• 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.

O. Rubescens anyone?


Oct 12, 2004
I am desperately trying to get ahold of an O. Rubescens. Anybody know of any sources? They're a pacific northwestern species, correct? I take it they're not found in the central coast area (santa barbara).....Also, what would you say the smallest aquarium they could be house in is?

Thanks guys!
Yes, Pacific northwestern. Where to get one? Hmm... I don't think I've ever seen this temperate species at any Bay Area retail or wholesaler. Online prehaps...
im in the bay area to and i looked for a long time for one of these. I couldnt find anyone sellin them online or local. Dont think anyones sellin them because they require extremely cold water. I even tried to catch my own when i went to monterey bay and bodega bay by throwing out the fake items imitating dens overnight and setting crab pots already containing crabs in hopes one would crawl in there and i'd catch them. no luck on either method....you can look but i highly doubt you'll find any1 sellin them...
I think the going minimum acceptable size for a midget octo tank is 30G.
Watch out for these guys they have an infamously strong bite. I think their venom is very potent compared to that of most octos.

Someone was on here not long ago trying to find out if they had a gpo or one of these guys. Ill see if I can find the link.

Edit :

Here you go, this guy found one in Monterey Bay.

Help me ID this octo
Hi Greg,

You might have to deal directly with a collector to find O. rubescens. Here's a list of collectors that may or may not be up to date:
Sorry, that's a dead link (404)
Since, as you surmised, this is a NE Pacific species, you will probably have the best luck by contacting the folks that are located in either Washington state or British Columbia.

There are a few caveats to consider before you commit to having one of these beasts though:
1. Since it's a NE Pacific dweller, it needs cold water. Figure on 55F or a bit lower. You'll absolutely need a chiller and that can be fairly pricey.
2. O. rubescens is an escape artist, even when compared to other octos. If you goof on your excape proofing it will find and exploit the gap.
3. As Feelers pointed out, rubescens is a biter and their bite can be quite nasty. They are also pretty smart about biting - there's at least one (confirmed) story about a guy handling a rubescens with one gloved hand being bitten on the other hand.
4. The few O. rubescens that I've been around have been VERY shy.
Qustion: Do you have O. rubescens on display?
Answer: Sure, he's in the beer bottle in that tank over there.....At least he was in there last week. We hardly ever see the little fella.

If you aren't otherwise interested in running a cold water tank or have some other need for this species, you'd probably be better off getting a bimac. They have a temperature range that's easier to maintain and they are a good deal less likely to either escape or bite the hand that feeds them.

Redily yours,

from BC Canada

did you find one? ......

i regularily dive a site with probably the highest concentration of rubi's anywhere..... have no idea what's involved with transporting one across the border though

(oh, and yes, they do have a very nasty bite and venom too........ not deadly, but can make your arm pretty sore and your neck stiff for a few days.....)
I've had 4 of them, someone had sent them to us as baby GPO's. The largest one reached 6 inches before we sold it, but they do get larger. You might want a 60-75 gallon aquarium. Also they do bitmore than some of the othe species, I was bitten a couple of times when we where weighing them. Most liely the only way you will get one is to collect it yourself or find a local diver/fisherman that comes across them.

Shop Amazon

Shop Amazon
Shop Amazon; support TONMO!
Shop Amazon
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon and affiliated sites.