New Octos


Blue Ring
Nov 28, 2006
I had recently posted for the first time saying that I was in the process of dripping in my first octos. I ordered 2 O. mercatoris from danthemarineman.

To keep everyone updated, as far as I know both are alive and well. Acclimation was successful (one did ink a little). I have only seen one of them (once) but I frequently find little pieces of hermits and this morning I found a small part of a fiddler.

I know these are nocturnal, so I'm not worried at all about not seeing them (especially when I find what's left of their snacks). I have a little red LED mini flashlight that I set across the room right before I go to bed in hopes of seeing them. I've done this the last 3 nights but have been unsuccessful. I had 3 fiddlers in there and they are very active under the red light.

Anyway, every morning it is very interesting to see the small changes in the tank. A shell or two in different spots, trails in the sand, etc. I love it!!

I named the two Winston and Egon. They are very small maybe 1-2" max. They had no trouble taking down the fiddler that was roughly the same size though!
Sounds like they're doing well. Let us know when Ray and Peter Venkman show up!

Could the flashlight be too bright? Small LEDs can often be very bright but narrowly focused. I know someone with mercs recently was having good luck with red Christmas lights.

I use a 60 watt red lightbulb in a clamp light and Einy doesn't seem to mind it much, so I don't think the LED would be too bright. You'll see them eventually.

Sometimes Einy comes out right after lights out, sometimes I don't see him at all for a few days. I covered the window in the room his tank is in so that it is completely dark during the day, and he comes out during the day now.
I have two from Dan and they have settled in pretty well. One with eggs and one without. The one without was extremely active the first day and then took a few days to rest. Now he is active each evening and eating well. I am glad your guys are still living, and hope they start visiting with you soon.
new octos

I think winston and egon were watching while I was typing last night. I didn't try using the red led flashlight last night as I was tired. So I hit the lights and went to bed. No more than a minute later, I could faintly see both of them climbing up and down the glass. I have too many tanks, and most of them are in my bedroom. It just so happened that one of the heaters in a tank next to my salt tank was on and that allowed me to faintly see them.

I couldn't believe they were moving so fast. They were up and down, and back across the tank. I have (or had) some live marine shrimp in the tank that I think they were chasing.

I try to set the red led light across the room so that the beam is spread out a little, and it is just bright enough to see the front half of the tank. I'm pretty confident that if I give it a little while longer they will be out and about.

I originally cycled the tank with feeders (hermits, snails, shrimp, and 3 fiddlers). Everyday, more and more of the original food supply is gone. They don't really care for the snails but everything else is quickly disappearing.

I was a little worried about the fiddlers as they were roughly the same size as the octos, but I am pretty sure they went first. I think they probably annoyed them at night, as the fiddlers were very very active once the lights went out!!

I can't believe how much I enjoy these guys without even really seeing them!

Thanks again for the encouragement and insight.

Unfortunately I ended up losing winston. I did fear this would happen as many people posted against keeping two in one tank. I wanted to increase my chances of one surviving and my supplier danthemarineman said that he kept his in the same tank.

On the up side, Egon is thriving. He is really something else! He only eats fiddlers, I have hermits, snails, and live shrimp in the tank with him and even when I don't put in fiddlers for a couple days he refuses to eat anything else. No fiddlers last through the night however.

I am seeing him more and more as well (even though nocturnal-O. mercatoris). When all the lights in the room are off for a while I can turn on the overhead light and catch him out cruisin. He doesn't dart off but just sits there hoping I will turn the light off. He also uses different dens, sometimes ones where I can see him.

He really enjoys rearranging the tank. I have a couple of large pieces of live rock and many small pieces, along with shells. The tank is constantly being changed up!!

I don't think that egon physically harmed winston as I found him physically unharmed out in the open. He may have been out-competed for food (or egon may not have let him eat). I am not sure.

I am sad for the loss but greatful for egon's prosperity. He is almost twice as big as when I got him which is saying something since he is a O. mercatoris (still small though-maybe 2-3" total length).
Too bad about the one octopus...but, yes, it usually does work out that way, rarely do they get along unless they are in a tank big enough to have seperate territories. Other than that, it sounds like you are having quite the time with the little guy, hope he gets more used to you.

Fascinating animals, no?

Sorry for the loss of Winston, that's a shame. I've read that sometimes the stronger octopus will actually smother the weaker one by wrapping his arms around its mantle and squeezing it to death... might be why there's no visible sign of physical harm.
Sounds like your Egon is quite happy though. Einy was pretty similar as for his routine of changing residency night after night, and he hasn't touched any of the snails in his tank. It took some convincing to get him to eat a piece of Krill, but he eventually did.
Unfortunately for me, I haven't seen Einy out and about for about 2 weeks now. He has completely taken to staying inside a shell and only accepts food when I hand it to him. He has more stuff than ever to explore in his tank, but I guess maybe he's getting old, or he just isn't happy anymore.

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