• 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.

Starting from Scratch


Apr 29, 2021
Hi everyone, I've posted a few questions in different threads but I'm coming around to changing all of my plans.

In high school I kept a couple Bimacs for a little over a year with no chiller. They both made it to a little over a year which I took as success. The tank was 40 gallons. I kept them alone with some tropical live rock. One I got from a pet store I worked in, the other I got from this website Octopets (which was a great experience, even came with live clams as starter food).

Now 15 years later I am at last in a position to start caring for an octopus again. I got a 65 gallon Uniquarium, will get a Tunze 9004. I know the tank and the skimmer could always be bigger but I hope dedication can make up for both. Got some live rock, Ocean direct sand, macro algae, copepods, blue legs and Nassarius snails. Going to add littleneck clams, periwinkle snails, gravel substrate and filter media from a tank cycling for over 5 years.

I was planning to get another bimac, but now I am not so sure. Keeping the water cold enough would be both expensive and limit the options for live rock and misc inverts (more food and enrichment than true tank mates). No one local does anything with salt water in the 60's.

I like that bimacs are diurnal and captive bred. Briareus could be an alternative but they seem to be more shy/nocturnal and also get bigger. Hummelincki sounds great but seem to be rare/exclusively wild caught.

I want to care for an octopus more than anything, and this time I really want to do it right. What species could be a good fit? Does anyone even breed them any more? I like the look of uncured live rock from KP Aquatics or Live Rock and Reef but is it too risky?

Thanks for your help and I eagerly await to introduce everyone to Gilgamesh. Not eager enough to rush the cycle though, I expect I'm at least 3-4 months away, maybe 6-8.
I'm not sure of any octopus farms out there that are able to sell to hobbyists. You could contact the Kanaola Octopus farm in Hawaii but I'm pretty certain they won't sell to hobbyists. Unfortunately, because octopus is difficult to farm, I think most octopus keepers source their animals from the wild. I have no experience purchasing from a farm either.

I know others on the site have more experience with hummelincki and briareus, I have mostly only worked with bimaculoides and chierchiae so I won't be much help in that area.
Thanks for your response. I thought there would be some captive bred options like there were 18 years ago but it looks like no one is breeding them now. Almost want to try to fill that niche myself someday but I have to start small.

I really wish I could have went bimac but my tank is consistently around 74 degrees with no heater. I've signed up for the waiting lists on various sites. Once my tank is fully matured I'll get more proactive.

If no one is captive breeding I think my ideal species is hummelincki.

Thanks again for all your help

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