Scientists have finished sequencing the first complete octopus genome, and it’s a big step toward unraveling many cephalopod mysteries, including the basis of their unusual intelligence and unmatched camouflage abilities.
One of the most interesting things on the planet. I love the story about how one would secretly get into another tank to feed during the night, and be back in the regular tank for the morning. There’s an aquarium in Seattle, Washington, where the janitors regularly have to put octopus back in their tanks – the octopus are scaling the walls!
We all love seafood — but the ocean can be a terrifying place. The ocean depths are home to some deadly and poisonous creatures… so of course, people always try to eat them. Here are the scariest fish dishes you could possibly eat.
The article is incorrect – they’re not beheading the squid. They’re cutting its abdomen off. The brain of a squid is wrapped around its esophagus (between its eyes) – it’s very much is alive and very much with brain when they start to pour soy sauce on it.
The fact that a cephalopod brain is wrapped around its esophagus is what renders those fantasies of future cephalopod overlords so silly, because a bigger brain would mean they’d starve to death.
…The cephalopod—a spelling-bee favorite, from the Greek kephalē, for “head,” and pous or pod, for “foot,” by way of modern Latin—has been around for hundreds of millions of years. Evolutionarily speaking, it is far more distant from humans than the animals we tend to have moral quandaries about consuming. In characterizing the octopus, the CUNY biology professor Peter Godfrey-Smith has used language very similar to that of Lerner’s narrator: “It’s probably the closest we’ll get to meeting an intelligent alien.” With their ovoid, head-like mantles, octopuses even look the part. They have relatively large brains, three hearts, and a decentralized nervous system that confers incredible motor dexterity—and they can squeeze through any opening larger than their beaks. They’ve been observed to “walk” on the ocean floor and even dry land. They have remained inscrutable in part by being notoriously difficult lab animals. There are stories of them unplugging drains, disconnecting wires, and resisting the maze challenge. They are known to possess around five hundred million neurons—which is not such an impressive number when compared with the eighty-six billion in the human brain, but is notable for the fact that more than half of them are located in the animal’s arms. I like to think of an octopus as a blobby, eight-fingered hand, but with a mind of its own and the uncanny ability to change color, size, shape, and texture. And then I’m suddenly not so keen on the idea of eating it.
Don’t be so quick dismissing tasty humans! They breed like rabbits, and many are about as intelligent as an octopus. But some can’t open jars… Where do we draw the line? In front of the sushi bar, of course.
What is boils down to is” Octopuses aren’t cute… so its okay to eat them.