18 Unusual Squids and Octopuses

By : Epic Wildlife - 4 months ago
From flying squids … to shape-shifting cephalopods ... Here are 18 of the most UNUSUAL Squids and Octopuses

#13 Vampire Squid
Its Latin name translates as “vampire squid from Hell” … and the sight of the animal makes you believe it lives up to its name. Its 8 arms are connected by webbing giving it the appearance of a cloak. This bioluminescent cephalopod lives at depths exceeding 3,000 feet, in what is known as the ‘oxygen minimum zone’ … a habitat containing insufficient oxygen to sustain most complex organisms. But the Vampire Squid can easily live and breathe in zones that contain oxygen saturations as minimal as 3 percent. While they don’t have fangs or turn into bats, the name was inspired by their color, their capelike webbing, and their red eyes.

#12 Dumbo Octopus
If you guessed that this creature’s common name was inspired by Disney’s classic cartoon elephant, score one for you. The comparison stems from the Octopus’s prominent fins, which stick out like Dumbo’s big ears. The fins flap, helping the animal to navigate its way through the ocean. Even though the can e found world wide, from the waters of New Zealand to Martha's Vineyard (Mass), they’re considered to be one of the rarest species of octopus. They’re definitely the deepest dwelling species of octopus known, rarely seen above 9,800 feet … they’re known to exist as far as 23,000 feet below the surface!


#11 Stubby Squid
This is a species of bobtail squid which are small cephalopods closely related to cuttlefish, and are identified by 8 arms and two small tentacles. More formally known as Rossia pacifica, one specimen made some waves when it was observed by a deep sea drone in the ocean near California’s Channel Islands in 2016. Its iridescent purple coloring and googly eyes made it appear like someone had dropped a kid’s toy into the Pacific. But the animals are very real, and are known to favor depths exceeding 4,000 feet when it’s time to breed.



#10 Coconut Octopus
Octopuses are known for being intelligent creatures … and this species is no exception. The medium-sized animals are found in the western Pacific Ocean. Did you know that only two species of octopus are known to have demonstrated a talent for bipedal locomotion? Well, this is one of them. In fact, that’s the inspiration for their name -- the cephalopod’s unusual bipedal motion is reminiscent of a floating coconut. This animal also seems to have a talent for toolmaking. Reportedly, they collect the shells and then form them into a type of defensive wall to protect themselves.






#9 Argonauts (Paper Nautilus Octopus)
In Greek Mythology, the Argonauts were a band of heroes who went on a quest to help Jason find the Golden Fleece. In the animal kingdom, Argonaut refers to a bizarre octopus that is also known as a Paper Nautilus … which is a reference to the paper-thin egg case that is secreted by the females. They carry the cases with them as a type of mobile nest for their offspring. Their sailor-inspired names refer to the mistaken belief that these critters could use two of their arms for sails. But they actually swim by shooting water through their funnel.



#8 Japanese Flying Squid
If you made a list of things that squid are not known for doing, flying would likely be at the top. But there are in fact several species of squid that would render that perception invalid. The Japanese Flying Squid (also known as the Pacific Flying Squid) is known to use a type of jet propulsion to launch itself out of the ocean. It has a muscle called a siphon that takes in water from one side, then squirts it out the other side. That allows the cephalopod to jettison itself forward. According to witnesses, the aerial locomotion allows the squids to fly for about 100 feet (30 m) at speeds of more than 20 miles per hour, over the water’s surface. As their name implies, they can be located in Japanese waters, in addition to the coastlines of Russia, China and Alaska.


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