Caribbean Reef Octopus Facts
- Firstly, the astounding Caribbean Reef Octopus distinguishing itself in a remarkable way. That’s because each of the eight tentacles of the cephalopod often measures different lengths and thickness.
- Secondly, yet another surprising fact sets the fascinating animal apart from its kin. In relation to overall body size, this creature also has the largest head of any of the related species.
- Furthermore, this particular form of life is definitely not a social creature. In fact, except for mating purposes, it generally avoids others of its own species. Also, while this holds true for many octopi, it seems to take it further.
- Finally, for the moment, the IUCN does not have a listing of this particular invertebrate.
Caribbean Reef Octopus Physical Description
First of all, the Caribbean Reef Octopus remains a small species of octopus. The mantle only reaches a maximum length of roughly 24 in (60 cm). Yet, this measures larger than average in relation to other types of the octopus of similar size.
Additionally, the average weight of a mature individual is just about 3.3 lb (1.5 kg). Rather surprisingly, unlike most others of its kind, it does not display any known amount of sexual dimorphism.
The coloring also remains highly varied. Furthermore, utilizing highly evolved chromatophores, it will change its color patterns at will. This it does to blend in with its particular surroundings, for camouflage.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Mollusca
- Class: Cephalopoda
- Order: Octopoda
- Family: Octopodidae
- Genus: Octopus
- Species: O. briareus
Caribbean Reef Octopus Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
As its name suggests, the Caribbean Reef Octopus prefers to inhabit regions of either coral reef or rocky seabed. It also lives in waters off the shores of Central and South America, the Pacific Ocean, and the Nearctic region.
It also prefers warm, shallow waters in which to make its home. Within these areas, it generally resides in hidden rocky lairs. Furthermore, these it typically makes quite difficult to locate.
This animal primarily feeds on shrimp, crabs, lobsters, and numerous species of fish. It remains an entirely nocturnal hunter. When normal prey is scarce, it will also to engage in cannibalistic behavior just like the Sea Swallow and Armhook Squid.