When it comes to octopus, you might imagine an underwater creature with massive bulbous head, large eyes, and eight distinctive arms. But the octopus in this post is a different case. It will change your thoughts of common octopuses.
Adorabilis or Flapjack octopus is an unclassified octopus with cute eyes that look like puppy dog eyes. The tiny creature has stubby little tentacles, is bright pink, and looks like a cute cartoon character. They have tinier ‘wing-like’ fins on its head and eight jointed legs which are affixed together in an umbrella shape. Thanks to its unique and adorable appearance, it has been labeled the cutest octopus in the world.
“As someone that’s describing this species, you get to pick what the specific name is…” says Stephanie Bush, a marine biology researcher at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. “One of the thoughts I had was making it Opisthoteuthis Adorabilis. Because they are just… yeah. They’re really cute.”
The full scientific name is ‘Opisthotheusis Adorabilis’, but now it is just known as the ‘flapjack octopus’. “I thought that since this animal is so adorable, I should name it adorabilis,” laughed Bush. “I’m supposed to be this really serious stoic scientist, but I’m still human. It’s just so cute.”
The flapjack octopuses prey on small fish, planktons, crustaceans, and worms. Against predators, they hide through crevices and under rocks. They move their fins and flap their webbed arms to swim. However, they often spend most of their time sitting on the deep sea floor.
In the Finding Nemo movie, one of Nemo’s classmates, Pearl, is a flapjack octopus. The flapjack octopuses also appear in a children’s book The Adventures of a Flapjack Octopus.
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