Wet preservation of an Octopus

Joined
Dec 25, 2021
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Hello from Covington Georgia.
My grandson is fascinated with aquatic Life especially the octopus. So I have purchased, for his Christmas present, a 3 lb octopus from a restaurant vendor out of Washington State. I'm going to try to what preserve it for him and place it in a huge clear glass jar. My question is has anyone done this and what was their technique or procedure to do so I've done nothing but read everything I can get my hands on to get this accomplished for him. I strongly believe that he will become an oceanographer or something in this field with his fascination even though he is only six he lives, breatheS, & dreams everything having to do with the ocean.
 

tonmo

Cthulhu
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Hi @Glennie101667 -- I could be wrong about this, but... ethanol? Have a look here:
 
Joined
Dec 25, 2021
Messages
5
Hello from Covington Georgia.
My grandson is fascinated with aquatic Life especially the octopus. So I have purchased, for his Christmas present, a 3 lb octopus from a restaurant vendor out of Washington State. I'm going to try to what preserve it for him and place it in a huge clear glass jar. My question is has anyone done this and what was their technique or procedure to do so I've done nothing but read everything I can get my hands on to get this accomplished for him. I strongly believe that he will become an oceanographer or something in this field with his fascination even though he is only six he lives, breatheS, & dreams everything having to do with the ocean.
I found quite a few articles on the types of chemicals needed to freeze him or preserve him, guess I should say.
the syringes were easy to come by through the vet magazines and co-ops, the formalin, I ordered online from a supplier and Pennsylvania at 37% ...
now, my biggest concern is, how to pose him for the jar.
If I'm not mistaken they said that the body or tentacles and or tissue will become rigid within seconds after injecting it With the formalin or formaldehyde and then he gas to be placed into lthe container...
Along with the octopus yes the remaining formualin leave it set for about 2 weeks and then rinse it & fill with alcohol then rinse again until clear filling back up with clean alcohol....
seal the jar lid( very securely) and that's it....?
Keep in mind you, this is a 3 to 4 lb octopus it's not a little bitty one..
my jar is huge, but I was just hoping someone had some ideas on how to pose him for his final eternity..
You know how do I prop his tentacles while I'm injecting him and another area how does it all work do I hang him over a noodle rack LOL or stick a balloon in his head to keep it inflated all of these things are raising questions in my head but I have no one to bounce them off of or if someone's tried them, if they work or they failed,,,??!!?
....
il thanks again every one
 

pkilian

Vampyroteuthis
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All the preserved octopuses I have seen have just kind of been stuffed in their various jars. I know Harvard keeps our collection in 97% ethanol after fixing with PFA or formaldehyde. The arms certainly will seize up once the tissue is fixed with the formaldehyde, but I don't think you will have all that much control on what final shape they end up taking. You could try fixing in a mold or something... but that might be a hassle.

Make sure to use gloves and PPE when you are working with the formaldehyde- it can be dangerous.

You (or your grandson) will have to change the ethanol bath every 10-20 years. Should make for a smelly and memorable experience.

Octopus won't last forever in ethanol but it should be good for the next ~200 years if you regularly change the solution when it starts to discolor.
 
Joined
Dec 25, 2021
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Where can I get formaldehyde is formaldehyde different than formalin?
And I'm sorry for being so endurance on the subject but what about the ethanol as well? I know there's ethanol and gasoline but I don't think that's the same as pure ethanol. I got 39% formalin through the internet a gallon of it and I have absolutely no idea other than a mortuary somewhere local here that I could get the formaldehyde if that is the same thing. And we were thinking about using the noodle drying rack to kind of prop up the octopuses tentacles. I have no idea it'sGoing to turn out. This is all going to be trial and error and Elijah ..... won't be there because he's so young and I don't want to take the chance of him with these chemicals as adults we can handle it a lot better I think because we know that we have to wear the masks and why... along with the goggles and gloves. thank you again for your advice and input.
 
Joined
Dec 25, 2021
Messages
5
All the preserved octopuses I have seen have just kind of been stuffed in their various jars. I know Harvard keeps our collection in 97% ethanol after fixing with PFA or formaldehyde. The arms certainly will seize up once the tissue is fixed with the formaldehyde, but I don't think you will have all that much control on what final shape they end up taking. You could try fixing in a mold or something... but that might be a hassle.

Make sure to use gloves and PPE when you are working with the formaldehyde- it can be dangerous.

You (or your grandson) will have to change the ethanol bath every 10-20 years. Should make for a smelly and memorable experience.

Octopus won't last forever in ethanol but it should be good for the next ~200 years if you regularly change the solution when it starts to discolor.
All the preserved octopuses I have seen have just kind of been stuffed in their various jars. I know Harvard keeps our collection in 97% ethanol after fixing with PFA or formaldehyde. The arms certainly will seize up once the tissue is fixed with the formaldehyde, but I don't think you will have all that much control on what final shape they end up taking. You could try fixing in a mold or something... but that might be a hassle.

Make sure to use gloves and PPE when you are working with the formaldehyde- it can be dangerous.

You (or your grandson) will have to change the ethanol bath every 10-20 years. Should make for a smelly and memorable experience.

Octopus won't last forever in ethanol but it should be good for the next ~200 years if you regularly change the solution when it starts to discolor.
What is the difference between a 97% ethanol and the denatured ethanol that I'm reading about apparently I can purchase it online. I just need to know if it's denatured or not or if the description is just not as accurate as others on their websites
 
Joined
Dec 25, 2021
Messages
5
All the preserved octopuses I have seen have just kind of been stuffed in their various jars. I know Harvard keeps our collection in 97% ethanol after fixing with PFA or formaldehyde. The arms certainly will seize up once the tissue is fixed with the formaldehyde, but I don't think you will have all that much control on what final shape they end up taking. You could try fixing in a mold or something... but that might be a hassle.

Make sure to use gloves and PPE when you are working with the formaldehyde- it can be dangerous.

You (or your grandson) will have to change the ethanol bath every 10-20 years. Should make for a smelly and memorable experience.

Octopus won't last forever in ethanol but it should be good for the next ~200 years if you regularly change the solution when it starts to discolor.
This is the link that I read and now I'm not sure which one I need. Maybe you could throw me some more enlightenmen
Please and thank you
 
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