New to Octo's


O. vulgaris
Jan 2, 2004
Hello all. I am new to the world of Octo's, but not marine life. I currently have 4 sw tanks. A 40g anemone/clownfish tank, a 55g seahorse tank, a 125g reef and a 37g tank that now houses my Octo. I was told at the pet shop that my octo is a caribbean variety. That's all they knew. So I am here trying to absorb all the info I can. Right now the coloration of my new friend is almost white, with some blue around the head. It appears to be doing allright, but has not come out of hiding yet. I am aware most of them are nocturnal but I did offer it some ghost shrimp for breakfast. I'll put some more in tonight ater the lights go out. I have a cpr bakpak skimmer and a magnum filter with carbon on the tank. There is aout 40 pounds of live rock and a deep sand bed, and 2 brittle starfish for company. I have sealed the tank up, I don't think it can escape. It is rather large, it's legs are maybe a foot long when they are stretched out. I would like to know what sex it is if there is a way to tell. Also, how agressive are they towards human's? How cautious do I need to be while working around it? I'll try to get a pic of it soon and post it so that you guys might be able to help with a positive ID. I know that they die soon after mating, how long after mating does the female hold the eggs before she lays them? I ask because of it's size. I'm pretty sure it has reached sexual maturity and am wondering if it may be pregnant, so to speak.

Hi Spring, and welcome to! :welcome:

We answer specific questions like yours over on the Ceph Care forum, but I'll start anwering some of these there.

Yes, we need a photo to help identifiy the species.

Ghost shrimp aren't much for an octopus of that size. Could you get some live crabs, like fiddlers? Perhaps it would accept frozen shrimp, but that sometimes eating frozen food has to be learned. Perhaps a piece of fresh fish from the ocean, or fresh scallops would be accepted.

Most species of octopus we keep as pets are not agressive. It will be afrid of you for a while. You might want to hand it food using a feeding stick (I used two skewers tied with plastic fish line.

That's a start - please come over to Ceph Care and post a photo or ask additonal questions!

Thanks for the welcome, Nancy. I'll post a pic as soon as I can get one. I hate to disturb it right now, being that it is so new to captivity. I read a post about a blind octo that might have been caused by a camera flash. I'll try to get a shot without the flash. See ya in the ceph care forum!

Spring :smile:
Just shoot at an angle, not directly into its eyes. This gives you a better, photo, anyway, and keeps the glass from relecting back.

I tend to find that taking the flash off and just using the tank's lights are enough... that's how all my pics are taken.
yes, you really dont get the washed out colours or sometimes the 'rabbit in headlights' effect in your octo's expression LOL.

If your tank is too dark you could carefuly add more lights above your tank until it is bright enough just for the pic.. even table lamps help and i have used them before.... here's an example I took just a moment ago....
Well, my tank isn't always bright enoough so sometimes I take the study lamp next to the tank and point it through the side of the tank. Fyi, thats why some of my pics look a bit yellowish.

As for the sexing, octopus have no suckers on the tip of their third right arm which is used fo mating. You might also see a groove running down that same arm which is used to transfer sperm to the tip.
Thanks everyone, Colin.......beautiful planted tank! I gave up all of my fw fish a few months ago, so that I have more time for my marine tanks. Probably should have kept some though, as the sell of their fry helped finance my addiction to saltwater!

Joel, I'm assuming the description you gave is for the male???

I wish my octo would come out of the hole it's dug. I've left the lights out since I got it, hoping it would feel more comfy and come out of hiding. I guess if I'd been "kidnapped" from my home I'd hide too! :shock:

thanks :smile:

it can take a few weeks for a new octo to get used to its surroundings but dont be tempted to dig it out or move rocks as it'll get worse.

try being the 'food god' and offering bits and piecies when the octo can see you, you'll soon be associated as being a good thing!
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