Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The amazing octopodae

Some superstitious people have believed that a particular octopus, named Paul, has been able to predict sports results. However, octopodae (please do not call them octopi or you'll be seen as dim as sports lovers), have some amazing abilities, according to Museum Victoria's head of science, Dr Mark Norman:

"'We've got one octopus called the mimic octopus in Indonesia that we discovered that impersonates poisonous black and white sea snakes by putting six arms down a hole and waving the other two around like a writhing sea snake,' he said.

"'It can also swim up in a water column impersonating poisonous lionfish with all the barbs sticking out on its body so it's sort of like the ultimate shape changer.'

"He says all octopuses have an amazing ability to shapeshift and camouflage.

"'Their skin is a super high resolution colour changing organ -- they were doing 3D high definition TV as skin about a hundred million years before we got out of the trees,' he said.

"'And because they've got no hard shell, an animal that's a metre across could squeeze through a hole the size of about a 20 cent piece, they can squeeze their eyes out of shape and pull their soft brains through the middle of these holes.

"'They're also very clever at finding their crab or prawn or fish prey, they can drill through shells and poison the occupant inside and then crawl inside and eat the scallop or whatever it is.'

"He says Australia has 76 recognised octopus species, including the spaghetti octopus, which has long, thin arms that look like spaghetti, and the deadly blue-ringed octopus ..."


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