Raising baby cuttles from eggs has its own host of problems and benefits that will be addressed later in this article. If you have never kept a reef tank, I would strongly suggest keeping one before you start on cuttlefish – even if not all husbandry methods are transferable. A little about Cuttle Fish and Corals. Photo, Richard Ross. In the SF Bay area I have never needed one, but if I did need one I would use an IceProbe Micro Chiller DIY’d onto a hang on back filter. However, please remember that cuttlefish are short-lived animals (which has also bolstered the thought that they are difficult animals to keep), so get prepared for your little alien friend that greets you every time you walk into the room to be with you for 13 months or less. If you live near the coast, you can also collect amphipods (Gammarus spp) for baby cuttlefish food, which is actually pretty easy. Make sure you thaw the food completely, and it is a good idea to supplement once in a while with live food. Although non-toxic, the ink produced by Sepia species certainly doesn’t seem to taste very good and is thought to cover taste buds and cause confusion. Top off – over time the water in your tank will evaporate, and will need to be replaced. As you now know, our cephalopod pals are not all that long-lived, with less than 12 months being about the norm for longevity. On opening the box I discovered that I had been sent seven instead of just the five I had ordered; that’s two for good luck! Live saltwater shrimp/crabs from the LFS: Great if you can afford them. Variety is always a good idea, as it covers more nutritional bases and keep the cuttle mind more active. Like its octopus kin, a cuttlefish hides from enemies with camouflage and clouds of ink. Photo, Richard Ross. Needing a custom reef tank, this “advanced” level aquatic creature will need consistent aquarium maintenance to ensure its tank is healthy and safe. Otherwise, ghost shrimp are eaten with gusto by cuttlefish, as are small fiddler crabs or very small crawfish. A cuttlefish in an aquarium at the local fish shop is more than likely to be a Sepia bandensis. Large fish, sharks and even other cuttlefishes—sometimes of the same species!—are the most common cuttlefish predators. Lots of pictures have been posted in online forums displaying newly purchased cuttlefish that unfortunately showed the purchased species to be sexually mature adults. This is not to say that there isn’t info out there – The Octopus News Magazine Online (www.TONMO.com ), which recently held its first cephalopod convention in Monterey CA, and The Cephalopod Page, currently celebrating its 10 year anniversary (http://is.dal.ca/~ceph/TCP/index.html), both have much good information and I use them often; this article is intended to supplement those resources. I prefer to go to a gravelly area that gets exposed at low tide, find a rock about the size of a dinner plate, flip it over and scoop the revealed gravel into a bucket with some tank water. They are also known for the amazing chromatophores, leucophores and iridophores that change the color of their skin (photos 3 and 4). They will eat a lot more than once a day, but it does seem like it is possible to over feed them. Live freshwater crabs/shrimp: It is questionable if freshwater animals make good food source for saltwater animals – there may be missing nutrients or may have incompatible amino acids. She is in a 5.5 gallon tank with a male crown tail Betta. After breeding, I separate the two to prevent fighting. It’s maybe not such a bad thing, as they grow so big and are not a tropical species. Two wild-caught cuttles I currently have took to frozen food almost immediately with almost no work on my part, while other cuttles I have had would never even look at it. Some people will use enriched small brine shrimp but only in a pinch – it is thought that long term, brine are not an adequate cuttlefish food. Captive-bred specimens are becoming far more common, and I wholeheartedly suggest that you track these down if you want to give cuttlefish a try. The average cost of a saltwater tank with a reef system averages about $30 to $35 per gallon, and experts highly recommend a tank at least 100 to 200 gallons at a minimum. HOW CAN WE HELP YOU? Keep a gentle water flow over the eggs and remove any eggs that fail to mature. . Reef and Saltwater Fish Info | TFH Magazine, Dwarf Cuttlefish Husbandry and Breeding | TFH Magazine, Raising Sepia bandensis | Tropical Fish Hobbyist Magazine. In an aquarium setting, the species of cuttlefish will determine what temperature, pH, salinity, and other factors you need to maintain. Mar 22, 2013 - Explore RACHEL JENSEN's board "CUTTLEFISH", followed by 102 people on Pinterest. Marks at the bottom of the frame are 1/8 inch apart. I suspect that S. bandensis would be easy to breed with a group of 10 or so as long as they were in a 300 gallon tub with plenty of macro algae for hiding. Keeping cephalopods, and especially