Daily Cephalopod Dose

Thoughts

My favorite animals on the planet are members of the molluscan class, Cephalopoda. This class includes these magnificent creatures:
octopus, squid, cuttlefish, and nautilus.

Why would I love such weird, scary, freaky, alien-like animals?

Just watch the video below and and you’ll see they are fascinating, highly intelligent, and beautiful animals.

LIVE Giant Squid Caught on VIDEO!

Science, Thoughts

BIG NEWS! BIG NEWS!

credit: discovery channel

credit: discovery channel

TEASER FOOTAGE JUST RELEASED!

A couple of years ago, Japanese scientists snapped photos of a giant squid for the first time, and even brought up one of its tentacles that got attached to the bait hook. That was a big accomplishment in itself. Ever attempt to capture this wild beast on video, has failed. UNTIL NOW!

This year, a giant squid has been video recorded for the first time ever ALIVE AND IN THE WILD! Teaser footage has just been released hours after I posted this- so check it out above! The full footage it will be shown on the Discovery Channel’s Monster Squid: The Giant Is Real TV Show special in January 27, 2013 at 10/9c. Mark your calendars!

“When Discovery does natural history it sets the bar high, and this ground breaking project features the very first-ever footage of a live giant squid in its natural habitat. Our crew came face-to-face with the giant squid, and it’s the ideal season finale for our Curiosity series that stirs the imagination of our audience, bravely asking questions and fearlessly seeking answers. This latest production, four years in the making, is a world-first achievement for television, and I’m excited to share it,” said Eileen O’Neill, Group President of Discovery and TLC Networks.

Once again for all those out there who don’t know this yet, I am a big cephalopod lover. Squid, octopus, cuttlefish, nautilus are all animals that have stolen my heart and fascinated my mind. This still-image from the Discovery Channel video footage portrays a glistening beautiful creature that I can only dream about seeing in person one day.

“It was shining and so beautiful. I was so thrilled when I saw it first hand, but I was confident we would, because we rigorously researched the areas we might find it, based on past data.” -Researcher Tsunemi Kubodera on the squid.

credit: discovery channel

credit: discovery channel

credit: discovery channel

credit: discovery channel

The HD video footage was captured around 2,000ft below the surface in the Pacific Ocean by a team of 3 Japanese scientists. The researchers were crammed inside of a submersible (seen in the 1st photo above) for a total of 400 hours and recorded 100 missions – talk about close quarters?! The team spotted the 8-legged east of Chichi Island, a small archipelago about 150 miles north of Iwo Jima. It must have been a moment those scientists will NEVER forget.

As you can see in the size comparison chart above, a giant squid is HUGE. This massive beast is about 16x times larger than average human in length.

I’M SO EXCITED TO SEE THE FOOTAGE IN A COUPLE OF WEEKS!? Who else is going to watch it with me?

Since I don’t have the full footage to show you, I find this octopus video the other day and had to pass it along. It’s quite funny… if this song doesn’t make you giggle I don’t know what will 🙂

Fun Videos To Make Your Monday!

Thoughts

Here’s #1: Cat videos are probably one of the most popular videos on YouTube. For good reason of course- just look at this… (Awwwww)

Here’s #2: I should have this video bookmarked whenever someone asks me why I love octopus so much.

Here’s #3: This is from a random asian TV show that pulls pranks on people..I just think I’d freak out if this happened to me too! 

Here’s #4: This is one of the most viewed videos of all time- for good reason too! It’s 6:00 mins of awesomeness. If you like to dance- take a peek at this.

Electrifying Squid Skin.

Science, Thoughts

Cephalopods (squid, octopus, cuttlefish) can change the color of their skin by contracting/relaxing muscles controlling pigment granules in their chromatophore organ. Chromataphores can be classified into subclasses based on colors- specifically for this blog post we will talk about iridophores (reflective/iridescent) ones.

A recent study found that electrical stimulation of the nerves in the skin of squid change the reflectance/color of the iridophores ranging across the color spectrum. But did you know- SQUID ARE COLORBLIND?! So why do they display so many beautiful colors?

It’s a question scientists ponder all the time- how do squid and octopus see a color in black and white which is actually red and brown- and their skin turns the perfect color that we see? It’s magic I guess (or an awesome evolutionary feat).

The iridophores are made up of complex stacked plates that cause the interference with the reflectance of light. To learn more about iridophores in the skin of squid, scientists took advantage of a dead longfin inshore squid’s skin. The scientists traced the nerves of the skin and stimulated them electrically- see what they saw- CLICK THE LINK BELOW:

SEE WHAT HAPPENS WHEN

YOU ELECTRIFY SQUID SKIN!

The scientists found they could instigate progressive changes in skin color from reddish (which is the color when the chromatophores are at-rest) all the way across the color spectrum to blue. Iridophores were found to change much more slowly than the quick changes seen in most other chromatophores.

Yet again, the cephalopod family adds something new to the list of why I love them. Here’s another cool video I found on YouTube pertaining to chromatophores in squid skin- ENJOY!

Octopus Hitches a Ride on a Dolphin’s Private Parts

Photography, Science, Thoughts

Well, when you think you’ve seen it all, a story like this comes along!

