Mysterious inhabitants of the sea…
… a sighting from our vessel Stenella on 14. July 2015 at 6pm
Common blanket octopus (Tremoctopus violaceus)
Octopuses in general (order Octopoda) are considered to be smart and intelligent animals. They have a complex and high developed brain and very efficient eyes. Which all together is a “high niveau” of evolution within the mollusca order, to which the class of cephalopods belong to. These creatures lives in all marine zones. Some of them are true giants, like the giant squid, which can reach 13 m size.
Our purple coloured exemplar, which we found floating at the surface, during a recent tour with Stenella, seems to be a Tremoctopus violaceus, the common blanket octopus. This species is found worldwide in the epipelagic zones of the warm seas. The sexual dimorphism in this species is very high. Females can reach a size of 2 meters, whereas males only grow up to 3 cm. If the male finds a female for reproduction, its body is fusing with the female. A specialized tentacle of the male is then filled up with sperm and brought inside the females body. After a successful copulation, the little male is dying.
/Written by: Astrid Haas