North Pacific Giant Octopus Facts
- The North Pacific Giant Octopus merits its name since its size makes it the largest known species of octopus. In addition, no other octopus species even comes close to rivaling it in size.
- The body of this incredible ocean species also displays extreme compactibility. As a result, they can compress their enormous body enough to squeeze through an opening the size of their own beak.
- Another distinctive trait of these creatures is the range of depths they inhabit: ranging from the surface to as much as 6,600 ft (2,000 m) beneath the surface.
- While researchers rank all octopuses as the most intelligent of invertebrates, this species is among the most intelligent of all octopuses. Some could disassemble complex lab equipment.
North Pacific Giant Octopus Physical Description
Its sheer size obviously ranks as the most noteworthy trait of the North Pacific Giant Octopus. Adults have an average arm span of 14 ft (4.3 m), but exceptional individuals have achieved spans of as much as 20 ft (6 m).
Each of the eight tentacles contains two rows of suckers, and each of these has small hooks for gripping. Furthermore, a web-like structure exists between the arms, which can be expanded into a parachute-like structure. This allows the octopus to more easily capture its prey and thrust it into the mouth.
Also, the mouth appears in the center of the arms and contains a powerful beak and tongue.
They also have the ability to change their color at will, as camouflage.
Species: E. dofleini
North Pacific Giant Octopus Habitat and Ecology
The North Pacific Giant Octopus has a unique habitat range. It extends laterally for a great distance, yet covers a small total area. This occurs because that range only entails coastal regions, includes Oregon, California, Washington, British Columbia, Alaska, Russia, northern Japan, and Korea.
The species also inhabits a depth range extending from the intertidal zone to depths of as much as 6,600 ft (2,000 m).
The diet typically includes crabs, shrimp, abalone, scallops, lobsters, clams, and fish.
Their own predators remain limited and primarily include sea otters, harbor seals, and sperm whales. They also have a rather long lifespan in comparison with other octopuses, living an average of 4-5 years. Yet they breed prolifically, with the female laying as many as 400,000 eggs in her brief lifetime.