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What are you feeding your octopus?

What are you feeding your octopus

I was making my lists of wants and needs for this new baby. I am 20 weeks along now

And was wondering what your recommendations are for your favorite and most needed items to have for when the baby arrives...and beyond

thanks so much
Hi,I live on Long Island and have had an octopus for about 3 months now and i have been feeding him Fiddler crabs that i was getting from a beach near me. I don't really know much about Fiddler crabs and i was wondering if they will come out during the winter, and if not were do people on this site get crabs from or what do they feed their octopuses during the winter?
If I am not mistaken you will have difficulty finding the fiddlers in the winter in NJ (hopefully Carol will see your post and can give a for sure answer) so you will need to move to Florida for the winter :wink: If that is not an option, then Paul Sachs is a wonderful supplier year round.
Articles about feeding Octopuses

During some of my octo rabbit trails I came across these articles discussing attempts to feed octopuses fish diets. The studies were done to see if commercial animals could be raised more economically as food.

Article(PDF): Experimental evaluation of the energy balance in Octopus vulgaris, fed ad libitum on a high-lipid diet
Note: fatty fish (high-lipid diet) were fed and evaluated against crabs, mollasks, etc (low-lipid high-protein)
... the low AE values of the present study
support that, for octopuses, high-lipid diets are less
efficient and have a reduced capacity for growth in
comparison to low-lipid and high-protein diets.

Article(HTML): Growth and mortality of common octopus (Octopus vulgaris) fed a monospecific fish diet.
Note: Groups of vulgaris octopuses were exclusively fed mackerel for 72 days
Because cephalopods have a very low lipid digestibility (O'Dor et al. 1984, Lee 1994, Mazon et al. 2007), high quantities of lipids in the digestive tract may obstruct the absorption of amino acids, thus affecting growth (Garcia Garcia & Cerezo Valverde 2006). Fatty diets such as mackerel and sardine might certainly not be sufficient for the good nutrition of octopuses, and complements should be necessary.

Full Article (PDF or URL): The use of alternative prey (crayfish, Procambarus clarki, and hake, Merlucius gayi) to culture Octopus vulgaris (Cuvier 1797)
The results indicate that crayfish is not an adequate replacement for the usual prey to fatten octopus... None of the 36 octopuses died during the experiment. A higher final weight was registered in octopuses fed squid than in animals fed crayfish
i have what appears to be O. Merc. I have had it for 5 days now, and she doesnt seem to like anything I have tried to feed her. she grabs it and appears to be VERY interested but then drops it and wanders off about 20 minutes later. ive tried krill and shrimp. i am trying to get away with not ordering crabs, but it appears thats all she'll take? suggestions?
I have a wild caught bimac that refused thawed scallop and even live, opened, muscles for the first three weeks I had it, but after it calmed down and settled in, it took scallop easily. Be sure to offer dead food with a feeding stick (skewer) so that the octo doesn't feel threatened by your hand.
We were never able to get our mercs to eat anything other than Cyclop-eeze, fiddlers or freshly killed shore shrimp until we tried our current one with a sliver (about the size of a shore shrimp in length and thickness) of thawed table shrimp. Sleazy eats this very willingly every other day. The question now is, does size and shape matter of is it the acceptance more related to what was available in the wild. LMecher is having good success with a contraption she concocted using a straw and plastic guitar string
shore shrimp

I had the honor of feeding a 15 foot giant pacific in oregon and we fed it shore shrimp that were collected by shoving a 3 foot pvc pipe with a toilet plunger inside. You pull it up and the sucction gets A LOT of shore shrimp. I just stuck my hand in the tank and she took it.:roflmao:
Hey Everyone! I just got what is being called a "dwarf Octopus" from Ebay- he is a feisty cute little guy. First does anyone have one of these and what are you feeding him? Mine has refused little pieces of shrimp and very small hermit reef crabs. Also is there really a "dwarf octopus?" Thanks any help would be appreciated. I have a call in to the seller but thought you all might have a better clue. Thanks sooooo much!!!
We would love for you to journal your newly acquired octopus. Most dwarfs are O. mercatoris, a nocturnal dwarf species found in the Caribbean and I don't recall another species being offered on eBay. Posting the eBay link and or seller would be helpful to determine if this is what you have.

