Take a look at my cold water octopus tank

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Chilly Willie

AC Members
May 19, 2009
38
0
6
San Diego, Ca, USA
I love my cold water tank. I'm a little surprised so few people have them. The up side is that the animals are rather hearty (harder to kill) and much more unusual in the hobby. The down sides are that chillers are really expensive, and animals are almost impossible to get unless you can collect them yourself. I've found that used chillers can be found on Craigslist (at least in big cities) for between $150 and $300 if you patiently watch the ads and jump on a deal. Cold tanks don't need expensive reef lights, so the cost of a chiller can come out of the light budget. The other problem, getting animals, can be solved if you live near the coast (if not, it's a problem). At least in California, most people think it is illegal to collect anything, but that's not true. There are some restrictions, but if you study the rules you will see that only some animals are off limits, and only some places are illegal to collect from. (I should write up what I've learned about Ca laws, and post it somewhere)

The other problem is that it takes a lot of digging to get any information about how to care for these animals (unlike tropical reef info which is everywhere). On the other hand, these are tough animals, and they will put up with a little experimentation untill you figure out what you are doing. I've found a few people who can help on the "Biotopes" forum at nano-reef.com. (and Tonmo.com can help if you want an octopus)

So if some of you are feeling the urge to get a cold tank, and you are willing and able to do some extra homework - go for it!
 

froglover007

Obsessed 13-year-old
Apr 15, 2009
893
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Alberta
That is a beautiful creature. How long do California octopus generally live?
 

Chilly Willie

AC Members
May 19, 2009
38
0
6
San Diego, Ca, USA
That is a beautiful creature. How long do California octopus generally live?
About 18 months. I'm on my 2nd one in two years. The first one laid eggs (infertile), tended them for a few months, and then died, which is their natural cycle. I might be able to get two years out of one if I caught it really young, kept the water cold (58 deg F) and didn't feed it too much. Some people don't want to keep octopus because of the short life span, but I figure that they live longer in my tank than they probably would in the ocean (tough neighborhood) and since I catch them instead of paying $100 in a fish store, I think of them a little like cut flowers that I can enjoy as long as they last.
 

powerkit

Spiral OUT
Oct 23, 2008
695
0
0
40
Memphis
www.myspace.com
Wow, for a cold water tank, that thing is super HOTT! May you get many hours of enjoyment watching your octopus have fun!!! We had one for seven weeks, he was a wonderful!!!
 

halfmoonplakat

AC Members
Nov 7, 2009
654
1
16
wouldnt it be cool to like, breed ur octopus
lol i dont even know if that makes sense
 

Chilly Willie

AC Members
May 19, 2009
38
0
6
San Diego, Ca, USA
hey, just saw this, looks awesome...
are you still running this tank
Yes. It's a little different now, but yes. Those brightly colored strawberry anemones are on several halves of scallop shells, and when the octopus decided to lay eggs, she moved them all around to make a den. That beat up the anemones. Also since the anemones sting, they were taking a lot of space from the octopus. I bolted the scallop shells, and anemones, to the back wall of the tank, so now the octopus (a new one) can't move them, and has the run of the tank, except for the back wall. I still have the gorgonians too.
 
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