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Octopus tank set up in College Laboratory


Pygmy Octopus
Feb 6, 2008
Ok, so here is my question. Can someone look this over and tell me if this aquarium set up sounds ok? First off, we have a 200 gallon tank. Its already been set up with clowns in it, so the tank has cycled. I have two windows that are hinged together for a aquarium hood (should be heavy enough?). I also have a Fluval fx5 which has 3 filter media baskets and is for 400 gallons. I plan on getting rock, and already have some live rock. I have a protein skimmer but am not sure if I need it with the filter? I have heaters, but I don't think I need them. I'm not using a sump. I am going to cut holes in plywood for the filter hoses to go into, that will be next to the windows to make it so there is no escape route. I was hoping that I can put mesh around the protein skimmer and plywood to fix that issue there as well (the protein skimmer is a Red Tide (?) square protein skimmer). What do you all think?:confused:
Sounds like an awesome setup. You definitely need the protein skimmer as octopuses produce an amazing amount of waste that this pulls out which just a filter will not. I am sure others will chime in as to your other ideas and depending where your octopus comes from, you may need the heater as well if it's a tropical species.
I'm hoping to get a bimac, but as I have to get the octopus within a certain amount of time to finish up the experiment before the end of the semester it may not be possible to be specific (not only that, but they do not always carry octopodes, so they probably aren't familiar enough to determine species).
I'd still find some way to secure that lid! Octopus are really strong for their size. One of ours managed to snap a perspex sheet 2cm thick (:roll:) that we used as a cover to his tank (OK he was big but......!). Our wee guys regularly lift the perspex lid + rock to make a getaway! So I'd latch that lid or duct tape it!


I just found out that my LFS has an octopus in. Unfortunately I don't have a check yet from the school to pick up all the rock for the tank yet. Hopefully I'll get the check tomorrow and they won't sell the octo until I'm ready.

I definitely will use something to make the top heavier. I thought the two windows were pretty heavy, but if they can do that much damage, I want to be prepared, too many people looking forward to this guy (including myself). I need to get sand too and get the plywood before I can pick one up or order one.
If you want a bimac, since this is for an educational institution, you can see if the NRCC has them available (an option not open to most of the "private citizen octo-keepers." I have no idea about availability, but that's certainly worth investigating, because a lot of suppliers have been sort of inconsistent about species ID and availability (and making up names like "pygmy bimac" and such.)
I don't know exactly where you are planning to put the plywood but I remember someone a while ago put a plywood top on their tank and it quickly started to mold and bow...
I will definitely try the NRCC. I'm using the plywood on a 5"x19" piece of the tank with cutouts for the filter hoses to keep any holes from being present for escape. I'm hoping that this isn't enough to cause a serious problem.
Ok, I emailed the NRCC, but the contact that they have available bounces back to me. I emailed the director on Friday and am waiting for a response back. Does anyone know the best way to get into contact with the NRCC if the director does not respond? The more I think about it, the more I think that this is the best option, instead of my LFS.
PM gjbarord if he doesn't see this thread, marinebio_guy used to work there and probably still has contacts, and I think fluffysquid is still there but I'm not sure (I haven't seen her post in a while.)

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