View Full Version : Brand New to Saltwater

01/22/2014, 12:33 PM
My fiance and I are planning to start our very own octopus tank once we get married and we just wanted some pointers on how to start. He has some experience with saltwater and I have none. Here's what we learned so far:

Caribbean Reef Octopus
55 gallon tank w/ 15 gallon sump
They can be kept with starfish and sea urchins, but nothing that can eat him or small enough for it to eat
They eat fiddler crabs and shrimp
- I have a 5 gallon tank and I plan on using it to breed Ghost shrimp along with having a few in the sump to just clean (Good idea? Will it sustain its appetite?)
The water HAS to be perfect, I've got lots of notes on what the levels need to be and to let a brand new tank cycle for a few months (crazy!)
Temperature needs to be in the high 70's
Dim lighting
Keep it escape proof
Clean up after it eats
Give it plenty of places to hide
Make sure it won't get sucked into any of the pumps (I'm not entirely sure how the whole set-up is so do I cover the pumps with sponge or a cloth or something else..?)
10% Water change every week
Clean up ink ASAP if it does ink (how do I do that exaclty?)

And if anyone can help explain sumps to me would be amazing. Do I have to build one? Where can I purchase one? I'm fine with building one since buying these kind of things online worries me. As in I don't know if it'll fit in the stand and it was just a waste of money worry.

Paul B
01/22/2014, 12:43 PM
Welcome to the site and the hobby. I have kept a few octopus over the years and they are challenging. The hardest part is keeping them in the tank as they will climb out of the tinyiest hole as their only hard part is their beak so an octopus the size of a quarter can easily fit through a hole this size -----> 0 <------ They have no problem climbing up your wall to die. They do eat crabs, I used to feed mine fiddler crabs that I can collect along with grass shrimp which I also collect here in NY by the thousands. As for raising shrimp, forget about that. The shrimp spawn all the time but so far no one has been able to raise them in a small tank. Octopus will also eat fish and can sometimes be trained to eat daed fish or a piece of clam. They hide most of the time but are very interesting when they come out to play. They won't ink unless you chase them with a net or add something that threatens them which is almost anything that can eat them.
Here one just spawned in my tank.

http://i258.photobucket.com/albums/hh270/urchsearch/octopus.jpg (http://s258.photobucket.com/user/urchsearch/media/octopus.jpg.html)

01/22/2014, 12:49 PM
Okay cool!! This is my first year in Alaska (military) and I haven't explored the beaches yet. Going to check that out when it gets warmer.

So when it comes to the ghost shrimp don't bother breeding them? They're cheap here so it doesn't bother me to continuously purchase them.

How do I get it to start eating frozen food?

Paul B
01/22/2014, 02:52 PM
Who, the octopus or the shrimp? The shrimp will eat flakes and the octopus will eat the shrimp unless you can get small crabs like fiddlers

01/23/2014, 09:30 AM
Who, the octopus or the shrimp? The shrimp will eat flakes and the octopus will eat the shrimp unless you can get small crabs like fiddlers

The octopus. I've been told that they need to get weened (??) off of live food.

If you know anyway to have a constant supply of live food, it'd help me out a lot. All I have is a 5.56 gallon tank

Paul B
01/23/2014, 01:24 PM
Those grass shrimp or ghost shrimp will live for months in that tank on flakes. I keep them all the time but I collect them. I am not sure where you can buy them where you are. The only other live food for them is crabs and I get them from a bait store or collect them

01/24/2014, 08:13 AM
I'm currently living in Alaska, but I haven't checked out the beaches yet. About the ghost shrimp they sell them at petsmart. I'm not sure if theyre the same, but I'll definately look around for more sources of food.

Paul B
01/24/2014, 12:57 PM
These are grass shrimp also ghost shrimp depending on where you live.
They are very common in the water here in NY.
http://i258.photobucket.com/albums/hh270/urchsearch/Project17.png (http://s258.photobucket.com/user/urchsearch/media/Project17.png.html)