Giant Pacific Octopus (Enteroctopus dofleini) Care Manual

Octopus senescence: The beginning of the end

Senescence is a normal stage of an octopus’s life cycle that often occurs before death. Some of the following symptoms typify it: lack of feeding, retraction of skin around the eyes, uncoordinated movement, increased undirected activity, and white unhealing lesions on the body. There is inter- and intraspecific variability. Senescence is not a disease or […]

Interspecific Evaluation of Octopus Escape Behavior

The well-known ability of octopuses to escape enclosures is a behavior that can be fatal and, therefore, is an animal welfare issue. This study obtained survey data from 38 participants-primarily scientists and public aquarists who work with octopuses-on 25 described species of octopus. The study demonstrates that the likeliness to escape is species specific (p […]

Experimental Evidence for Spatial Learning in Octopuses (Octopus bimaculoides)

Octopuses forage far from temporary home dens, to which they return for shelter. Spatial tasks may assess learning. Octopuses ( Octopus bimaculoides ) were placed in a novel arena, and their movements were tracked for 72 hr. Movements around the arena decreased across time, consistent with exploratory learning. Next, octopuses were given 23 hr to […]

When do octopuses play? Effects of repeated testing, object type, age, and food deprivation on object play in Octopus vulgaris

Studying play behavior in octopuses is an important step toward understanding the phylogenetic origins and function of play as well as the cognitive abilities of invertebrates. Fourteen Octopus vulgaris (7 subadults and 7 adults) were presented 2 Lego objects and 2 different food items on 7 consecutive days under 2 different levels of food deprivation. […]

Early Temperamental Traits in an Octopus (Octopus bimaculoides)

During their 3rd week of life, 73 Octopus bimaculoides were observed to test whether discrete behaviors could be grouped reliably to reflect dimensions of temperament. Frequencies of behaviors during Week 3 were subjected to principal-components analysis (PCA), resulting in 4 components (active engagement, arousal/readiness, aggression, and avoidance/disinterest) that explain 53% of the variance. Levels of […]

Octopuses (Enteroctopus dofleini) recognize individual humans

This study exposed 8 Enteroctopus dofleini separately to 2 unfamiliar individual humans over a 2-week period under differing circumstances. One person consistently fed the octopuses and the other touched them with a bristly stick. Each human recorded octopus body patterns, behaviors, and respiration rates directly after each treatment. At the end of 2 weeks, a […]