• 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.

Ocho's (lucky) Tankmate

Aug 10, 2006
This is one tough and very lucky little damsel. Years ago, "Blondie" and another blue damsel started off the cycle for this tank. Blue damsel (male) was the agggresive one and Blondie (female) was the curious/nervous one. Both damsels survived the cycle. Before I had a chance to get an octopus, I had rescued and temporarily foster housed a baby Banded Cat Shark that had broken out of its egg case too early. Nursed it back to health and actually ended up holding onto this shark way longer that I wanted to. Had it for about a year and a half before I just had to get rid of it. It got too big and got way too aggressive during feeding. (splashing water all over, scratching glass and such) Blue damsel tried to steal food from the sharks mouth one day........blue damsel lost its head. Blondie survived the shark. When I was ready to get an octopus (Ocho), I had already said my goodbyes to Blondie knowing the inevitable....or did I? Ocho to my surprise, was never interested in Blondie in the least bit. They say octopus can't really catch a damsel cause they're so fast but Ocho has caught Blondie when she's been in the way and just pushes her away! This lucky little fish has never been territorial like the blue damsel was. When Ocho is out, Blondie just bobs around as if "just hanging out" with Ocho. It's strange the way Ocho is so passive with this fish and lets her get so close. I would never suggest getting a tankmate for an octopus though, especially a damsel! They can be too aggressive and peck at the eyes or just plain annoy or scare the octopus and cause it to hide most of the time. Blondie's situation is very out of the ordinary. I did have a brittle star live through a few different octopuses years ago though. Do any of you have any stories of lucky tankmates that have survived your octopus?

By the way, I have video of Ocho grabbing onto and pushing away Blondie if anyone is interested? It's a huge file though, like near 30 megs. Pretty high quality even though the tank lights are out. If you turn up the volume, you can even hear the impact when Ocho swats Blondie! I would have to upload the video to one of those free file hosting sites like rapidshare or something but then you could download it to your computer and watch.

"Just hanging out"

peering out from under the gray rock

above Ocho's head behind the abalone shell


  • conv_302905.jpg
    176.7 KB · Views: 53
  • conv_302906.jpg
    199.3 KB · Views: 58
  • conv_302907.jpg
    213.3 KB · Views: 67
What a great story! I have a serpent star that has lived with I'd say 10 different octopuses over the years. It's almost like he goes into mourning when one passes. I don't see him till I get another octopus and then he's back hanging where ever the octopus might be. And you really have some great photo's of Ocho. What kind of gravel do you have in your tank? It's looks like plain black that you would use in a freshwater tank?
Thanks! It's amazing how your serpent star has lasted so long as well. As for Blondie, she started out as just an expendable fish to cycle a tank. Now, I would actually be sad if she was to die after all she's been through. As for the gravel, yup, just plain black gravel. Many moons ago, this tank was freshwater and used to house a small school of 4 piranhas.
Thanks Phuntoon, this weekend I'll share with you a way for you to upload your video to a folder on TONMO.com and I'll make it accessible from there. Great pics. I know damsels are not usually recommended as tankmates (they sometimes go after the octopus' eyes, etc.), but it's very interesting to hear how you've made it work out so far. Please keep us posted!
i had a clown fish in mith my octo and as soon as i put in the octo my clown aka nemo came right up to him and bit him and ran lol but the octo never killed him and was the same way and let the clown swim by him all the time but he died one day cause i had him a long time theres still the octo and snails and stars

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.