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OCTOPUS IN LARGE REEF TANK??? W/EELS+SHARKS+THE WORKS

hmlmike

Hatchling
Registered
Joined
Sep 27, 2004
Messages
4
hELLO,

I already ordered an octopus from octopets and am worried if we could survive. My tank is 150 gallons and is between the kitchen and living room where counter used to be... it is sealed for eels but is clear through all sides all the time...

Right now i have assorted large fish and large anemones and coral. Along with a 3 month old banded shark and the two eels... they're only about 16 inches long and thin...

The tank has all the usual sandstars, urchins, crabs, shrimp, etc. please let me know as he should ship Wed.

Thanks in advance,
michael
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Nov 20, 2002
Messages
5,770
Hi Mike,

I, too, think you should cancel your order, and then read about octo needs on this website - look at the ceph care articles by clicking on the ceph care buttons above.

An octopus needs its own tank, not one full of things that will eat it or sting it. (Avoid anemones). The octos from Octopets are very young and small, too. Eels are predators of octopuses. Even if it somehow did survive, it would be eating your shrimp and other things in the tank. We do not recommend an octo in a reef tank.

Wait until you can provide a good environment for an ocotpus, which isn't what you have now.

Nancy
 

hmlmike

Hatchling
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Sep 27, 2004
Messages
4
what about a wild octopus instead???

How do these things survive in a real reef... i thought eels would kill my shark because he was born in my tank, but he learned, eels even used to take food out of his mouth, but now he bites eels back!

My tank is 6" in length and has like 300 lbs of rock, so its alot like a reef...
Why can he not be in a tank with fish either??? Even my clowns are like 5"

What about requesting an older octopus, or a wild caught one...

Thanks for all the info...
 
Joined
Jul 3, 2003
Messages
295
The real reef is much larger with many more places to run and hide in for an octopus.

They may be perfectly tame to you (I know exactly what you mean, I had a handfed moray!) but it's just not possible to expect wild critters to abandon their instincts and get along with eachother in close quarters. There is no reasoning with them like you could a person. All they know is "food!".

it's the same principle that zoos follow. they can't mix bears with deer. It would be a real shame because in captivity, we have taken charge of nearly every aspect of an animals life. It's our responsibility to take care of them.

Also, with all that activity in his tank, an octopus will hide and you will never see him, probably never even know if (or when) a shark or eel nabbed him.

If you got yourself a larger octopus, he will eat any fish small enough.

One last point, the octopus's natural defense mechanism is to squirt ink, which is one thing you do NOT want in your tank! Again, because your tank is an enclosed environment.

Sorry to give you the bad news! But you certainly can set yourself up a separate tank just for Mr. Octo. You'll be able to enjoy him a lot easier that way.

by the way, sounds like you've got a really awesome eel and shark tank.
 

joel_ang

Architeuthis
Registered
Joined
May 15, 2003
Messages
2,028
IMHO, this is not a good idea.

Eels are one of the main octo predators, when your octo comes from octopets it will only have a mantle length of less than an inch which is pretty small, the eels should have no trouble eating it.

When your octo first arrives, one of the first things he'll do is exploring the tank and looking for a den. It's really likely it would bump into the eels or the shark. A cat shark even at birth is capable of killing an octo that small.

Competition for food would be anther problem, if you gave shrimp or crabs for the octo, the eels or the shark would probably get to it first. If the octo did get to the food, he would be out in the open for sometime (unless he feeds in his den all the time) making him an easy target.

In the event that the octo inks, it could put the other creature's lives at risk, If im not wrong it contains a neurotoxin and can also stick and coat the gills which could potentially kill your livestock ( could happen if your octo gets larger) including the octopus itself.

When/ if the octo gets to full size (15cm ML), it could easily take down a cat shark and the eels.

Just curious, what eels are these? Sorry i have to be so negative.
 
Joined
Nov 27, 2002
Messages
286
Sounds like you have a lovely tank!

Just my own two cents, but yes, I agree with everyone, you'll lose things you don't want too, almost certainly including the octo. They are voracious. I knew in advance before getting my octo that he would eat most of the tank's invertebrates, so I'd only purchased "expendable" hermit crabs and such. Sure enough, he was a holy terror to them. The crabs were gone in a couple days, and he happily lived off the smaller gammarids inhabiting my live rock. I had no fish his size, but if there had been, they wouldn't have lasted long either--or the octo wouldn't have, had the fish been big enough.

Please don't feel we're shouting you down or anything... :grad: :oops: ...we know everyone comes into cephkeeping with different levels of knowledge, and we're glad you've asked. Animals are notorious for behaving against our expectations, so we can't guarantee this is how it will happen, but at least now you know how it's very likely to go down if you do end up introducing him. Try a smaller separate tank for him, if you can! :wink:
 

hmlmike

Hatchling
Registered
Joined
Sep 27, 2004
Messages
4
all the help has been great...even if negative!

Thanks to all for your help...

Just kind-of crazy about having the 'baddest' reef tank... i have such good experiences with my other 'bad' creatures, i saw my shark learn to swim and now he eats from my hand...

BTW, the eels are a 12" chain eel, and a 16" snowflake eel, along with a small 9" banded shark, and a tiny cortez yellow ray...

What about keeping him in the sump of my algae filter...kinda lonely, but i could bring him out to play eventually... i am still going to try him at reef and see how he does, but i will seal sump for him if necessary...really want one obviously

I already requested that they send me one of their older octopus, just in case....

I know what ya'll mean about difficutly feeding b/c shark could not eat for liek a week around eels, until he 'baddened' up a bit... now i think eels fear him!!! Plus he does the whole swimming across top of tank like jawas now!! Not to mention yall should see what it looks like to have the eels laying on the shark, chillin! Truly a sight for sore eyes...

As far as ink is concerned, i read that i have such quantity of water and all the goodies, skimmer etc. that if he were to ink, it should be so insignificant, that all should be well... please confirm, as i cannot keep enough water around for a water change!!!

WOuld love to hear if anyone has a story they could share about octopus living with other species...

Thanks again to all,
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Nov 20, 2002
Messages
5,770
It sounds like you have a nice tank, but not one that's suited for an octo.

Your tank would also be a highly stressful environment for a young octopus. You'll probably never see him or even know when he's been eaten. One of the octopus's defenses is to be invisible, and they're very skilled at this.

One of the nice things about keeping an octopus is that they're so interesting and intelligent and they really do repond to you. It's much more than a fish knowing to come and take food from your hand. But in this enviroment, it will be impossible and you'll miss all of this.

An octo needs a den to hide and feel safe in. Also, the tank needs to be covered to prevent escape (although unfortunately your octo probably won't live long enough to try). Same with the sump. How would you handle feeding?

It seems like you'll never get to experience all the good things about keeping an octo with this kind of tank, so you should ask yourself why you'd like to add an octopus to your tank. Is this part of the "baddest tank" concept? Then it's certainly not fair to put a baby octo, even a young octo in a tank with predators of that size.

Hope you find a way to keep this little octopus so that he can live a happy life. We'll help you with further questions.

Nancy
 

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