Octopus vulgaris. Source: Suma Aqualife Park, KOBE, Japan
Baby octopus. Source: R. Hopcroft, University of Alaska, Fairbanks (UAF). Image from the Census of Marine Zooplankton website
The octopuses seem to be the most intelligent of the invertebrates. Years of maze and problem-solving experiments have revealed that octopuses are playful, have long-term memory and can learn from experience.
There is little social learning for octopuses in the wild because they are solitary. Their accumulative learning is limited because they rarely live longer than three years. There is no learning associated with parental care. Larval octopuses are orphaned, microplankton, initially the size of a grain of rice.
“It’s extremely easy to anthropomorphize octopuses. They make eye contact with you. They respond to you. They reach toward you. There's just something mesmerizing for people about octopuses.”
Jean Geary Boal of the Cephalopod Center in Galveston, Texas.
Source: Armed But Not Dangerous by Doug Stewart . National Wildlife Magazine . 1997: 35, 2.
NORMAN, MARK D>