[Octopus]: O. Minor?

ACC4

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Sep 30, 2021
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Hello all! My name is Alyssa and I live in the DC metro area. I’ve been a fan of this site for about a year and a half now. I’ve sucked down every bit of information I can find about cephalopods online, in magazines, books and scholarly journals and have learned a lot from this site.
My current octopus is (possibly) a O. Minor. He’s male and his name is Elephant :smile: he resides in my custom edited 50 gal aquarium. It’s my first marine aquarium, so although I was never an “expert” My obsessive desire, dedicated learning and countless hours have enabled me to be successful with several octopuses now. (Note: I label it success only when the octopus eats regularly, has good coloring and exhibits normal behavior for cephalopods. The tank I bought used and then did the editing to it to make it octopus safe. All of the openings are smaller or thinner than his beak, the overflow goes down to the sump underneath and the top I drilled little screws into the frame so the plastic latches could be turned to keep the lid tightly secured and hold the overflow pipe drain top on so he doesn’t pull it apart. Size wise -if Elephant’s mantle were laying in my palm his mantle length would be a bit longer than my palm and his longest arms would reach just past my elbow. I’ve had him for a couple months and he’s really thriving so I thought I’d start a journal here to mention what has and hasn’t worked for him and his predecessors. I replaced the top the aquarium came with with acrylic and the bottom as well as it shattered when drilling for the center two pipes that are in the middle of the aquarium. There is a massive amount of live rock in the tank and an inch and a 1/4 to an inch and 1/2 of carrib-sea rock. He only eats live food: emerald crabs, hermit crabs, sea snails, and clams and he has managed to eat a peppermint shrimp but only one of the two that were in there. I keep his tank stocked with the other creatures so he always has access to a meal. He litters the shells and crab parts everywhere but mainly outside of his favorite den. I cannot stress enough the truth to the advice I’ve read on here a number of times- “give them good hiding dens that you cannot see the octopus in so that he feels secure and he will be happier and come out more!” He still pretty much exclusively comes out when it is pitch black. I have his tank in my walkout closet so he can have total darkness. And I have 3 night vision cameras that point at different angles and sides of his kingdom so lots of black and white videos and pics and am starting to add to his Instagram page (@Elephant.the.Octopus) I’ll attach some pictures to this post, not sure how to upload videos on here yet, I’m still learning how to navigate a forum (yes I know, worst millennial ever lol)
When I got him a couple months ago I did a veryyy slow drip acclimation that was over 6 hours then brought the bucket to the top of the aquarium and allowed him to decide when to let himself into the tank-to my surprise he did almost immediately. Then the first three days I left him completely alone (minus the 30 seconds a day I’d slip in just to clean the protein skimmer, get water sample for testing and top off his water) Every single octopus I’ve had has shown very different personalities, and Elephant is not as interested in me as most have been. He sees me or my phone and stares me down for about 10 seconds and then heads away-interestingly he never goes to his favorite den while Im watching him, but he does take cover elsewhere lol. He is almost always this orangish or reddish kind of color with some interesting patterns and his skin gets scrunched looking like an elephant’s in the picture that has a weird blue spot on it-note that that was a camera glare, his skin was not blue like that. He also sometimes makes little raised bumps, but only on his mantle. He’s also less interested in the toys and novel items I place in his tank than the other octopuses I’ve had-he seems more easily frightened than the others. Does anyone think he could be a different type of octopus than the octopus minor? He looks rather similar to some pictures I’ve seen on here that people have listed being the o. Briareus—though I scuba dived with that species a number of times, seen at least half a dozen of them on night dives in Roatan and Utila Honduras and they had much shorter, stubbier arms and I’ve always seen those in a “default color” of blue green with brown, not this orangish red..
 

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timothytyler113

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Apr 13, 2019
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Welcome to the site. It seems to me you are pretty well off when it comes to experience and knowledge. As far as ID goes. That is difficult at times. Giving the fact octopus are color and shape changing to some degree, to have one be properly identified doesn't seem to be come outside of the usual like bimacs, blue rings and other more identifiable species. O. Minor could be a culprit. Though it is hard for me say. I will do some searching and we shall see if we come up with the same species.
It is a good size octopus.
 

ACC4

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Thanks Tim!
Right, add in unknown age and how size varies even within the same species that it’s no wonder they are difficult to type!

 

timothytyler113

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I am going to say that O. minor is a good call, but It is hard to say because there doesn't seem to be a lot of good photos, atleast of healthy ones.
O. Minor seems to be a common korean octopus. So the videos and pics that you do find are either not properly identified octopus photos or appear to be sickly or dying/dead octopuses(food).
The proportions of Elephant seems to match up though.
Take a look at this. See if it matches up
 

ACC4

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I am going to say that O. minor is a good call, but It is hard to say because there doesn't seem to be a lot of good photos, atleast of healthy ones.
O. Minor seems to be a common korean octopus. So the videos and pics that you do find are either not properly identified octopus photos or appear to be sickly or dying/dead octopuses(food).
The proportions of Elephant seems to match up though.
Take a look at this. See if it matches up
Yes! That link and their description of an H-mart with dead/dying(food) octopuses is exactly right, down to the men not speaking much English and saying “tomorrow”
The first time I saw the sign for live octopus I asked and they kept saying “Friday” and the time: “noon” and I came and sure enough they were there, I’ve taken a few home (one at a time of course) but usually they already have splotches of skin missing and once acclimated only live days to a few weeks (even though my tank testing shows nothing wrong for an octo) and are clearly in senescence, doing odd things, not hiding in the caves, not coloring up, some have seemed very “sweet” as in coming up and resting on my arm seemingly stroking me with their arms while it’s in the tank and just running their arms along mine holding onto me, I had one that lived about a month after I had him and he would not always hide when seeing my face, but at least would attempt to move to a further away spot from me and then one night and I started with just a finger in the tank and then a hand and he was curious I was making my hand mimic him and try to get my hand to look like an octopus and move along the glass and back away etc well after about an hour of this he was swimming by touching me and reaching one arm out to touch and hold onto my finger then another, and tasting/touching me -it was dark and with the water flow I was standing above the water and the water on top was so rough you can’t see anything clearly, and when he was holding me I leaned over to the side and looked at each other and he BOLTeD like holy shit that’s the thing I’ve been touching!? Which is particularly funny because I know they are intelligent enough to have connected all the other times my hands were attached to my body & face while cleaning or releasing food or stimulating objects into his tank. But anyway, elephant is slightly bigger and gripped my finger harder than any of the others, he bit me when I was putting some crustaceans outside his main cave, he reached out, and pulled me to his cave entrance and then as far in as my finger could fit he then bit my finger!! 😂 funny.
 


ACC4

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I am going to say that O. minor is a good call, but It is hard to say because there doesn't seem to be a lot of good photos, atleast of healthy ones.
O. Minor seems to be a common korean octopus.
So what I believe
Yes! That link and their description of another member’s experience with H-mart with dead/dying(food) octopuses is exactly right, down to the men not speaking much English and saying “tomorrow” same

So what I think happened was they were catching the dying octos over in Korea and I think Elephant just slipped in to eat some of the weak dying octos and managed to get caught himself!

Here’s last night just slipping by
 

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