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Octopus Nursery Two Miles Deep off California Coast
From the Cool Marine Life Files....
As an octopus enthusiast, I was both delighted and embarrassed to learn that octopus eggs can take a full decade to hatch. How did I not know something so basic about their biology? And frankly, I’m now curious as hell as to why these sea animals have evolved with eggs that take 10 years to hatch; what odd process led to that incubation span?
I gleaned that tidbit from this article: Discovered in the deep: an octopus’s garden in the shade printed in The Guardian.
Scientists found this deep sea octopus nursery and have been researching it for a few years.
Returning more than a dozen times with a remotely operated deep-diving robot, a team led by researchers at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) gathered evidence that backs up this theory and provides astonishing new insights into life in the deep.
The mauve, grapefruit-sized female octopuses each lay about 60 eggs and cement them to the bare rock, then guard them until they hatch. Temperature probes showed the water bathing the eggs ranged from 5C to 10C (40-50F), while less than a metre away it dropped to a frigid 1.6C.
Revisiting individual nests, the team saw that rather than taking a decade or longer to hatch, as would happen in the very cold deep sea, baby octopuses emerge from their cosy nests after less than two years, dramatically boosting their chances of survival.
How cool is that?
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