Secrets of Cephalopod Camouflage | Science Friday

Secrets of Cephalopod Camouflage | Science Friday

By Julie Leibach

Roger Hanlon’s infatuation with cephalopods began shortly after one scared the living daylights out of him.

He was snorkeling in a shallow coral reef in Panama in 1968 when a blast of water swept across his stomach, startling him. “I sort of circled around, looking [for] what on earth scared me so much,” he recalls. “I couldn’t see what it was, but just kept staring in this depression of coral, and eventually saw an octopus sitting there.”

He patiently observed the creature, taking note of its changing camouflage as it slowly moved around to feed. After about 20 minutes, “I was hooked for life,” he says.
Read more …

Source: Science Friday

Photo caption: A common octopus (Octopus vulgaris) in hiding. Can you spot it? Credit: Roger Hanlon