I have only had luck feeding table shrimp to one of a number of mercs. If you take the hermit out of its shell, it will likely be accepted (my best success with this is to freeze the hermit then take pliers to the shell and extract the whole carcass then put it on a feeding stick or in the end of a pipette and offer it). Freshly killed shore shrimp offered on a feeding stick (a bit trickey) or the end of a small pipette is almost always accepted. Fiddler crabs are readily taken and Cyclop-eeze is a good supplemental food.
Another case for NOT feeding brine shrimp

Laboratory culture, growth, and the life cycle of the little cuttlefish Sepiola atlantica (Cephalopoda: Sepiolidae).

Full article available in the above link.

This is a study of cuttlefish (bobtailed squid) but points out the lack of food value in brine.

ABSTRACT Pairs of Sepiola atlantica maintained in aquaria at ~17[degrees]C successfully mated in the "male parallel position" for between 21 min and 77 min. Over a period of several weeks after mating, female S. atlantica laid egg masses containing 8-161 eggs. At 14.4[degrees]C, embryonic development took 33 days and the hatching phase lasted for 23 days (mean hatching success, 32%). Hatchlings emerged from the eggs at a mean dorsal mantle length (DML) of 1.91 mm and entered a pelagic paralarval phase lasting 6 days. Ten to 20 days after hatching, the internal yolk sac became exhausted, whereupon hatchlings were fed ad libitum on wild-caught zooplankton at a density of -90 organisms/L or with enriched adult Artemia (density, 50 organisms/L). Hatchlings maintained on the Artemia diet all died within 38 days, whereas ~38% of those fed on zooplankton survived to this point, and the remaining juveniles subsequently attained adulthood when reared on a diet of Crangon crangon. These laboratory-reared juveniles matured and successfully mated, but the females did not lay any eggs. Females subsequently died 230-250 days after hatching and 10-19 days after mating, at a DML of between 21.7 mm and 23.2 mm, whereas the smaller males died 265-293 days after hatching (DML, 17.4-21.4 mm). Growth (increase in DML) of S. atlantica had 2 phases. Growth during the first 120 days was relatively slow at 0.05 mm/day (0.043 mm/day in males and 0.055 ram/day in females), increasing slightly thereafter to day 210, after which growth leveled off. These data indicate that S. atlantica has a similar life cycle to other sepioids.

Well, maybe not but they LOOK like escargot.

I found a new international market (Assi - looks and very much like an H-Mart) about 45 minutes from the house and shopped their seafood section. Among the new items I found to try were snails in a large bucket and a small amount of water. I realized when I got them home that I did not know if they were fresh or saltwater snails :oops:. I put one one in each environment and the one in the saltwater started to crawl around the cup in a normal looking manner (and did not react to the salt like a salted slug :yuck: as I half expected). The one in the freshwater drew itself tightly into its shell so into Monty's old aquarium they went. They were obviously saltwater as the ones I have not fed out are surviving and active after two weeks. These have a particularly large opening at the mouth of the shell and the shell is semi-opaque when empty like the escargot snails served in restaurants (I have no clue as to the proper name and Wikipedia says the kinds used are usually land snails). All three octos will eat them within 24 hours where they leave my others mostly alone (Monty seems to take a liking to the others as I have mostly empty shells in his tank now).

I also picked up shell-on and shell and heads-on shrimp, frozen cuttlefish :oops:, abalone and fresh, uncleaned squid. This is the first store-bought shrimp Monty has taken (we are convinced he is insisting that food has a shell and I am not finding the shrimp shells so I am wondering if he is actually eating them along with crab shell - crab claws I find but not the body or legs, very odd). The twins will begrudgingly eat the abalone and we will try to entice them to take it more willingly but the squid and cuttlefish were rejected (which was fine by me really).

I also found live conch and picked one up to try a rescue. I am not sure if it was dead when I bought it or just too far gone but when I got it home is was definitely dead. We cut up the meat and froze it but I don't think it has been offered yet. I will try rescuing another next time but will take a bucket of saltwater with me and make sure I actually see movement.
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