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Monday, May 23, 2016

Octopus

Photo Credit: Albert kok 
The well armed octopus has a secret weapon. Concealed in the folds of its body lies a sackful of ink, which the octopus secretes to ward off or confuse its enemies.

The strange-looking octopus has a bulbous body and eight arms. Its bag-shaped body, called a mantel, houses a remarkable well developed brain and nervous system, making the octopus surprisingly intelligent.

A bottom-dwelling animal, the octopus makes its home in a hole or rock crevice in shallow water. Sometimes it digs a gravel nest or forms a protective area with a pile of rocks.

By day, the octopus spends most of its time hidden in its lair. When it hunts, it propels itself up by swimming or crawling along on its tentacles. It large, lidded eyes are adapted to focus in dim underwater light.

The octopus does most of its hunting at night. It emerges from its rocky lair to seek crabs, crayfish, and mollusks, which are its favorite foods.

Did you know?
  • The first writing ink was made from pigment found in the octopus's ink sac. 
  • The octopus is messy. It is easy to identify its lair by the pile of discarded shells outside the entrance. 
  • If an octopus damages one of its vital arms, it can grow a new one.

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