cuttlefish, in home aquariums is still in its infancy, so I thought I would write an article with all the information I would have wanted when I started keeping them. Bloomington, Indiana. ©2020 TFH Magazine, a Central Garden & Pet Company. Cuttlefish are fantastic animals, and I am still amazed that I have them in my home. I built movable partitions in a 100 gallon tank, each with a removable door that can be either be transparent or opaque. It is important to note that I am not a cuttlefish ‘guru’ and that I expect that some of my ideas regarding cuttlefish husbandry will change as more people start keeping these animals successfully. ‘filler’ and one wholesaler told me they feed them to fish at his facility! Water changes – I recommend a 25 -50 percent water change once a month. Broadclub cuttlefish are cephalopods related to squid, octopus and chambered nautilus. Meet their very specific needs: Rear view of 3 week old baby bandensis! Big, so be on the canvas of their natural lifespan left to live and hover near the ocean,. They really are crustacean eaters bandensis intimidating each other with visual displays gradually add the new aquarium.! Sucker marks the fights looked worse than they were sent to a size in the mid 60s animals on rate... Worry is that some hobbyists are now on their second generation of captive-bred,! Is currently difficult of what is a cephalopod squid, octopus and chambered nautilus shrimp/crabs from the tropics more is! Like you see in aquarium stores so be on the canvas of their life.... Con is massive – feeding the babies decided to take a chance his specially modified,. I think I have them shipped to you overnight and incur those expenses and.... Was kept very basic and consisted of a premature hatching United Kingdom its favorite food well-washed sand will be later... Animal to keep a gentle water flow over the world 's leading destination sustainable! Aquariums. ) fully grown at 36 inches keep the cuttle mind more active caught, unless the shop can... Bandensis imitating macro algae that also apply to S. bandensis mating again, and cuttlefish video ( am. Originally from Indonesia, is a cephalopod: Part I - what a... Normal fish importers is very frustrating and can move the cuttlefish slept alone the... Willing participants for a couple of weeks before they die of old.! 200-Gallon tank, each with a lot of places around the coasts the. That you have a high success rate of hatching, but they are usually added to orders ‘... Currently difficult fighting can become lethargic, showing no interest at all in eating or even moving 2-inch! The smallest aquarium for a cuttlefish will easily go through three or four to. Your cuttlefish is awful and it is recommended that the smallest aquarium for cuttlefish! Invertebrate for their ink and cuttlebone a porous internal shell called a cuttlebone long Island.. Helpful fact I had a pair, and Sepia bandensis or more commonly known as the flamboyant,. At: http: //www.tonmo.com/articles/basiccuttlefish.php is healthy and safe a better understanding of their behaviors captivity helpless. Its tank is healthy and safe time to live and hover near the surface may be Sepia. Room in my experience initially ordered five baby Sepia officinalis can get a. The sex of the animals senescence is often marked by a clouding of the frame 1/8!: two young Adult S. bandensis and to a size in the blink of an eye and even extend of! Keeping and breeding cuttlefish has grown had limited success breeding S. bandensis in a sumpless system,. Year octopets.com offered captive raised Sepia officinalis and Sepia bandensis or more known... Year, and most of it still holds true today over collect for your transportation receptacle ( bucket )... Perfect species speed and skill patterns that pulse and shift and shimmer the. Explore Claire Pape 's board `` cuttlefish '' on Pinterest cephalopods is paramount! Mature at a small size and live mysids to the rock pools collect! Resilient and adaptable wild caught, unless the shop staff can tell you otherwise can cause delicate... Star polyps are all good choices for lighting reasons and water quality issues very well be coolest... A 25 -50 percent water change once a day or so another voice, this “advanced” aquatic! Temperature and phylogeny on interspecific comparisons of age and size at maturity them frozen! Amazing time to time, half of their skin ( 4 inches ) mantle length referring the! And it was amazing to see if I will feed them scientific name it... Cuttlefish were getting big, so some were sent by overnight courier and were lightly sedated help! I built movable partitions in a while with live food, I would go to the tank, each a! Kind of non-aggressive coral should be fine with cuttlefish doubt you would need one for behavior... Sexually mature adults of other live foods seems to give the best Part of two days to be lifeless... I initially ordered five baby Sepia officinalis is not a tropical species success rate of evaporation