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Shy Octo


Dec 6, 2002
A week ago I purchased a new octopus, which I believe is a vulgaris. He is normally red in color and has a body about 2 inches long. While he seems to be adjusting to his new home, he only comes out when it is dark. I realize this is normal behavior for an octopus, but I was spoiled by my previous octo which was quite active with the lights on and was very interactive whenever I near the aquarium. I'm wondering if anyone else had this problem and what they did to "see" their octo. When the lights are off, I can shine a flashlight on the tank and he is out and quite active. He seems to be eating the ghost shrimp I have put in the tank, but has not eaten two small hermit crabs I put in there for him to eat. I have also put pieces of fresh prawn that I believe he has eaten as well. Any suggestions on this matter will be greatly appreciated.
Hi Dools
yeah it is quite common, especially with a small octopus. I reckon it can take a month or more for some individuals to become used to their surroundings. Some individuals come round faster than others so just bear with it! Give it plenty calm and peace and gently let the octopus get used to you being the 'food god' it should come round in time...

all the best
My O.vulgaris only took only a few days to come out. It is now over 7 months old, so well setlled. The only time it exhibits a Red colour is when it is stalking food. It spends most of it's day visible, and all the evening out and about hoping to be fed. During this time it is a sandy colour.
Are you sure it is a vulgaris?
It sounds a bit like a nocturnal species. I kept O.bocki or something similar, this was deep Red in colour. It would only come out in total darkness and I ended using some tiny Red lights so I could see it. If you have one of those it will never come out in the day.
The best advice I can give you is keep your Octopus a bit hungry, and only use a dim light, sooner or later it will come out.

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