• Looking to buy a cephalopod? Check out Tomh's Cephs Forum, and this post in particular shares important info about our policies as it relates to responsible ceph-keeping.

New to Forum and have a few questions before getting an octopus...


Apr 5, 2010
Hello, although Ive been into Saltwater fish all my life, Ive only ever belonged to car forums (my other passion) till now. Obviously joined here, because Im setting up for an Octopus.

I currently have a 350gallon Predatory tank, a 225 bowfront soft coral reef, on seperate floors one above the other, and a 75gallon plant refug all flowing into a 125gallon sump. Pumps are dual Reeflo-Hammerheads (one feeding each large tank).
Running a 4 part RO with electronic auto topoff, Homemade kalkreactor, Homemade Sulfur reactor, Phosphate reactor, Precision Marince Calcium Reactor, and my pride and joy a 6ft tall ETSS 1100 skimmer.
Everything run from X10 timers, relays, and a neptune controller.

I tell you guys all this so you dont think Im someone who is just jumping into something I dont know about :smile:

A few days ago a buddy of mine gave me a 150g tank-odd shaped being 4ft wide, 2ft deep and 32inches tall...
after debating for a few days what Id do with it, I decided on something ive always considered an Octopus:wink:

I would like your guys/girls help on anything I am overlooking or need to consider:


I have my old small 4ft tall skimmer, PLENTY of rock, sand, etc, I dont skimp on rock and know an octopus should have lots of hiding space.
Im building another sulfur reactor (it truly keeps nitrate at 0).
Im having half inch glass cut for top lids with suction handles and weights (glass is heavy though to!) I, drilled the tank and am building dual internal overflows that are slotted & reach top of the lid.
I have an extra model 24 pump (2400 gph), a four foot sump thats been collection dust,
AND the whole reason Im going cold water... I have a brand new C-0500 chiller (very expensive) i never have needed to use.

Anything else I am overlooking I will need???

I live within an hours drive of the oregon coast ocean. Any ideas on catching one myself would be helpfull, and transporting it successfully experience??

Are there any long lived cold water Octopus anyone knows of??? having a difficult time finding info

Thanks in advance
:welcome: Wow! sounds like you have some cool tanks. Your octopus tank sounds great. escape proof, good rock, protein skimmer, and temp control.

Unfortunately the one downside of keeping octopus is their short life span. 12-18 months is all that can be expected.

I cant speak for catching the cold water ones but I am sure transport is the same. it is pretty basic you want to keep the animal in good water and keep him calm so it doesn't ink. Best bet is a new bucket with lid, and possibly an aerator depending on how far you are going. It might be a good idea to bring a second bucket with water just in case it does ink. Keeping the lid closed is important so the octo doesn't crawl out and so it is not startled when transporting him.

Good Luck and Happy hunting
Marinebio_guy used a cooler to successfuly transport a pair of cyanea on his last expedition and that seems to be a simple, ready made transport container.

GPO is the longest lived we are aware of but not even your largest tank is appropriate. O. rubescens is a cold water octo up your way that Roy has mentioned as a favorite and would be a great addition to our journals if you can locate one :wink:
:welcome: to TONMO. I second the rubescens[\i] suggestion if you're catching it yourself in OR. I don't think bimacs get up that far north.
Cool, thanks for the info, yeah a cooler sounds perfect (cant beleive I didnt think of that)... I will do some research on a rubescens octopus... thats what I really needed was some names thrown out there, its frustratingly difficult to find info on these creatures.
The Fish store I get my reef stuff from suggested cold water as they thought there were some cold water ones that have a longer life span(?????) but again having a difficult time finding info on anything. I dont mind buying from elsewhere, but it sounds like transportation of the creature is small chance of survival, and thus I couldnt bring myself to do that.
I am willing to drive to Washington or even california border if anyone knows of sources there... If not Im going to have to hit the coast after dark, low tides tide pools sound like the ticket.
Thanks for the help so far, Im VERY excited about this... watching videos on line gets excitment level even higher! (although VERY sad to see some of the small rockless tanks people are using).

Anymore suggestions on catching ones, tricks or bait or anything is greatly appreciated...as I said, Im over an hour drive (two hours or more round trip) to the coast, so hope not to make too many night drives :smile:

One more question... any harm in catching my own crabs at the coast to feed it? Any type of crabs harmfull or dangerous for the octopus?
Crabs are ideal food and the only warnings have been to be sure the area of collection is not a pollution zone (Roy - Berkeley - mentions they had some death with lab animals that they attributed to possible pollution issues with crabs at one time). The will also eat raw shrimp but should be given live food for at least part of the week.

I never had the experience of catching my own and the technique would be different in the FL Keys (the one place I might take the opportunity). There are a couple of threads on catching bimacs (further south and somewhat warmer temps of 69 ish but still needing that chiller you are anxious to use :wink:. They are one of the longest lived species we keep and may be the one your LSF was thinking of. Go FORUMS->Journals and Photos then look through the three top Stickies (Lists of our Octopuses 2008 - 2010). The list shows the known or suspected species of each journaled animal and has a link to the thread. The latest hand caught bimac will be Squirt, caught in late January.

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