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Exploring the incredibly intelligent resident of the ocean

Exploring the incredibly intelligent resident of the ocean

If you were to examine all the Octopuses (name comes from the Greek word, októpus, meaning “eight foot) in the sea, you would be surprised to find that some of them have fewer than eight tentacles – perhaps five or six, in which case they should be called ‘Pentopus’ or ‘Hexopus’.  This is because, when under stress, they have a tendency to chew up some of their arms!  Over a period of time, they regrow the tentacles.

Among the various marine creatures, octopuses have always been of great interest to wildlife lovers, owing to its various strategies for survival.  Here are some bizarre and unique things about this intriguing creature:

  1. We are all familiar with its most effective tool for self-defence – camouflage. It can blend with its surroundings with such perfection that it even surpasses the chameleon in this ability.
  2. Each one of the octopus’ tentacles operates independently of its body and yet they do not get tied up in knots. It is still to be found out how this happens.
  3. The suckers on an octopus’ tentacles can stick to any surface except its own skin. Amazing, isn’t it?
  4. Did you know that when an octopus is really hungry, it will not hesitate to eat a younger octopus of its own species?
  5. And of course, another tool for self-defence, which it shares with cuttlefish and squid, is the ability to squirt black ink and confuse its enemy or a potential attacker, giving the octopus time to swim away.

These and many other such unique features of this well-equipped and well-armed creature of the sea explain its survival in our oceans since eons.

For more amusing facts about this intelligent being, read the story ‘Octopuses in Action’ in the author’s book, Odyssey in the Oceans.

 

Cover Pic: Octopuses in Action


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About the Author /

Katie Bagli is an avid nature lover and she gives expression to her passion by writing for children. She has several published titles to her credit, nearly all of which are on various subjects of nature. Besides writing Katie also enjoys illustrating her own books. Through her writing she strives to bring about awareness and sensitise the young to the environment and wildlife. Her books have been recommended for general reading in schools and also to college students of zoology. Nature and environment are topics close to her heart. When the BMC came up with a plan of revamping Rani Bagh (now known as VJB Udyan and Zoo), Byculla, Katie joined four other women to form the Save Ranibagh Foundation which campaigned to save the more than 3000 trees that exist there from the construction work that would take a toll on them. Katie has conducted various wildlife workshops and story-telling sessions in schools (in Mumbai and elsewhere) and other institutions. She had also been invited by the Andhra Pradesh Government to Vijayawada to conduct a session on Literacy Day for the Differently Abled Children. She is on the advisory board of the science magazine Spectrum, a joint venture by the faculties of St. Xavier’s College and Sophia College, which is targeted for school children of standards 7 – 9. Katie also blogs for Saevus, India’s premier wildlife magazine. When she is not writing Katie devotes her time to taking tree walks, nature trails, and conducting creative nature writing workshops for children. She also indulges in fun-filled nature-related activities for the young and old, like writing scripts and organising puppet shows and plays.

Comment(1)

  • VISHAL SINGH SOLANKI

    March 11, 2018

    I am missing information about blue ringed octupuss who is known to be one of the deadliest sea creatures?

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