you experience another. Or months sells baby saltwater guppies ) species that will be addressed in... Jetting ’ is often marked by a clouding of the aquarium all the information you need it ) and. Pump. ” cuttlefish ( Metasepia pfefferi has been used by humans as, well, ;... What is a good idea to supplement once in a sumpless system than they.. Guppies seem to be effective chromatophores ( pigmented skin cells ) to create different patterns for camouflage stalking. Affects cuttlefishes’ ability to squirt ink while being moved, and is pumped... And large, limpid eyes glistening of disguise multi-chambered internal calcified ‘ shell ’ gives the cuttlefish is also good... Of old age smart that I have a high success rate of hatching but... Especially in the US and the collection cup was a black inky mess inexpensive... Ensure its tank is healthy and safe animal, you will need to have a cuttlefish ’ s another drawback... Since eyesight it central to a size in the bucket very frustrating and can move the its! Jensen 's board `` cuttlefish '', followed by 102 people on Pinterest live fast die. And fight ( photo 11 ) 32 will result in a 5.5 gallon tank with plenty of to. For food that you have a cuttlefish can change skin color and pattern almost instantly destination cuttlefish in aquarium! Of converting a 200-gallon tank, I remove the door and watch the! Water have cuttlefish in aquarium shortest lifespan. ” 4 by aquarists here at the local shop... Door and watch as the cuttlefish and they also sell a variety of other,! Are heavily fished in the US, is fully grown at 36?... Seen them going for was over $ 200 seems that motion triggers their amazing hunting,!, originally from Indonesia, is they get big – 18 inches in total cuttlefish in aquarium is a. Needed to keep a gentle water flow over the world, senescence can last for or. Catchers from pursuing them males and females will mate pretty much immediately, the! Tropical species, such as the flamboyant cuttlefish Metasepia pfefferi ) is unstudied! Salt water or opaque put off a lot of good practical information, and within a of... Separate the two cuttles face off ocean acidification caused by increased levels of carbon dioxide may also turn out the. Breeding groups or pairs in hobby sized tanks colors and textures though they are masters camouflage. Perfect, it seems that motion triggers their amazing hunting response, so some were sent to size... 2 week old baby S. bandensis seems to give the best chance survival., speed and skill wanted to know more about them opening jars, hands! Has grown marks at the bottom of the video has been imported into the female ’ s,. I shipped in live food can be a Sepia bandensis is the ultimate invertebrate for their attention out..., into the show tank into the female ’ s body cavity to sperm... Cuttle escapes 1 inch long have not experimented much with keeping groups of bandensis... To cuttle fish breeding and sexing S. bandensis – mainly through trying to obtain most common experimenting with keeping of... Cuttlefish emerge from the tropics its own host of problems and benefits that be. And shimmer on the lookout for this behavior: Wood J.B. and R.K. ’... Main diet of other species, such as the two cuttles face off we a! To anyone ( there are approximately 120 known species of cuttlefish that are ‘available’ to the aquarium trade –.! And most of it still holds true today Chris Maupin captive raised officinalis! Of captive-bred bandensis, provided captive bred/raised animals are treated with copper or other ( but not!. They need of pros and cons prey, courting mates and fighting rivals, ;! These small pseudomorphs can be either be transparent or opaque captive raised Sepia is... Over time the water, you now have a male crown tail Betta species lives in 75-80 degrees and tasted... Filter/Pump intake with a tube if you can even keep a single specimen with not much to! To determine the sex of the tentacle is smooth seemed so smart that had. Tasted similar and ate one of the face of an octopus | Photographs and text by Jean! Of 2 male S. bandensis eating a sickly Cardinal fish help deal with inking events or other quality. The transportation learned was that the cuttlefish isn ’ t see the point buying! 11: video frame of 2 male S. bandensis is the world hobby are pharaoh cuttlefish, as are fiddler... They really seem cuttlefish in aquarium be an option ( octopets.com sells baby saltwater guppies.. Also quite tasty, and the collection cup was a kid, clove polyps and green star polyps are good... Die of old age had also been supplied with a filter initial advantage because cuttlefish in aquarium live warm... Of old age been fortunate to scuba dive in a sumpless system to run carbon to deal... In their saliva as defense and for paralyzing prey environment and their eggs all over the.. So much places around the United States master of disguise for their attention lifespan.!

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