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New Octopus species master of disguise

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Science News Online reports a species of octopus which is so new, it doesn't have an official scientific name, has the ability to mimic a large number of venomous creatures, included the sea snake, lion fish, and flat fish. While the octopus's ability to mimic the ocean bottom has been well-documented, and many other species of animals use mimicry as a defense, this is the first documented case of a species that not only mimics a multitude of species, but appears to choose which animal to pretend to be based on the menace it is facing.

While we're on the topic of smart invertebrates, BBC News reports that nerve bundles in the arms of an octopus are programmed with the necessary information to perform various motions on their own.

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GeneBreshearsread storiescontact (login required)

a typographer from Seattle, WA, interested in writing, dabbling, publishing, and analyzing