In the Ionian Sea, researchers conducting the Ionian Dolphin Project were out watching a pod of friendly dolphins. And when one jumped out of the water, they saw something peculiar dangling from the underside of the cetacean.

After the researchers came back and examined the photos more closely, they saw that the peculiar object was none other than an octopus hitching a joyride on the dolphin! Well, it may have not been the best joyride because the dolphin was most likely jumping out of the water so much to dislodge the poor little octopus from its body. A scary joyride if you ask me.

Unfortunately for the dolphin, the octopus seemed to be lodged into its genital slit. Awkward…

Who knows how or why this happened-  maybe the dolphin tried to eat the octopus and the octopus was doing this for payback? Or the octopus just wanted to experience what it was like to swim with dolphins? Maybe the octopus is having an identity (and species) crisis? We will never know. Let’s just be happy that we wear bathing suits (at least most of us) when we are swimming in that big blue! I definitely don’t want an octopus to find a place to become lodged anywhere on my body (too much?..oops). Hahah!

We will never stop discovering new species in our oceans.

Photography, Science, Thoughts

NEW SPECIES – NEW SPECIES – ALERT!

It’s only the 4th day of the year and I’m all giddy because a new type of octopus was discovered- my favorite animal!! The “pale octopus” was found living 1.5 miles below the surface in the Southern Ocean. These new species were found near volcanic hydrothermal vents- which have changed the way scientists theorize how life developed in the deep ocean.

Credit: mirror.co.uk

Another animal discovery was a new type of “yeti crab.” I wrote about the discovery of one before actually on one post- so it’s exciting to report another one! The first yeti crab discovered in the South Pacific- was named because it had very hairy limbs and claws. The newly discovered crab had not only hairy limbs and claws- but a hairy chest TOO! The scientists really wanted to name it the “Hasselhoff crab”- so right now their nickname is “The Hoff”..oh silly scientists. These ghostly yeti crabs were about 15-16 cm, and formed in large dense groups on the hydrothermal vents.

There were new species of seastars, anemones, and barnacles to name a few.

The oceans are so vast and massive…we have only scratched the surface of what is out there. I’m excited to see what the next new species discovery will be. Humans aren’t meant to know EVERYTHING. Let there be some mystery on our planet still 🙂 That’s the fun of it!

An Octopus Stole My Camera.

Science

credit: wallpapervortex.com

This is one of my favorite octopus videos out there on Youtube.

I would probably have freaked out if an octopus stole my camera and vigorously swam away with it haha. But it definitely does make for some awesome footage in the end!

Happy Monday- I would much rather be scuba diving today but shhh don’t tell my boss 😉

 

A giant octopus robot might save your life one day.

Science, Thoughts

This morning has been full of ups and downs. Mostly ups though 🙂

And I thought it would be fitting to finally update this little ole blog of mine. And of course the first story I read is about an octopus-inspired robot!

European scientists created this fasinating robotic octopus arm- as seen in the image below.

Credit: Massimo Brega

The team of scientists eventually want to end up with a fully functional robotic octopus. (Which I would totally purchase and play in the pool with..)

To make a robot similar to an octopus- it cannot be rigid like normal robots. It has to be soft- but still able to manipulate. Octopus have a musculature only found in elephant trunks and tongues- it is a very unique feature in the animal kingdom. After observing and octopus- the researchers saw that in order to push through the water- arms shorten and elongate.

The waterproof model that you see in the picture above is made up of silicon and embedded with a steel cable anchored to a set of nylon cables. SO COOL! By manipulating the nylon cables- the arm is able to grasp things-such as your hand! You might be asking yourself- Where are the suckers? The silicon was friction enough- so the suckers weren’t necessary on the robotic arm.

This technology could one day be used in surgery- as an endoscopic soft tool that turns hard to perform the surgery. Or the robotic cephalopod could be used to retrieve people in unsafe waters. Which is why- a robotic octopus could save your life one day!

I’ve got my EYE on you.

Thoughts

I am fascinated by squid, octopus, cuttlefish, and nautilus. For those more marine biologically inclined: Cephalopods!

I was reading my Twitter feed (follow me: ChanBam55)- which mainly consists of all marine or science related groups/people- and I came across this awesome photo. This is a Giant Squid Eye ball!

To be honest, I can totally see my office one day with jars of formaldehyde with little squid and octopus in them. They are just amazing creatures!! I aspire to one day have my very own octopus in a tank at my house. I know their lifespan is only around 2-3 years- but I’d make those years count! I’ll feed it the best shrimp and fish an 8-legged cephalopod could ask for 🙂

Giant squids have the largest eye out of all the invertebrates-scratch that-the largest eye on earth! It ranges around 10inches in diameter- about the same size as your very own dinner plate that you’ll eat off of tonight!

Still- little is known about these fantastic creatures. We have still to observe their behaviors and patterns in the wild. They are still a big mystery- that hopefully will become uncovered in my lifetime (or even by myself!). Who knows what else is in the great depths of the deep sea..we might discover some very unusual creatures soon enough!