Many people wonder whether there are aliens in the space, somewhere out there, on a distant planet. Do they have big black eyes and blue skin? Are they intelligent? Well, here’s a thing, we have creatures living in our seas and oceans that are alien-like and also very intelligent. They are octopuses. And there is so many interesting facts about them that most people don’t know that we simply must discuss them. And so, without further ado, here’s 15 Unbelievable Facts About Octopuses.
- Octopuses have a brain in their heads, but two thirds of their neurons are found throughout their bodies. This means that their nervous system is very widely spread throughout their bodies (especially their arms) and that different limbs have a degree of autonomy that most other animals’ limbs don’t. Octopuses limbs have actually been known to still grip different objects after being cut off from the rest of their bodies. Their limbs can also smell and taste various objects because of certain chemicals receptors that are found in them.
- Octopuses live in oceans all over the world. Most of them are pelagic, which means that they live near the water’s surface in shells, reefs and crevices. Some species, though, live on ocean floors, turning underwater caves into their homes.
- Octopuses are invertebrates (animals without a backbone or bony skeleton). And they are widely considered to be the most intelligent of all invertebrates. They are known to learn from experience, have great pattern-recognition skills and they even use tools intelligently, like using coconut shells to build defensive structures.
- There are about 300 recognized species of octopuses,
- Octopuses tend to be solitary and they rarely interact with other octopuses, unless it’s mating season.
- And when it comes to mating, male octopuses get the short end of the stick, no pun intended. They are often few times smaller than female octopuses and after done mating, females sometimes kill and eat them.
- Even though female octopuses survive the mating season, they die shortly after laying their eggs. Females lay on their eggs and die because of cellular suicide.
- Some species hunt at night-time, others at day-time.
- Octopuses have three hearts. Two to pump blood through their gills and the other one pumps blood to the rest of their bodies.
- You know how our blood is red? Well, that’s because of the iron in our blood – our blood is iron-based. However, octopus blood is copper-based and instead of being red, it’s blue.
- Most people know that when frightened – octopuses release ink as they are escaping. What most people don’t know, is that this ink doesn’t just blind the predators preying on them, it’s also toxic and can kill them by entering their gills and blocking their respiratory systems – leading to suffocation. But, if the octopuses aren’t being careful, the same ink that they’ve released can do the same to them and they can die because of it. The ink is made out of melanin and mucus – perfect materials to blind and suffocate.
- Expanding on how incredible their intelligence is and also how amazing their bodies are – octopuses are masters of mimicry and camouflage. They can make their skin cells, called chromatophores, change their color in milliseconds – to blend into the environment that they are in and also they can mimic certain other creatures or objects, to hunt or, again, blend in and hide from predators. This is especially true when it comes to the mimic octopuses, who survive by mimicking other ocean-dwelling creatures.
- Octopuses are carnivores. They typically eat clams, fish, shrimp, lobsters, sharks and, sometimes, even birds. They tend to attack their prey from above, use their arms to pull their prey into their mouth so they can eat them.
- The average life span of octopuses ranges widely, mainly depending on their species. Generally speaking, they don’t live long. Some species live to be about 6 months old, while some others, like the North Pacific giant octopus can live as long as five years. As it is with most animals, the larger the species, the longer they live.
- The oldest octopus fossil is from an animal that lived 296 million years ago — millions of years before the first dinosaurs appeared.
And that’s it, for now. As you can see, octopuses are amazing creatures with high intelligence and very strange bodies. There’s even a theory that they came from space, on a comet, because they are so different. And lastly, the plural noun is octopuses, not octopi, because the word octopus comes from a Greek word, rather than Latin word. That concludes the 15 Unbelievable Facts About Octopuses.