Octopus Opens Food Canister While Fending Off a Shark

octopus photo
Video screen capture. Lauren De Vos

Lauren De Vos/Video screen capture

"Foiled by an octopus," writes Lauren De Vos of Save our Seas Foundation
about the latest test-run of a baited remote underwater video (BRUV) system being developed to provide researchers with a cheap, simple way to monitor sealife.

But this octopus in False Bay, Cape Town has decided that it's far, far too simple. Not only did the octopus make quick work of opening the canister to get at all the bait, but it did so while fending off a pajama catshark with just one tentacle!

Foiled by an octopus ... from Lauren De Vos on Vimeo.

If you had any doubt about how bright these creatures are, let this be a lesson. Never doubt the octopus!

John Sinteur writes on his blog of the amazingness of the octopus in this video:

The whole stunningly intelligent and curious assemblage of neural machinery bears only the most fundamental and distant resemblance to our own, and it evolved all on its own for lo these many hundreds of millions of years to suit the needs of a soft-bodied marine organism with eight arms and that lives for only a few short years at most, yet it rivals some of the best brains that our own evolutionary heritage has come up with.
Octopus are truly the closest thing to alien intelligences that exists on this planet. If we ever do meet creatures from another world, the experience will be less like trying to communicate with someone from another country or even like trying to communicate with an elephant or a dolphin, and much more like trying to get inside the squishy, gelatinous head of an octopus. I love them so much.