in, no fish missing. Even our large emerald crab is still intact, although he spends a lot of time on the rock with the anemone now (I really do wonder if he realizes the protective ability of the anemone). After lunch today I did some tank maintenance, removed some leftover crab pieces. I had dropped a large fiddler in this morning and it died sometime after, so I skewered it and wiggled it around in the octo den doorway. He came about halfway out, grabbed it, and then blew it back out at me. I offered him a piece of krill, and he held on to it for a while, never got it back, so I think he ate it. I turned off the lights to see if he would be more comfortable and a few minutes later after peeking out of a crack a couple of inches back into his den, he came all the way out and we played peek-a-boo for a few minutes. I backed away from the tank and squatted down low, he came further out and raised his eyes way up. I proceeded towards the tank slowly and he slowly backed into his den. We did this a few times and then he decided he'd had enough and started putting his shells and tiny rocks back in place.

During our little interaction the fish would swim in between the octopus and I, and after realizing they weren't getting any food they would turn around, check out the octopus for a few seconds and swim away. The octopus seemed comfortable with the presence of the fish, or at least it didn't retreat or react in any other way that I could tell. They didn't seem interested in harassing him either, just curious like they were thinking "What in the world is that? Oh...".

I wish I could get a good picture but every time he comes out, he mostly stays solid black, sometimes black with white/yellow mottling, and I'm usually too excited to see him to even think about the camera until the moment has passed. Whenever I point him out to my co-workers all they seem to see is a black blob until he whips out some arms. I love his eyes. He always has a devilish look, like pointy horns over his eyes.
 
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simple;108874 said:
so has he turned out to be diurnal or nocturnal?

Well, considering it's not active during the day yet (at least when anyone's looking), and it's apparently hunting crabs at night, I suppose it's nocturnal. Then again, given some time, it might get brave enough to come out and be active during the day. This is why I'm offering it food on a stick, so maybe it will get the association of my presence and food. It did briefly come all the way out of its den, just didn't go very far from the opening. I'm being careful not to disturb any rocks, but I do use the stick to move the first few shells out of the way so I can fit the krill into the hole. Within a minute or two the octopus always pops its head out and sits there to see what's going on. The lighting is my first guess as to why it might not be too sociable, so I have set the timer to turn the lights on about an hour after we open, so maybe when I get there in the morning I can have a chance at seeing some action. I can't watch the tank all day as it's in the lobby up front, and my duties keep me in the treatment and kennel area.

Since I find giant fiddler claws all over the tank I know it's not just staying in its den all the time, which is what I was afraid of at first considering the gamble of getting a possibly senescent female octopus. I've watched the fish to see if they are tricking me by carrying the claws around and I haven't seen any of them pay any attention to them, so I'm 99% sure the octopus is disarming them wherever it finds them and taking the rest back to its lair.
 
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Apparently the timer turns the lights off before we close at 6. I haven't changed them because I figured it would create more opportunity for someone to see the octopus.

This morning they're telling me that they heard a woman screaming in the lobby last night. Turns out she saw our 'pus. Wish I'd been here.
 
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All fish still alive and no signs of any stress among them. Kharma remains secretive, but today I took some shrimp to work and offered that and she took it. It was nice to reassure my coworkers there still really is an octopus in there! Its arms shot out and grabbed the stick. I gently poked at an arm with a finger and it held me for a second, then retreated into the hole, still clamped down on the stick. I held the other end for about 10 minutes, and it held tight the whole time. I left it to its shrimp and turned the lights out. Later I found the tail of the shrimp across the tank in the anemone, so I don't know how much the octopus ate, or how the shrimp ended up there. Likely discarded by the octopus and taken to the anemone by the gold striped maroon clown. I have a hard time offering foods directly to the octopus because the serpent stars and red brittle star have taken up residence in the rocks directly above the octopuses den.
 
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Well I don't believe this octopus is ever going to become sociable. There's the bright lighting to consider as well as the very active fish, perhaps the activity in the lobby also. I put a couple of fiddler crabs in last week, and they are still alive. I even shoved one of them into the den and the octopus had no desire to mess with it. It will still play a little tug-o-war with me when I put a stick near the den, but discards any food I offer. Considering the apparent lack of appetite and activity, I'm assuming it is a female, and likely has eggs.
 
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