Blanket Octopus

Tish

SF VIP
I am so excited about this news.

A Queensland marine biologist has come face to face with a rare rainbow-like species of octopus while snorkelling off Lady Elliot Island on the Great Barrier Reef.

Sightings of the blanket octopus are so rare it is believed to have only been spotted three times in waters off the island.

This latest encounter takes that tally to four.

Marine biologist and reef guide Jacinta Shackleton has been conducting research and diving around Lady Elliot Island for almost four years.

"I was just out on a bit of a snorkel [on January 6], we were looking for some manta rays and turtles," she said.

"We came across what I thought was initially a juvenile fish, with some really long fins, but as it came closer, I saw it was really colourful, like a bright red and bright orange, and realised it was a blanket octopus.

"I was really, really excited and couldn't stop screaming into my snorkel."
She said the species generally spends its time in the open ocean, so to see it on the reef was "really special".

"This particular one had eye spots all over its blankets, which we think is a method to deter predators.

"I knew so little about them … I didn't even know whether it was a dangerous species, but I later learnt that it was, so it was lucky that we did keep a bit of distance.

"They're actually able to take stinging cells from other animals [like jellyfish] and then utilise those themselves.

"It was just really hard to take my eyes off it, it was so beautiful."

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IFortuna

Member
Location
Texas
Here is a lovely article on the beautiful octopus:

“Evidence of the role of extraterrestrial viruses in affecting terrestrial evolution has recently been plausibly implied in the gene and transcriptome sequencing of Cephalopods,” they explain in the study. “The genome of the Octopus shows a staggering level of complexity with 33 000 protein-coding genes more than is present in Homo sapiens.” And here’s the pièce de résistance: “The transformative genes leading from the consensus ancestral Nautilus […] to the common Cuttlefish […] to Squid […] to the common Octopus […] are not easily to be found in any pre-existing life form – it is plausible then to suggest they seem to be borrowed from a far distant ‘future’ in terms of terrestrial evolution, or more realistically from the cosmos at large.”

https://cordis.europa.eu/article/id/123479-trending-science-do-octopuses-come-from-outer-space
 

IFortuna

Member
Location
Texas
Here is the other side of the coin:

I want to believe the conclusions of a new paper that says octopuses are actually space aliens whose frozen eggs first came to Earth aboard an icy meteor. I want to believe that humans, too, are aliens — the final descendants of an extraterrestrial virus that crashed to Earth 540 million years ago and sent evolution spiraling into wild new directions. I want to believe that the universe is one giant biosphere, tossing the same building blocks of life from planet to planet in a never-ending game of cosmic hot potato.


I want to believe these things because they are cool and fascinating — but I probably shouldn't. Because right now, there is still almost no evidence for any of this. And researchers not involved with this study have serious reservations about its conclusion. [7 Theories on the Origin of Life]

https://www.livescience.com/62594-octopuses-are-not-aliens-panspermia.html

(My Prof is on this side) :)
 
I want to believe the conclusions of a new paper that says octopuses are actually space aliens whose frozen eggs first came to Earth aboard an icy meteor. I want to believe that humans, too, are aliens — the final descendants of an extraterrestrial virus that crashed to Earth 540 million years ago and sent evolution spiraling into wild new directions. I want to believe that the universe is one giant biosphere, tossing the same building blocks of life from planet to planet in a never-ending game of cosmic hot potato.


I want to believe these things because they are cool and fascinating — but I probably shouldn't. Because right now, there is still almost no evidence for any of this. And researchers not involved with this study have serious reservations about its conclusion
Interesting perspective! You make a good point, wanting to believe something and actually believing it are different things.

I would like to believe we are descendants of alien telephone sanitizers. But we probably aren't.

From the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy; when the planet Golgafrincham realized it was about to be eaten by a mutant star-goat it sent out 3 Arcs:

Ark A of leaders and scientists; Ark B of useless people like hairdressers, middlemen and telephone sanitizers; and Ark C of the little people who made stuff and got stuff done. Ark B took off first, sent toward a distant insignificant planet, which turned out to be our prehistoric Earth.

https://realmoney.thestreet.com/inv...the-galaxy-has-to-say-about-covid-19-15252526
 


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